Where to invest money when creating a forum.

I was just wondering what everyone's opinion on where would you invest your money when creating a forum. Would you put it into Market, advertisement or bringing features to the site.

If marketing or advertising. What would you say are the best options or how someone should go about it.
 

Lämmchen

The Lämminator
Administrator
I personally would spread the money around and not rely on one thing only. Sometimes you can even get free advertising by writing a press release if there is something specially happening at your forum that would of interest to a community.
 

Jason5

Resident
FP$
708
Advertising might be the right choice if you have interesting things which other sites don't offer. A special plugin or feature made specially for your forum might attract users with decent advertising.
 

Darth-Apple

Familiar Face
Just to share my experience real quick, I tried paid ads. Spent about $50 on them. Not a single member registered from it. They may work better for you. Perhaps my ads weren't good enough, who knows. It could have been anything, but they weren't very good for us at least. :p

Premium plugins are always great if you can get them. I got a subscription from MyBBoost, and they've been phenomenal additions to the community for a pretty fair price. Strongly recommend, my members love them.
 
Just to share my experience real quick, I tried paid ads. Spent about $50 on them. Not a single member registered from it. They may work better for you. Perhaps my ads weren't good enough, who knows. It could have been anything, but they weren't very good for us at least. :p

Premium plugins are always great if you can get them. I got a subscription from MyBBoost, and they've been phenomenal additions to the community for a pretty fair price. Strongly recommend, my members love them.

Thank you for the insight. Personally I would say that ads, definitely can be a hit or miss sometimes.

I had a subscription on there. Got some great plugins, especially the messaging system.
 

TopSilver

Resident
FP$
121
Facebook ads aren't a bad sell to be honest. Marketing your site with facebook advertising (such as in users feeds) is a lot cheaper than anything such as google adwords. I haven't done it enough to tell you if you'll see results from personal experience though I have heard from many people that while it might not drive loads of people to your site is actually isn't a bad thing to have at your arsenal. As cheap as it is there isn't much to lose in my opinion compared to more expensive measures you could take with other high-end advertising companies like google. Just my thoughts
 
Facebook ads aren't a bad sell to be honest. Marketing your site with facebook advertising (such as in users feeds) is a lot cheaper than anything such as google adwords. I haven't done it enough to tell you if you'll see results from personal experience though I have heard from many people that while it might not drive loads of people to your site is actually isn't a bad thing to have at your arsenal. As cheap as it is there isn't much to lose in my opinion compared to more expensive measures you could take with other high-end advertising companies like google. Just my thoughts


I was most definitely thinking about taking out a Facebook advert, maybe not alot of people will join, but it would certainly hopefully get a good amount of views and I was also thinking of doing the same thing Instagram as these are big social media platforms.
 

bomb

Reputable
This is how I allocate my resources. (in the first 3 years of my board)
COMPONENTMoney (%)Time (%)Why?
Marketing0 %0%Incentivizing members is a wrong move.
Advertisement (Paid)0%0%No need.
Features (plugins)1%0%People don't come to see looks and features. Only the necessary features.
Building a relationships with existing members.78%80%This is the most important part. You get it wrong, even with $$$ nothing will happen!
Content21%20%Forums are now like any other website. You need content. But not just random content. Well researched articles that can invoke a discussion.
My take:
  • Focus your efforts on what matters. The community, build relationships with the existing few members.
  • I know very many ugly bords with millions of members. check out nairaland.com. Facebook is ugly too, by my standards :)
  • Start slow and don’t try to run before you can walk. Concentrate on basic community platforms that make it as easy as possible for members to connect with each other.
  • Forget about loads of features and colorful styles, because above all people will join a community for the discussions and the opportunity to build relationships.
  • Start with as few sections as possible, as too many sections often mean it will be hard to create a community feel, and conversations will be diluted and stretched too thin. It’s difficult for members to get to know each other if you’ve got dozens of different sections with little to no activity.

My 2 cents!! :cool:
 

Matthew

#MasksSaveLives
FP$
894
This is how I allocate my resources. (in the first 3 years of my board)
COMPONENTMoney (%)Time (%)Why?
Marketing0 %0%Incentivizing members is a wrong move.
Advertisement (Paid)0%0%No need.
Features (plugins)1%0%People don't come to see looks and features. Only the necessary features.
Building a relationships with existing members.78%80%This is the most important part. You get it wrong, even with $$$ nothing will happen!
Content21%20%Forums are now like any other website. You need content. But not just random content. Well researched articles that can invoke a discussion.
My take:
  • Focus your efforts on what matters. The community, build relationships with the existing few members.
  • I know very many ugly bords with millions of members. check out nairaland.com. Facebook is ugly too, by my standards :)
  • Start slow and don’t try to run before you can walk. Concentrate on basic community platforms that make it as easy as possible for members to connect with each other.
  • Forget about loads of features and colorful styles, because above all people will join a community for the discussions and the opportunity to build relationships.
  • Start with as few sections as possible, as too many sections often mean it will be hard to create a community feel, and conversations will be diluted and stretched too thin. It’s difficult for members to get to know each other if you’ve got dozens of different sections with little to no activity.

My 2 cents!! :cool:
Looking at the forums linked in your signature and given the timeline of 3 years, how is not incentivizing your members or advertising working out for you?

@OP, I'd rather join a forum with active contests and cool rewards (IE, FP T-shirts?) then a forum with all the bells and whistles. Smaller give aways coupled with active community management and engagement will really work to solidify your base early on in the game. As for advertising, I would focus on SEO, word by mouth, and pushing your website's link out to the world. Join a tech forum and link a tech article you wrote on your website. Join a gaming forum and link an article you wrote on your website. Try to make your website an authority on the subjects and draw crowds that would benefit from it. As for purchasing ads, I'm not going to lie. I use an ad blocker and will purposefully not visit websites linked through ads. Occasionally, I will look through advertising websites like FP for a community but I will not click a free standing ad that just randomly pops up. Given ad blocker popularity, I would venture to say I'm not alone in this. So, unless you can pay for advertising that reaches far and wide and will target large swatches of your target audience, I would say it's a rather waste of time.
 
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