I’ve placed Forums and Groups in the “gray zone” because there are too many variable that affect your traffic in these cases, such as:
- – How much traffic the forum and group receives
- – How quickly the ‘discussion’ or threads’ cycle through the group
- – How well the group’s discussion posts are indexed by the search engines
- – Whether reading of posts is open to general public or requires visitors to first register an account.
Overall, you can expect a nice stream of traffic from within a forum or group, particularly forums and groups where participation is high and members are passionate about their subject of interest.
Plus, you may scoop up some natural search engine traffic if the forum or group’s discussions are indexed by the search engines
The method here is very simple:
1) Find forums or groups pertaining to your market or niche 2) Make sure these forums/groups receive a good amount of traffic, and that memebers participate on a regular basis. In other words, lots of active discussions and new topics. Avoid any forum/group where no one has posted in months 3) Register on account for yourself and start reading through some of the threads to get a feel for the community. 4) Introduce yourself and start participating in discussions. 5) Once you’ve integrated into the community, place a short advertisement with a link to your opt-in page in your signature file
The idea is to build rapport, trust and credibility as a member of the commubity, much in the way you build a relationship with your opt-in list.
There is no need to post about your business, or be pushy in any way. As long as you are a helpful member of the community, people will be narurally curious about you and drawn to the information in your signature file.
For example, let’s say you are in the “pet training” market, and in one of the forums you participate in, someone has asked a question about how to get their cat to use a new brand of cat litter.
Being the ‘expert’, you provide a helpful answer, like:
“Cats love routine. They don’t take kindly to sudden changes – and their particularly disturbed by sudden changes to their litter-box routine. When you need to introduce them to a new litter , the best thing to do is go slowly.
Start by mixing 3/4 of the old litter with 1/4 of the new. After a few days, clean the box again and re-fill it with 1/2 old litter and 1/2 new litter. Leave this for about 5 to 6 days.
Clean the box out again. This time mix 3/4 new litter with 1/4 old .That should do it. By the next time you clean and change out the box, you should be able to fill it with 100% of the new litter.
Hope this helps! -Your Name
Now, when you are using a signature file, what happens is that your posted-reply will hav an extra space below it, where your ‘ad’ can appear:
Sample Signature File:
If you’re mystified by your furry friends , don’t despair! You CAN learn how to ‘speak their language’. I can help! Get your free copy of my special report, “How to Talk to Cats’, just for visiting:
Anyone reading your post can see this signature . If they’re interested, they’ll click through to your site and, ideally, opt-in to your list.
This type of traffic is usually good quality because the visitors are ‘pre-targeted’ due to context.