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About the Owner
October 7, 2008, Issue 106
Welcome to "MOE" - MyOwnEzine.com's newsletter
about creating your own ezine and marketing on the Web.
In this Issue, you will find:
> Where to get the number one guide on social marketing
> The proper way to use Forums to sell your products
> Where to find List Building help from a top I.M. guru
> A link to the free "Bum Marketing Ecourse"
> An offer of 20 Bonus items from Jeff Dedrick
> Free info on tax deductions for the SOHO owner
> The freebie, "7 Ways to Make Money While You Sleep"
> And, links to my archives of marketing tips,
free ebooks, software and articles
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For Your Online Success: (Guest Author)
Keys For Successful Forum Marketing
By Marige O'Brien
Forum marketing has recently been touted as a type of
free, organic marketing. But because many marketers go
into forums purely with the intention of marketing, their
actions and atittude unwittingly causes exactly the
opposite to its desired effect. Forums, after all, are not
marketplaces. But when used as such, the marketers'
actions become offensive and will only inspire the wrath
of fellow members and marketers, not to mention the
Before a marketer can effectively market on forums, they
must first understand that this type of marketing-- in order
to be effective -- carries a certain degree of commitment,
responsibility and respect.
To successfully market on any forum, the first requirement
is to take a personal interest in the main topic of the
forum. Not only does that mean visiting it regularly, but
also developing a good relationship with both other
members and the moderators, as well as taking an active
interest in helping others. And, of course, it means abiding
by any and all rules that exist. By doing this, one develops
a reputation and, since it is human nature to work with a
trusted colleague, business will naturally develop from
Because this type of marketing has already suffered
some abuse, many forums have recently (and rightfully)
developed stringent rules designed to protect their
members from abusive or overly-aggressive marketing
tactics. One forum, for instance, grants .sig files only after
a member has created 100 valid posts; another has
disallowed ads in sig files altogether.
Marketers must respect that the purpose of a forum is to
be a platform to exchange ideas on a given topic, NOT
merely to advertise their wares. And, contrary to what
might be thought, this is especially true in marketing
forums, where EVERYONE has something to advertise.
But by focusing on the topic and posting responsible
questions and answers, a marketer's reputation will grow.
From this, the potential sales/sign-ups will naturally follow.
Also, there are different types of forums, beyond the
obvious topical types, of "marketing" or "special
interest", etc. These are examples of one type of forum,
referred to as "open forums." But there are also business
and professional forums, which do not operate under the
same rules and, more often than not, disallow any and all
types of advertising or self-promotion. Forums created to
support the membership of a particular program are
especially adamant on this topic and often request that all
members check their adverts at the door. They ask this
because advertising other programs -- especially to newer
marketers -- can often compromise the very program the
forum was created to support.
With all that said, it is still possible to successfully market
on forums. But in all cases, a pre-requisite for success is
developing a good reputation and a good relationship and
maintaining both. So, while this is a free form of
advertising, it does require a certain amount of investment
as far as time and energy are concerned, not to mention
subtly and finesse. Below are seven practical suggestions
to successfully market on forums.
DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Prior to joining any
forums a certain amount of
research is required.
1. Join relevant forums or forums that are in some way
related to the promotion's primary sales market. For
someone involved with a health related product, for
instance, many types of forums -- from holistic medicine
to mom's at home -- could apply. But to join a forum about
punk music, for instance, would not be very productive.
2. Choose popular forums. Page ranking and the amount
of active members are two good ways to check for this.
This ensures that the forum will have enough members
to remain active. Because forum marketing requires a
certain amount of time invested, this also ensures
that it will be there beyond tomorrow.
3. Choose forums that allow sig tags. If it's possible read
the rules before joining and pay close attention to them.
Your time is important, too. It is better to discover if a
forum does not allow posts of any kind prior to joining.
YOUR FIRST DAY
4. Read and follow the rules. Every forum is different.
Some allow links only to your own website. Others only
allow a certain number of links. One forum allows no more
than five lines in a sig file, for instance. Beyond .sig files,
respect all the rules and be a model member. Complaints
will also give you a bad reputation, whether you're aware
of it or not.
5. Keep your signature tag short and update it regularly.
Ideally, limit yourself to one link, preferrably to your main
website. It presents a much more professional appearance
and is less offensive to members and the moderators.
6. NEVER, EVER create posts that are nothing more than
an advertisement. This is an all-but universal rule and only
displays the marketers lack of experience. At best, the
post will soon be edited, and, if left on the forum (although
an author can always delete their own posts), will only
serve to hurt the marketer's reputation. At worst, it could
be grounds for being banned.
Some forums have a special Advertisement Section, an
area where all members can post a.ds, though they are
usually limited to no more than one per day.
If no such section exists, after being a member for at
least a few weeks, a marketer can send a Private
Message (PM) to the moderator(s) and politely suggest
that an advertising section be added.
Point out that this would mollify any members from putting
links in their .sig files, while allowing them a place to post
their link. And, too, the advertising could become a
service, since it would at the members' discretion to view
them. Of course, they may refuse, but at least you made
7. Work the (for)room. That is, be an active member on
the forum. Plan to spend at least an hour each day
there and take the time to get to know the issues and
other members. Depending on the forum's topic, both new
and experienced marketers can introduce themselves
well with intelligent questions.
As a marketer becomes a regular member, they will
develop a (hopefully) good reputation and, without
saying a word about their promotion, those interested
in their product or promotion will approach THEM.--mo
About the Author
Marige O'Brien (Tracker Mo) actively works as a writer,
web designer and internet marketer. Visit her website,
Tracker Mo's Den
for her latest recommended business opportunities,
etools and articles.
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If you missed the last issue of "MOE", you'll find it at:
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