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  1. #1
    Full Member OICUAM2's Avatar
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    Forum Model Worth It?
    I'm trying to decide if I should keep or kill a couple of my forums.

    I know it is very difficult to get a forum going and maintain the momentum.

    I'm wondering if all the work is worth it even if the forum takes off???

    For example, I visit this site all the time, but I rarely click on ads.

    I know ABW was recently sold. This made me think that maybe building forums was worth the effort.

    Also, I visit many forums considered as the best in their industry and yet it doesn't seem like there is a similar amount of activity for such popular sites. There are some awesome people who post all the time and keep the site going, but I would think there would be hundreds or thousands of posts per hour considering the popularity of the topics and the sites.

    It was easy to keep working on my forums when the price was low, but now that the price is higher, I have a decision to make. Keep or kill.
    Last edited by OICUAM2; May 5th, 2010 at 05:46 PM.
    [URL=http://www.investeverymonth.com]InvestEveryMonth.com[/URL] - Build Wealth

  2. #2
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    With any efforts I put into marketing, I feel like whatever I do should at least pay for itself. If something is costing more money than it is making, it's probably not worth keeping.

    What caused the price of the forum to go up? I use free software for my forums. Having a forum attracts new visitors and also gives a website continually changing content, so it has a lot more value than just advertising revenue. You do want to incorporate forums into a site such as ABW has, because their forum community is likely to use other features of the site.
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
    Maxwell Garner | Owner | [URL="http://creditcardaffiliateservices.com"]CreditCardAffiliateServices.com[/URL] | Phone - 407-504-5944

  3. #3
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    If it's a big enough niche to get decent traffic, it's certainly worthwhile. Just don't assume that traditional affiliate marketing techniques will work on it. They do work with some forums (and REALLY well with some - like FatWallet), but there are many other forms of monetization that usually work better with most forums.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
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  4. #4
    Full Member OICUAM2's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies.

    The price is going up because my sites are built with Ning. They advertised themselves as a platform for building free or premium social networks (with forums, blogs, video, profile pages, etc...), but now they are forcing all the free sites to pay a monthly fee. It isn't a huge monthly fee for everything you get, but I experimented with a lot of niches and a lot of domain names to see what would work. The site below in the signature is one of the Ning sites I built.
    [URL=http://www.investeverymonth.com]InvestEveryMonth.com[/URL] - Build Wealth

  5. #5
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
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    I have not run a forum myself, but one thing I have always wondered is what the effect of having the same X visitors day after day would be as opposed to a lot of new visitors each day (search traffic). I would think these same people would not be inclined to click on ads as much as new daily visitors. So it seems something like AdSense might not do too well.

    On the flip side, regular visitors might develop a sense of trust and loyalty - so you could push affiliate-link products better. I know I have bought a few products recommended by people here through their links. I think you would have work very hard to develop a forum with this type of dedicated group, and it would have to be a niche that would lend itself to some good ways to monetize.
    This World is Not My Home
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  6. #6
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    Having a forum attracts new visitors as well. I know that when I have a question about something, I google it and forums are usually where I find my answers. People discuss issues, their threads get indexed and people with similar issues get referred to the threads.

    Just like with this forum, members of the forum are more likely to be AM's, OPM's, and the like, but I'm sure a lot of affiliates (new and veteran) visit the forum in search of resources.
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
    Maxwell Garner | Owner | [URL="http://creditcardaffiliateservices.com"]CreditCardAffiliateServices.com[/URL] | Phone - 407-504-5944

  7. #7
    Beachy Bill's Avatar
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    There are, indeed, a lot of forum users/readers/visitors that are not [active] members. I just checked the stats for ABW:

    Currently Active Users: 828 (71 members and 757 guests).
    As of date and time of this post.

    Not bad, eh?
    Bill / Marketing Blog @ 12PM - Current project: Resurrecting my "baby" at South Baltimore..
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  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador kaizen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill View Post
    There are, indeed, a lot of forum users/readers/visitors that are not [active] members. I just checked the stats for ABW:

    Currently Active Users: 828 (71 members and 757 guests).
    As of date and time of this post.

    Not bad, eh?
    Are bots included in those 757 guests?

  9. #9
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I believe so. That's standard for vBulletin.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

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