Online Marketing Forum

 

 

 

Online Marketing Forums: the good, the bad and the ugly

In this age of high tech, information is at no shortage. While online marketing forums offer an endless fountain of knowledge, how do you know what works and what will turn into a search engine marketing disaster? 

Finding the Goldilocks of the online marketing forum world is key and can directly impact your success. Having a sounding board or a group of professional peers that identify with your experiences is invaluable. Contributors and the information they offer can make or break the site, but it’s really the moderators that should jump in with impactful resources that will add value.

Not all forums are created equally, some are created with the sole purpose of generating a cash flow, with little or no concern with how much useful information is posted. They commonly consist of un-moderated threads with topics that seem to drift off into an abyss. These are easily spotted by the ridiculous amount of non relevant ads that are placed all over the page. Furthermore, the offensive site is riddle with the worse advice on topics like social media marketing and search engine marketing. I like to call them the get rich quick schemes of online marketing… Lots of words with little results.

A great forum will welcome you in and give you a voice. A voice to ask questions, gain knowledge and give advice to those who are equally excited about giving and receiving.

Navigating through the do's and don'ts can be a daunting task. Scrolling through endless lines of recommendations and complaints can leave,even the most seasoned of us, exhausted. Start by understanding what type of online marketing forums are out there and determine what you can gain from joining one.

 

Caveat emptor (buyer beware); live by these words while scouting for forums.


 

For all any of us know this is the person sitting on the other side of the computer. Directly under their name it says that they’ve posted 5,000 times, This must make them credible, right? Wrong. Here’s the ugly. Some online marketing forums are scams. I don’t know if they were created to be scams or just evolved into a down right scary place to be…… I’m talking dark alley on Halloween scary.  With almost every post luring you into a new software or false promises that will definitely work “or your money back, I promise”.

We’ve all be there, looking for a tool that will take our social media marketing to new heights. Or, a fancy new algorithm for search engine marketing optimization. The harsh reality is finding that gem on an online marketing forum will most likely not happen. If by some miracle it does happen you will undoubtedly  have to go through a number of cons to find it. My advice is not to go looking for the next big thing, determine your specific goal.

If you happen to enter an online marketing forum that is more interested in selling you something than providing useful information, run. Run fast and don’t look back. I promise you’re not missing anything other than abusive behavior and a huge waste of time.

On to the bad…..

A true story from one of the popular online marketing forums:

A person asked for advice on their website, a top commentator posted that they would put a few more adds on but other than that, the site was great.

The commentator had over 6,000 post, which made them appear reputable. However, after looking over the site, I quickly realized that post do not equal knowledge. The site was horrible, riddled with beginner mistakes. Lesson learned? Caveat emptor, make research your number one priority. Ask questions about where others are getting their knowledge, so that you can gauge the source for yourself.


The worst type of bad advice is from someone who is completely sure they are correct. You’ll find that some commentators on online marketing forums really believe in the advice they are giving, which in itself adds some level of credibility. Don’t take someone else's overconfidence as a sign of knowledge. Those who offer advice and the method used to reach such conclusions are the most valuable posters on any online marketing forum. They’re not just interested in leading you to the lake, they want to teach you how to fish! They are, and not by chance, the most successful at online marketing, because they’re doers. Selecting an online marketing forum is much like selecting any other group of people you associate yourself with. Dedicated individuals interested in success and growth, who understand this is best achieved with a network of other like minded individuals.

Getting into finding the good…. A firm understanding of what you're looking for is essential. Do you want to network? If so, the best type of online marketing forum will be one with a good amount of newcomers. You’ll have the opportunity to establish yourself as a helper, that gives sound knowledgeable advice. Please use your power wisely, fact check your own advice and don’t pass along pipe dreams. After all, you can move on and change your name, but there’s nothing like having a pile of good karma from helping others. I digress….

Perhaps, you have a specific question and need help.

Asking great questions is an underestimated way of establishing a following in an online marketing forum. Before you ask, yes, there is a correct way to ask a question in a forum. Keep your questions both specific and minimal. Noting your overall goal, what you’ve tried and what you found to have not worked and why. Anyone reading your question will have a understanding of what information to provide any order to help. If the question is really long or advanced break it down into sections and post accordingly.

An effective starting point on your quest to finding the best online marketing forum for you is a simple search within your favorite search engine. Start with the following two terms : “the worst online marketing forums” and “the best online marketing forums”.

This will produce pages of sites that have done most of the work for you and listed their reviews. You’ll also find a decent number of online marketing forums that come up within the search as well. When you see a site that interest you, search the name of the site and add the word “reviews”, to see what other think of it. Pay special attention to online marketing forums that are attached to a parent site. In some cases, such forums are run with the overall goal of promoting their product. This doesn’t mean you won’t find good information and support their; but you should be aware of the bias, if any should exist.  

You can also run a search for “forum search engine”. They allow you to specify your niche and some allow you to search according to keywords.  This can be extremely helpful, when planning social media marketing or search engine marketing campaigns.