forum marketingA popular and free way for you to promote your product or idea is Forum Marketing. When you are promoting on a forum it can be a great way to generate free traffic to your website.

Before you begin posting on forums it is important to understand forum marketing, especially establishing relationships. If you are looking at a forum to promote your site, it is important that you know how to begin before you do.

Think of a forum as a type of community, like a neighborhood of sorts with the other members being your neighbors. By thinking of them in this manner it will help you establish a relationship with them better. Members use the forums as a way of coming together to discuss a certain problem or topic. Forums can be used to obtain information, make friends, ask questions and also for promoting yourself and your business.

Never join a forum and start promoting your business right away, as this will just drive your potential customers in the other direction. You need to first establish yourself in the forum before you begin to promote your business or product.

These are three basic ways you can go about this.

Firstly, register with the forum

In order to actively participate in a forum you need to register yourself first. Choose a forum related to the theme of your site or product. Avoid setting up your signature line immediately, it is better to wait until you have participated in a few discussions.

Once you have registered you need to create a profile about yourself. Here you can give a good explanation about you as well as the business that you operate.

Having registered and set up your profile spend a few days looking around the forum before you post. Take time to read other members’ posts and get a feel for their ideas and concerns. Now is a good time to get acquainted with the rules of that particular forum.

Secondly, start posting

Once you feel you are ready start posting on the forum, but take it slow and easy. Begin by answering other neighbors’ questions and concerns as this will give you the opportunity to share your knowledge. Never start by immediately promoting your business as this can put other members off and can also get you banned from the forum for spamming. You want people to notice you not ignore you.

Thirdly, build your reputation

With your very first post you can begin to build your reputation as an expert in the topic being discussed. To achieve this you need to be sure to help other people with their issues and answer their questions to the best of your knowledge. The more respect you earn in the forum the more clicks you will get on the link in your signature.

Let’s look at several different ways you can build your reputation in a forum.

> Introducing yourself is the first and most important thing you should do. Let your fellow members know a little about yourself but you do not need to go into great detail.

> Avoid posting questions that someone can find on a search engine with little or no trouble.

> Be thoughtful in your questions and take time to format them in the correct way.

> On answering a question ensure that you research your answer before you post it so that you will not gain an unreliable reputation.

Only once you have established yourself in the forum, which may take up to a few weeks depending on how often you visit and post, you can create your signature line and introduce it slowly. Remember that reputation is everything when you are using a forum marketing approach and your reputation will determine the success you achieve.

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