Several forum marketing tips – part 2

By | July 30, 2007

In part 2 of my take on forums, I’ll touch on gaining reputation in forums. But a word on netiquette. When you start threads, it’s important to always be polite and observe netiquette at all times. Also, please observe proper language usage. If the forum is in English but your English is not good, then include a small apology for the broken English. Of course, if the forum is non English, then you don’t need to bother about the language part, but at any rate – netiquette is always important.

Gain reputation for yourself

Contributing in threads and helping others out with your advice and insight is an integral part of being a forumer. The long threads that have many posts in them are the best places to make an impression, since they garner so many views.

The more you help people out, the more your recommendations (on products you sell or affiliate market) will be favorably received by others. I’ve bought stuff from others in forums just because they took the trouble to help me out, even though I could get it without going through their affiliate links. It’s just a way of thanking others for the help. So, always have a helpful spirit as you never know when it could pay you back in dividends. It’s an ethical way of tipping and getting tipped, I would say.

You can add in your own bonuses or other promotions if you are running a sales thread, as these kinds of threads seem to be extremely popular in all forums that allow sales threads. There are some ways to maximize these threads to their fullest potential. Always reply promptly to any queries in your thread and always explain the benefits of your product or service at the given opportunity.

Many forums provide trader feedback points which work something like the eBay trader reputation system. At first, it won’t be so easy to get positive trader points, but eventually, these accumulate along with each successful transaction. You may want to start small and purchase a lot of small priced services at first (those in the $5 – $10 range). Having a large amount of positive feedback points is crucial to getting forum-based sales.

At the other end of the scale are people who over misuse the positive feedback system to use it like some form of forum currency (on forums that adopt a feedback system). For example, opening threads to promote a product and offering to provide reputation points to whoever comments or buys. Since reputation points cost nothing, this can be regarded as misusing the feedback system.

Don’t spam the forums or members

Some members misuse the forums to spam about an affiliate product and others do it via PM (private messaging). It’s not ok to spam, and these posts usually get deleted. Blatant spamming is not in good taste, and only reflects poorly on the poster. So think twice before doing it.

In summary, forums are great places to interact with others who share the same interest as you do. The savvy marketer is also one who knows how to milk forums to their full potential. Forums are the cafes of the Web world where the pulse is on, the interaction is genuine, and the addiction is real 🙂

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