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Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by azeds, Sep 20, 2013.

  1. azeds

    azeds Junior Member

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    Since I don't have too much to contribute to this community as I've never been involved or interested in making money through churn and burn sites until recently, I figure I will start a thread and help people in a way that I know how.

    I have built and eventually sold a handful of very popular niche forums, the forums were either bought out privately or were purchased by 'media' companies.
    I'm willing to answer any and all questions in regards to building a successful forum.

    shoot.
     
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  2. Panther28

    Panther28 Elite Member

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    how long did you have them before they started to reach a decent popularity, what bh methods did you use to get them started, (or would u recommend) and what is the best method of monetizing.

    Cheers
     
  3. azeds

    azeds Junior Member

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    From my experience if you don't see your community 'active' (at least 20+ posts a day) within 3-6 months it is a dud and will never take off. All the communities I built were Topic and Region specific, to give you an example of this 'Ice Hockey' targeted to people living in Asia. The fastest it took me to sell one of my communities was 9 months and it had 20k members at that point, I believe it now sits around 300k.

    The topics the forums were based around were always created on things I personally had an interest in, this allowed me to actually understand my user base and give a shit about what they wanted to see because it was exactly the same thing I would have wanted to stumble across.
    There was only ever one time when I had serious competition for a forum, and that died pretty fast because I was providing a better experience then my competitor.

    The whole thing behind forums is giving a shit and being original. There is so many forums created every day that completely flop, nobody wants to join a shitty ass tech forum with 56 members and 800 posts when they can join the tech site with 100k members and a million posts. The only exception to this is when it's something thats local to them, a web user is much more likely to join a (in it's initial stages) small forum that is geo targeted, users LOVE to communicate with people that are in their city, state or country.

    Monetization for me always came from the big players in the industries I was building my forums around, the regional dominance of the websites meant that a lot of well known companies wanted to advertise with us, and for good money at that.
    However all of the successful forums I built I did not start advertising until it had a solid member base, there's nothing that turns a user off more than finding a fairly inactive website with a ton of stupid ads.

    About the blackhead methods, I really can't comment as I was never (at that point in time) interested in link building. There was a few times back in 09 where I bought some scrape box blasts for one of my forums, but I don't remember the outcome.
     
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  4. lietuvis002

    lietuvis002 BANNED BANNED

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    How do you market forums with high competition?
     
  5. azeds

    azeds Junior Member

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    Marketing forums is interesting and there is many options that you can take, so I'll just tell you what I was doing.
    Seeing as the topics that my forums were based around were things I had a genuine interest in, I would build a legitimate, real life community out of it.
    When in the initial stages of starting up and well below the 500-800 member mark, we would organise events. So to go off my example above, we would organise it so that people living in Japan could meet up at particular sports bar and watch a hockey match together.
    By giving the users the ability to actually meet each other it builds a REAL community who give a shit about everything that goes into it. These meet ups and opportunities for users to interact continued well after I sold them off.
     
  6. mrtwister_65

    mrtwister_65 Regular Member

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    On what platform (script) you built your forums? Paid, free?
     
  7. byChance

    byChance Junior Member

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    Hi azeds, I´m working on a forum network website. It is a nice project and if is made well, the success can be asured. So i´m sure you can give me some gold recommendations / advices that I will really appreciate. Can I PM you some question in regards with my project?

    Thanks
     
  8. azeds

    azeds Junior Member

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    My personal favourite forum software would have to be Invision Power Board, I feel it is the most powerful without being to heavy or over the top, IP.Content is an EXTREMELY powerful add-on if you are looking to build a website around your forum..
    VBulletin (what BHW is using) is popular too, but the only really benefit I can see for it is that there is a much larger developer base for it. But IPB is slowly catching up.

    If you are unable to use a paid software I recommend MyBB.




    Sure, PM me if you don't want to post here.
     
  9. amandaspears86

    amandaspears86 Junior Member

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    Based on your own experience, what is the simplest and easy to navigate forum platform? Did you apply SEO techniques to market your forums?
     
  10. azeds

    azeds Junior Member

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    In terms of front end or back end?
    I think all major forum platforms offer very easy to use front ends, however in the backend is where some of them get stupid.

    Xenforo is probably the best when it comes to a simple back end admin system, IPB and VB both have cluttered backends where you can spend some time trying to find the most basic of settings, both are more powerful than xenforo though.
    IPB's new 4.0 version looks like they have managed to fix this issue though.
     
  11. prab1996

    prab1996 Elite Member

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    your gf's <3 ♥♥♥♥
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    have you tried paid posting?
     
  12. $Bunny$

    $Bunny$ Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Your review on Xenforo forum software ? M thinking to buy it.. many big sites moving to them.
    What do you think ?
     
  13. CoolAdvisor

    CoolAdvisor Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    My question is how to fast start?
    I mean how to make your forum popular?
    what you did for it?
     
  14. Zer0199

    Zer0199 Junior Member

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    I run a fairly big gaming news site we'll just say high xx,xxx uvs daily. We're looking to setup a forum on the site but are unsure how to market users to post it in.


    Most of our traffic are users reading our news articles from organic search, they normally just read then leave the site(or clicking ads etc.)


    What would be the best way to grab there attentions in participating in the forums and being active.


    We are also thinking of using IPB forum or Xenforo.


    Any suggestions, tips or ideas will be greatly appreciated.
     
  15. pulkitseo

    pulkitseo Senior Member

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    I will need ur help ...please add me in skype or give me ur fb id
     
  16. seosky

    seosky Power Member

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    Make it different, Provide what everyone will be happy to have. Like BHW - I Learn almost every day something new here.