Huge Free Traffic Opportunity With Forum Marketing
Huge Free Traffic Opportunity With Forum Marketing
This is also an old-school marketing strategy, but it still works very well.
It’s all about signing up to niche related forums, contributing valuable posts, and driving visitors to your site through your forum signature.
The first thing you need to do is to find the forums to market you website on. There are 2 easy ways to do this:
You can either go to Google and search for “niche +forums”, so if you were to target the weight loss niche you would search for:
weight loss +forums
There should be a lot of active forums to choose from if you do this.
The other way you can find forums is to go to Big-Boards.com and search for your niche there.
In fact, use both methods to search for active forums in your niche and make a list of about 10 or more forums to research a bit more.
Go to each forum and look for these things:
– How active is it? Go through some of the threads and posts and just get an idea of how regularly people post and respond. If there are new posts every day, it’s an active forum, and that’s exactly what you want.
– Does it allow signature links? So a signature is found at the bottom of each post and is usually a link to an external website. This is where you will be promoting your product, so make sure it is possible to place a link in a signature. If you see a bunch of posts with a signature link, it’s a good sign.
Make a list of the best 5 forums you want to become involved in, these should be the most active forums of the initial list.
Now just create an account at each of the forums, read through the rules and just get a feel for what the forum is like.
For best results setup your forum profile correctly.
It’s always a good idea to use your real name at the forums (or at least a pen name) because you want people to trust you.
Who are random strangers on a forum going to trust more, Sally Jones or cardigo_23? The real person with the real name, right?
You also want to upload a unique picture for the profile. Of course a real photo of a person would be the best thing, but the next best thing is to get a cartoon picture drawn of a random person and just use that as a profile picture.
Just go to http://www.faceyourmanga.com/ or
http://www.southparkstudios.com/avatar/ and create a quick cartoon avatar for your profile.
Have fun with it and make it unique so it is easy for people to identify it with your profile.
Now just write a few lines to describe yourself (or your alter ego) and put your URL in the website space.
The most important part of this tactic is your forum signature. All forums have particular rules when it comes to links in signature, so make sure you read up on what the rules are in each forum, and make sure you follow those rules.
To craft an effective signature, you want to make the text bold (if permitted) or in a bright color like red. The actual text should have some kind of emotional appeal to your target audience, and include a strong call to action to click through to your site.
Here is an example for the weight loss niche:
“Having trouble losing weight after pregnancy? Click here for the fastest and easiest way to get back into shape NOW!” You can either have the entire text as a link to your site, or just the click here part of it. It’s up to you, I like to go with the entire text.
Most forums won’t allow you to create a signature until a certain number of posts, and that’s exactly what you’ll be doing next.
Just go through some of the more popular threads and start posting helpful responses to them. If someone is asking for opinions, just put your opinion out there, and don’t worry too much about making a really big impression.
The key with posting is to actually provide some kind of helpful, valuable information.
Don’t just post useless comments like “I agree” or “great post”. They don’t add anything to the conversation.
Also don’t sell anything in your posts. That is what your signature is for. Just provide helpful comments, and if people find value in it (and they should if you provide value) they will click through to your site.
If you see people asking questions in threads that don’t get any replies, just go ahead and reply with some valuable content. They will be really thankful you did. But what if you actually don’t know what to post?
That’s where Google comes in. The easiest, and best way to post valuable content is to research the topic on Google. Just do a quick search, read through a few websites, and then reply in the thread with your findings. Write it in your own words as well, don’t just say you found a helpful article or whatever.
Just say it. This makes you appear more authoritative and knowledgeable.
Try to post regularly each day on all the forums you registered on. The more you post the more people will see your signature, and the more people you have clicking on your link.
After a week or so, find out what the hot topics are and start a new thread on that topic. Ask a meaningful question or provide some quality information about it.
The hottest topics will always get a good response, and that is where you need to be active. People will respond to your post and you should always respond back. Again, don’t respond with one-liners like “Thanks for replying”, keep the conversation going and keep asking them questions. Even offer to help them with anything if they need it. It’s all about building trust with the members and a reputation for providing high quality information. When people on the forum see that you offer great content on the forums, they will automatically associate you with value, meaning anything that you promote they will also associate with value.
So once they click on your link they are more than halfway to buying the product. A lot of people don’t necessarily buy a product for the sake of the product, they buy something because they trust the person that is telling them about it.
Provide valuable, high quality content and remember, don’t sell anything in your posts! Let your signature do the selling for you, that’s what it’s there for.