Building a running a forum question

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I am building a forum for a group that I am involved with. I want the forum to be helpful, but it would be great to make a little extra money. People say selling ad's is tough and I don't want to do Affiliate marketing, so I was thinking of maybe trying to get companies that sell products geared toward my group and giving me a % of everything sold through my site. Any other ideas?
#building #forum #question #running
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    trying to get companies that sell products geared toward my group and giving me a % of everything sold through my site
    That IS affiliate marketing - just a different approach.

    am building a forum..
    Is it completed? How many members are there? How many posts on the forum so far?

    Forums are not big money makers - the Warrior Forum is an exception because it does 'sell' ads in the marketplace. At the time this forum began selling ads there were thousands of visitors a day on this site.



    Thing is - in order to sell anything on a forum - ads, or adsense, or products...you have to have a good amount of forum traffic. Until you have that, you should focus on growing the forum and monetize it later.

    I've been mod and/or admin on multiple forums and that has been true for every one of them.
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  • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
    One forum, a few of the members take out a banner ad for their business. Not so much about making money. But as the Admin says it keeps the lights on. Consider going that route. Especially if it is a tight knit group and it relates the the forum.
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  • Profile picture of the author rocksolid123
    Thanks everybody. The site is no built yet. I know I have to get a lot of traffic to the forum before I can think about making any money, just thinking ahead. I am focusing on building a core group of people to be a part of the forum and then focus on making a little bit of money. Keep the ideas coming please.
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  • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
    Originally Posted by rocksolid123 View Post

    I am building a forum for a group that I am involved with. I want the forum to be helpful, but it would be great to make a little extra money. People say selling ad's is tough and I don't want to do Affiliate marketing, so I was thinking of maybe trying to get companies that sell products geared toward my group and giving me a % of everything sold through my site. Any other ideas?
    If your forum isn't HELPFUL, it won't be around very long. As someone who has had a forum for 21 years now, and we don't accept advertising, never have...I suggest you focus on serving your users/members the content they joined for.

    If you have expertise in your area, then you can create products to offer to the group or joint venture with them.

    If you want to start with a monetized forum, you had better have the stuff that people want and pay for.

    Advertisers won't waste money on small member forums, and unless it is relevant to your forum's topic, you're members won't like it either.

    Give first, then you will get.

    GordonJ
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  • Profile picture of the author rocksolid123
    Totally agree Gordon and I plan on giving first, like I said just thinking ahead.
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  • Profile picture of the author brettb
    I run a popular forum directory. Forums were good but most forum owners aren't into SEO/marketing/keeping spammers away so when FB came along many thought, huh, I can just move my community to FB. Never mind that they no longer own their own internet property!


    If you can get a group of people together to start the forum... this works. My friend did this in 2005 and his forum still makes enough for him to live on.



    As far as monetising a forum goes, I had a lot of success with a little modification to the phpBB page that displays forum posts. I basically did a replace on AFFILIATECOMPANYNAME with my affiliate link. You can get WordPress plugins to do this kind of thing - maybe forums have something similar. Anyway text links are gold because the person has read the content and clicked through, so they are much more committed buyers. Plus you don't wreck your forum with banner ads.
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