What is the best way to populate a new forum? I've just started a new vB at http://truegamers.co.uk/ and at the moment I've got a total of 3 members (i'm one of them, and the other is a friend from work).
You could circulate emails at where you work, make sure your meta tags/search engine parameters are up to date so that someone searching for games help/forum would see your site quite high, give someone good advice and a freindly response and they will keep coning back. Thats why sitepoint is so popular, I did a search onlearning asp and found the sitepoint community :-).
Hi, thank you for the advice? did you look at the site yourself? at the moment it's only a forum but over the next month i'll be adding more features like games reviews, hints and tips, and whatever else my members want.
As for mailing everyone in the company, it's only a very small company, and almost everyone here knows about it already, but i have posted a message on my other sites about it
As for Meta Tag info, that will all be sorted when the main site goes live and I start adding it to search engines
Also make sure you change your signatures at any forums you visit and in your e-mail program to include a link to your community.
I visited your page and the thing that really confused me is that I didn't see any obvious link to the forums! People aren't going to want to read all that text just to find out how to get in, and the labelling you have on that button isn't clear at all.
Another thing to do is start some interesting threads that peoplel will want to contribute to. Controversial topics are sure to attract opinions. You could also try surveys and polls and things like that to get people talking.
Good comments thank you, as for that main page, that will be gone soon, I just needed to add it to the site so that my boss could see it, because the forum is only stange one of the site, when stage 2 comes out (15th november) the front page will be more of the classic approach of what people would be used it ie. Top news, Top posts, Hot games, Hot threads, etc...
I must admit that I've already got somthing like the controversial topic going at the moment, I've signed up a fake user, which i'll be using at the start to help populate the site, and it his him who will be asking all of these questions and stuff
Again, thank you for the input, and please feel free to keep you eyes on the site over the next couple of weeks because the ideas that I've got for it are quite good (I think anyway )
Like many sites are when they first start out, you are desperate for members and participation.
Contact all your friends with Internet access and an interest in your site's topic and get them to post.
Post yourself, often. If you are often, it will motivate others to be, as well. You are the leader.
If you are really desperate, register with multiple names and start conversations with yourself. As crazy as it sounds, you will be more likely to attract new members if they see at least a few posts rather than the dreaded 0 amount.
As Megan pointed out, make sure to include your signature in all your forum signatures, like right here at SPF.
Lastly, search on Google for forum directories and add yours. There are hundreds out there - it will help.
I would also suggest that you reply to every single post that your users make with a question, so that they feel inclined to answer... very few people will ever NOT answer a question that they've been asked in a forum and it will make them talk sooo much more...
The best way to start out a new forum is to post in forums that are of the same subject matter... just go in with your own signature for your forum and post away and post away frequently
Another thing that you can do, which works really well, is give yourself about 4 or 5 names and just constantly talk to yourself in the forums.. Talk intelligently about any given subject and pick fights with yourself... the other visitors to your site will pick sides and soon will be part of the community and posting frequently..
Hi, thank you for your advice, I had a big boom of posts on the day that it opened, but since then it has been dead, oh well, I'll make some more posts, and maybe email all of my users so far and ask if they wanna come back for a second round
no, sorry, you will have to do better than that, I'm guessing here, but I feel that you don't believe in the paranormal, maybe you are the perfect person to join the forum, after all, eerie is there to allow people to share views on the paranormal, and if you can come up with some interesting arguments against paranormal activity, then i'd love to hear them