Forum marketing is an effective way to promote your business online, but you need to make sure you go about it the right way if you wish to fully capitalize on the benefits that it has to offer. While each forum covers a different topic, and each forum has its own culture filled with unique people and subtle nuances, there is some basic forum etiquette that you should always try to follow.
A lurker is forum user who reads a forum but never participates It’s a good idea to lurk for a few days before you make your first post. Read some of the posts and take not of how people interact with each other and try to get a feel for the forum as well. You can make your first post once you have a good idea of what the place is about and tailor your post to suit.
Follow the Rules
All forums have rules and it is your responsibility to read and follow all of the rules. Just like anything else, there are a few unwritten rules that you need to observe. It can be tricky, but it’s still important. If someone calls you out on your breaking a rule, then apologize and accept the correction gracefully. It goes without saying that you do not repeat that mistake.
Don’t Be Aggressive
While some forums are more lenient in how they deal with people that self-promote, virtually all of them will take some form of action. Some forums will simply delete your post, others will give you a temporary ban, and others will ban you permanently. That would obviously be counterproductive. But there reason why it’s important to follow this bit of forum marketing etiquette: the members of the forum may mark you as a spammer. If that happens it will be next to impossible to overcome.
Read Before Posting
Ensure you read an entire thread before you respond. You want to ensure you understand the tone and content of the thread before you add your two cents. What often happens is that people will come to some sort of consensus or solution about half-way through the thread. If you then mention something that has already been addressed or ask a question that has been answered many times, then you will lose points in the eyes of the forum. But if you follow the proper forum marketing etiquette and read before you post, then your fellow members will appreciate it.
It’s commonsense really, If there’s a secret to effective forum marketing, then this is it. You need to contribute to the community. Being a regular contributor is not only good etiquette, but it also increases your reputation within the community. As you become more active, more people will get to know you, the more likely they will be to buy from you.
This may seem like a lot of work, but it really isn’t. The learning curve is pretty quick. Following the proper forum marketing etiquette keeps thing running smoothly and gives you the best chance to get your offer in front of the people most likely to want it.