There are currently thousands such forums online, and more are constantly appearing all over the internet.
Many of them won’t survive more than a few months, while others go on to become important figures in the rapidly expanding online community.
You want to know what the difference is.
The ideas that follow will examine the causes of various forums’ success as well as how to capitalize on it.
Forums provide as a venue for idea exchange.
That short sentence has two essential components: people and ideas.
You need people in your forum, and you need them to be discussing important topics that will draw in more participants.
This helps you solve the first issue, which is getting people to talk.
You will need to get a few friends and start posting topics that others would be interested in discussing because people don’t want to join empty forums.
When your forum is small, you should really focus on a specific niche and assemble a solid core of users who consistently post.
You are unlikely to succeed with a large forum given the number of enormous forums already available.
If your users urge you to grow later, you can always do so.
Start off small and focus on high-quality content, or if you already have a forum, scale it back and identify your audience.
Spend some time personalizing the forum if you are skilled with programming or visual design so that users feel like they are a part of something unique.
You should spend some time making your forum appear polished and welcoming to users in your specialty.
It could be time for a redesign if you already have a forum.
Since our sense of sight is our strongest, a redesign will have a significant impact.
Increasing amounts of traffic.
We won’t linger too much on it as everyone speaks about how to acquire traffic and every website needs it.
Instead, we’ll examine how to turn that traffic into money.
Let’s try to cram some advertisements in there now that you have a core set of users and your forum is looking nice and tidy.
You are better off finding your own sponsors because affiliate banners like Adsense generally won’t generate you money unless you have a ton of traffic.
Finding individual sponsors will be simpler for you because you are focusing on a particular demographic.
Depending on what you believe will work best, you can use something like Adbrite, where individual sponsors will join up for your site, Commission Junction, where you can acquire niche-specific advertisers, or a bespoke php solution.
If you can sell goods or services to your members directly, that is an even better method to make money.
For instance, a forum discussing web providers may directly offer web hosting, a community about travel may directly offer downloaded wall art, and so forth.
Another excellent suggestion is to set up something akin to a gift shop where customers can purchase items bearing the forum’s emblem, such as T-shirts and coffee mugs.
You might possibly look for a decent drop-shipping merchant deal for forums devoted to arts and crafts.
Since the options are so varied, we will talk about it in the next post.
For the time being, focus your forum on a particular specialty, assemble a core group, and begin creating some useful content.
You can start looking for ads, set up services for sale, or put up a product line if you notice an increase in visitors.