Forums And The Coin Of Marketing

Forums And The Coin Of Marketing

Many online businesses view forums as​ a​ means of​ marketing goodwill to​ their customers,​ and it​ can do just that. However,​ forums are equipped with two sides,​ standard.

If you​ make a​ forum available to​ site visitors you​ have accepted one side of​ the​ coin. you​ can,​ in​ fact,​ utilize that forum as​ a​ means of​ marketing trust with your customers. Feedback is​ an​ important component of​ a​ forum and this mechanism allows for the​ free flow of​ thought and allows every individual a​ voice.

This has always been rare in​ customer relations. Typically it​ is​ only the​ glowing testimonials that are shared with site visitors while any negative feedback is​ generally inaccessible. Forums allow both,​ but you​ may find that others who will champion your product or​ service may refute a​ disgruntled comment by one individual.

But negative comments in​ a​ forum also allow you​ to​ be very public about how you​ handle customer complaints. This scenario provides the​ opportunity to​ turn a​ potential negative into a​ highly visible positive experience for consumer and business alike.

The other side to​ the​ forum coin is​ trust marketing on​ a​ personal basis. What I mean by that is​ you​ may do well to​ find a​ select number of​ industry related forums to​ participate in. While this idea is​ not new most business owners who use a​ forum do not use it​ in​ a​ specific enough way.

Here’s what typically happens. a​ business owner signs up for an​ industry forum and makes a​ few posts with a​ fair amount of​ marketing information in​ their signature line. the​ hope is​ that this ‘free’ advertising will convince other forum members to​ come to​ the​ business website. if​ this simplistic view of​ forum marketing is​ how you​ approach the​ subject it​ can often come across as​ disingenuous or​ insincere. in​ fact,​ on​ some forums it​ may even be considered spamming.

If you,​ as​ a​ business owner,​ use a​ forum with links back to​ your website embedded in​ your signature line you​ should seriously consider engaging yourself in​ the​ forum community as​ your prime objective. Respond with helpful information when an​ individual posts a​ question you​ are qualified to​ answer. Include links to​ helpful articles when appropriate and act like a​ member of​ the​ community instead of​ that guy that puts sales flyers on​ car windows – obnoxious and disliked.

Forums are a​ great way to​ reach out to​ existing customers,​ but the​ use of​ peripheral forums can help establish trust with those who may have never heard about you​ or​ your company.

In a​ way similar to​ a​ blog you​ can use these industry specific forums as​ a​ means of​ allowing others to​ catch a​ sense of​ both your personality and expertise. When you​ actually engage in​ the​ community you​ signed up to​ be a​ part of​ you​ will get to​ know many of​ the​ personalities on​ the​ forum and become a​ trusted source for information as​ you​ encourage those who may need the​ advice and information you​ can offer.

Use forums as​ a​ means of​ marketing your site,​ but don’t forget there are TWO powerful ways to​ get your message out utilizing forums. Make use of​ both.

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