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  1. #1
    Member
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    January 18th, 2005
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    Anyone have a successful forum?
    Hi everyone,

    I recently launched a new site that focuses on one particular product line.

    I created the site to be a sort of "Product Review" website, where people that use the product come to post their experience with the items, and people who are looking to purchase the item come for advice. So, having said that, the page has a "Review Forum" ... but no contributors yet.

    The page is doing well, it has only been indexed for one week, and has already generated 2 sales in 28 click throughs. But no one is using the forum ... which I see as being the big "selling point" of the site.

    So, my question is ... for those of you using forums, how do you draw people in? How can I get people to post?

    Jason

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    Jason,

    Don't see this review forum as a solution, but just a single feature of your site. Focus on adding more features and your own content. Write your own reviews to set some examples and maybe over time you can establish yourself as a guru on the subject. Once people see you as a resource, it'll become a lot easier to get those reviews. Just keep working and never wait for your visitors.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  3. #3
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
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    Forums require a LOT of people and activity in order to achieve "critical mass". For example, there are some 20000 members (see http://forum.abestweb.com/showpost.p...4&postcount=29 ) of this forum with most being "lurkers".
    This World is Not My Home
    We're gonna go inside, we're gonna go outside, inside and outside. . . And then we're gonna go go go and we're not gonna stop til we get across that goalline! Quotes from the movie Rudy, 1993

  4. #4
    Marketing Mistress Lectrickitty's Avatar
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    June 15th, 2005
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    A friend of mine owns a brick & mortar grocery store. She told me that she's noticed that she has to keep a good supply of products on the shelves to make sells. If there is only 1 bottle left of an item, it will set there forever. When she fills the shelf with bottles, they suddenly start selling. I interpret that to what I call the “leftover syndrom”. When the shelf is full, it’s obviously a well sought after item because the store carries a lot of them to meet the demand. When there is only one item on the shelf, it gives the impression that they don’t stock much because nobody wants it.

    Here's how I see her story applying to your forum: The forum might set there for a long time with nobody posting (like the single can on the shelf). Get some friends to sign up and post a few times, (like filling the grocery store shelves) and more people might jump in and start posting (people buying from a full shelf).

    Might not make any difference, but it's worth a try.

    Another idea: Do you have an interactive Q&A section? You might get posts by asking them to answer 3 or 4 quick questions, then expand on that by having them sign up to your forum to give more detailed answers to the questions and to see other people’s answers to the questions. You have to give them a reason to join the forum and a reason to keep coming back to read and make posts. There are zillions of forums on the web. Ask yourself what makes you join a forum.

    These are just quick thoughts, they might not be worth the powder and lead to blow them to h*ll. Tweak these ideas and/or think up some more of your own. Keep trying until you hit a winning combo that gets some action on your forum.

    Also, I've noticed in some of the really popular forums that they only had a few post the first year and then suddenly took off and some of them now have hundreds of posts every day.

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador
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    I've been involved with very successful forums and have a friend trying to talk me into setting some up, but I wouldn't want to put in the amount of time it takes so I personally wouldn't. Just a few regulars with quality, fresh content being added can help big time with growth, which can start off slowly, but the growth happens on an exponential level, from what I've seen.

    There are formats other than forums that need less attention and effort but still have the interactive element. Something like WordPress (blog with some CMS features) has a commenting and user registration system (with premoderation capability) that can be adapted with some imagination.

  6. #6
    Full Member c4's Avatar
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    January 18th, 2005
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    Haiko has a successful forum. You will find it here:
    http://forum.abestweb.com
    [URL=http://www.hesk.com]Help desk software[/URL]

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