Forum marketing is an effective way to market your business and surpass your competitors. It is a high ROI digital marketing strategy when done appropriately because it can leave a good lasting impression on a wide audience. If you are new to forum marketing, these guidelines will surely be able to help you get started and integrate this strategy into your marketing plan:
Find the appropriate forums for your type of business
To be able to implement a successful forum marketing strategy, you need to first find the right forums that are relevant to your niche. You shouldn’t waste your time and effort on forums that are not related to your industry because you will not find your target market on these sites.
You will be able to find popular forums by doing your research on the internet or asking other people such as your clients, employees, family, and friends. Although you will come across a lot of forums, it is recommended to limit your list to about 5 to 10 with lots of active members. When choosing which forums to participate in, you
Create your account on these industry-relevant forums.
Once you’re done with the list of forums that you want to integrate into your digital marketing strategy, that next thing that you should do is to setup your account immediately.
It is important to note that in forums, seniority is an important aspect. Those with older registration dates are seen as more reliable and held in a higher esteem compared to new members. Knowing the advantage of early registration, you must create your forum accounts as soon as you can.
Furthermore, when you have created your accounts, you should consider forum marketing as part of your long-term digital marketing strategy because this is the only way that this will work. You should establish your account’s reputation and credibility by staying active in the community and not just using these channels whenever you have a new marketing campaign.
Follow the forums’ community guidelines.
When you register, you will be given access to a user agreement and forum posting guidelines. Review and always follow the rules set for these forums because failing to do so will invalidate your efforts of establishing your reputation and building relationships with your potential customers. Moreover, repeatedly violating the guidelines can get your accounts suspended or even totally banned from these websites.
Introduce yourself to other members of the forums.
Online forums usually encourage new members to introduce themselves to other users. Normally, there is a dedicated thread for welcoming new members, and this is where you could create an introductory post.
You don’t really have to make a long introductory post—basically, all you need to write is a short description of your expertise and your reasons why you decided to join that particular forum. Obviously, it is unwise to make marketing or sales pitches in your very first post because this could result in a negative impression or will get you banned. Let other members know that your primary goal is to learn more about the industry and contribute your knowledge to the community.
Always remember that forum marketing entails immersing in the community and engaging your target market by adding value and being helpful.
Take your time in learning about the community.
No matter how excited you are to post right away, it would be better if you spend some time lurking on the threads to study the community. By reading previous posts, you will get a sense of their culture and quirks. Try to learn which topics get the most engagement, what are the most commonly asked questions and issues in your industry, and obtain whatever information you can get which will help you fit in more easily.
Contribute valuable information to the community.
In order for your forum marketing efforts to be successful, you need to contribute your knowledge and expertise in your niche. Not only will this allow you to establish good relationships with other members which can be your potential clients, but will also help you position yourself as an authority in your industry.
Whenever a member asks a question or opens a topic that is relevant to your business, dazzle them with extremely valuable answers. Keep in mind that this is an opportunity to show that you know the ins and outs of your industry and that you are a reliable go-to source for information. To build stronger trust, back up your answers and posts with links to credible sources and reply to follow-up questions and comments as soon as possible.
Once you have established yourself as a trusted expert, they will soon ask for your suggestions and you can get on with your sales pitch safely. To further entice the members of the community to avail your services, you may also offer special discounts, free product samples or trials for your services, as well as host contests exclusively for the members of a certain forum. However, make sure that you ask permission from the moderators before you execute such marketing campaigns.
Forum marketing is only effective if you know how to do it right. Always remember that it is a huge mistake to use bots and spam forums just to spread your links out there. If you’re lucky, spamming can get you temporary traffic—but this is obviously not what you want. The worst-case scenario that could result from spamming is that your online reputation will be severely damaged.
If you don’t have the time to participate in forums, you can always hire a digital marketer who can do this for you. At Infinit3solutions, our digital marketing professionals can extend help not only with forum marketing but also with social media marketing, content marketing, email marketing, as well as other digital marketing efforts.
What sets us apart is that we make sure that we fully understand your business and your offerings through research and analysis, as well as employ ethical practices to maintain your good brand image. To learn more about our services, do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Latest posts by Camille Tadena (see all)
- What Makes a Great Website? - May 22, 2018
- Modern Marketing Strategies: How to Make Kickass Videos - May 7, 2018
- What is the Best Type of Website for Your Business - April 30, 2018