Marketing with forums is similar to using social networks, twitter, e-mail, newsletters and online magazines (ezines) to attract business to your website. You can create forums for the sole purpose of using it for back-links to your website or you can post on ones that are already live. Either way, the one thing that is required is time.
This kind of advertising does not take a lot of money. You won’t need a big advertising budget to start doing it. But, you will need time.
Marketing with forums requires that you make regular posts that are relevant to the subject matter. If you include a link to your website and your website is not relevant to the subject of the forum, then you could find yourself being banned from posting, labeled a spammer. So, you need to be careful.
No one likes spam and it has become the bane of the internet. Link-spam is a term that has been credited to Brian Davison, an associate professor at Lehigh University, although the term was probably used by many others before he defined it. You don’t want your back-links, wherever you place them, to be considered link-spam.
Most people create forums for fun. You will be more successful if it is something that you think of as fun, even if your underlying goal is to drive more business to your website. So, choose a subject that you are truly interested in. If the subject is not relevant to your business, then consider finding a business that is relevant.
If you cannot seem to create forums that are fun and relevant to your business, then perhaps you should keep the two separate. You can always post your personal information somewhere on the forum. If your readers want to learn more about you, they may eventually follow the link to your website, even though it might not be considered a relevant hyperlink by the search engines.
Some folks look down on the idea of marketing with forums or blogs. You need to be aware of that, because your forum could get a “bad” name, if you are not providing fun or interesting information.
If you create forums with the intent of providing a fun place for people to exchange ideas and occasionally you use the discussion board to talk about your business, that’s fine. Just don’t go overboard. Marketing with forums is only successful when the people that visit are pleased with what they see. And they will only visit if you provide interesting content.