A lot of people nowadays owns a bulletin board (also known as forum). The world wide web is literally filled with thousands of forums. It shows that, many people prefer to have their own communities, hence they launch their own forums. Launching a forum is as easy as making a cup of tea, but the hardest part is managing it.
I have been visiting internet forums for many years, and over the years I have seen many different types of forums. Some forums had amazing communities while some were pure crap. One thing I learned is the fact managing a forum is often much harder than managing a blog or other type of site.
With that in mind, I feel that there are 5 challenges that forum owners often have to encounter:
Keeping Members Active
I think the biggest challenge for a forum owner is keeping members active. Very often than not, a forum becomes a graveyard due to members not interacting with each other. When that happens, it can be hard to revive the forum. Normally when a forum is new, it can be quite hard to convince people to stay active.
Finding Good Staff
Another challenge is the fact a forum owner has to find great staff for his/her forum. Very often a forum gets disorganized and chaotic because of incompetent and immature staff. A forum is as good as its staff, so having proper staff is very important.
Many forum owners are not really good at the technical aspects (i.e. fixing bugs, adding plugins, etc.) of running forums. As a result, they are often vulnerable to hackers and technical errors. They often have to hire people to do these technical tasks.
A lot of forum owners do not have the required capital to properly manage a forum. Even though one can own a forum with minimal expenses, a good forum will always have some major expenses (i.e. hosting, domain, premium plugins, contests, etc.). That is why, one should only open a forum if he/she has the required capital to make sure it is a success.
Last but not the least, personal life often comes in the way of a forum webmaster. If a forum owner has a lot going on in personal life, it can affect his/her activity on the forum.
As you can see, managing a forum is not very easy. One has to face many challenges to own and maintain a successful forum. Webmasters who are up for these challenges thrive, others succumb.