The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

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andy-w
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by andy-w » Thu Nov 29, 2007 3:29 am

drathbun wrote: That comment was certainly not called for. Please keep the personal stuff out of the discussion, thanks.
Also, if you're going to quote someone, you have to uncheck the "Disable BBCode" option when you post.
Actually it was called for.

But thank you for pointing out BBcode had gone off - I must have clicked it somewhere along the line.

Andy

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Avaya
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by Avaya » Thu Nov 29, 2007 5:22 am

bbrian, thanks for all of the tips! They are greatly appreciated. :) :)
My website: SixSeventyOne.net
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ScrapbookSupplies
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by ScrapbookSupplies » Thu Nov 29, 2007 2:55 pm

Our site is little, so little that I wont embarass myself by putting our stats, LOL.

Anyway, we started by offering goodie bags and surprise gifts related to our forum topic to new users. This worked out well all the way around because new members actually received something tangible that they could use, we got rid of inventory that we couldn't sell or things that vendors gave us for free (if you tell your vendors what your doing many will give you freebies to give away), and most of the members stuck around. The postage and cost of the items (if it came from stock) is a tax write off too. And, we did have a small issue with some hit and run posters, coming in to register for the free stuff and disappear, though we remedied that by ammending the policy to new, active users get a little something - and the goodies end at user #100. Then as a further reward we created a user group for the members that really stuck it out and have been super-dooper active (bascially making the board) and offered to them once per quarter an order where they could buy something at cost plus 10% plus shipping.

These both proved to be beneficial for us, as Google Ads broke us quickly and only brought us spammers. Pay Per click didn't do much justice either - so we were stuck. This past month we also started a promo of the best layout of the month (basically the best picture in the gallery) and the winner gets a biography page that will promote them, including links to their galleries and other stuff, which has really generated alot of competition, equaling much more activity within the board.

Maybe these little tid bits may be of help to others. In the meantime, I am going to keep watching to see what all others are doing for more tips that we can try too.

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bbrian017
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by bbrian017 » Thu Nov 29, 2007 4:26 pm

Avaya wrote:bbrian, thanks for all of the tips! They are greatly appreciated. :) :)

No problem. It's pretty much the little things I learned from many forums I'm at! Something else I wanted to mention regarding advertising your forums and I forgot. Make sure to use the same user name or handle at all the sites you're at. This will develop a sense of trust with the users and also will help you get noticed by many people. Now you don't have to do this but it has worked out great for me!

Best of luck

ScrapbookSupplies
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by ScrapbookSupplies » Thu Nov 29, 2007 4:37 pm

bbrian017 wrote: Make sure to use the same user name or handle at all the sites you're at. This will develop a sense of trust with the users and also will help you get noticed by many people. Now you don't have to do this but it has worked out great for me!

Best of luck
WOW! You're right. I do this and have mentioned it to others, but it really does make a HUGE difference. I use my same screen name and *try* to use the same avatar whenever possible. ;)

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Dog Cow
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by Dog Cow » Thu Nov 29, 2007 9:52 pm

andy-w wrote:
I'm sure your site is very nice - but I can't seem to see it past your ego.

Andy
Well, that's just too bad.... because my web host is really awful and my site has been down for the past two days. :P

Looks like the joke's one me, I thought it would be back up today... :x
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NightSky
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by NightSky » Fri Nov 30, 2007 6:27 pm

Nice thread, thanks for all the nice advices, i'll try to follow them :lol:

andy-w
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by andy-w » Sat Dec 01, 2007 8:01 am

drathbun wrote: So why don't you educate us? ;-) Tell us how you manage to allow guests to post without verification or captcha and still are immune to the posting bots?
Since I've just been accused of not "putting up" in a PM I thought I'd just point out to everyone that I posted a pretty decent long post here explaining how I configure my board to enable guest posting and other stuff.

My response WAS here but seems to have been deleted so that I can be attacked in private for not doing so.

A not very impressed Andy.

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Jim_UK
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by Jim_UK » Sat Dec 01, 2007 10:06 am

There is a way of doing this that I came across a while back. Sadly I do not have the authors username to give credit to.

Code: Select all

No captcha, no complex verification, etc. Just enable "multipart/form-data" enctype in posting form and do a check for this content type in your posting handler.

I think there are not so much spam software programmers who did the "multipart/form-data" in their POST hadler. So we enable this content-type in our form and check whether post was posted using this content-type.

There are no changes for your users with standard web browsers. But for automated software it will be a big problem to compose POST data using this content-type.

1. Edit form template
templates/your_style/posting_body.tpl:
find the "form" tag and add enctype="multipart/form-data":

<form action="{S_POST_ACTION}" method="post" name="post" onsubmit="return checkForm(this)" enctype="multipart/form-data">

2. Edit the posting handler to enable content type check
I'm not sure about version, but my patch looks like that
Code:
posting.php line 560
   switch ( $mode )
   {
      case 'editpost':
      case 'newtopic':
      case 'reply':
         $username = ( !empty($HTTP_POST_VARS['username']) ) ? $HTTP_POST_VARS['username'] : '';
         $subject = ( !empty($HTTP_POST_VARS['subject']) ) ? trim($HTTP_POST_VARS['subject']) : '';
         $message = ( !empty($HTTP_POST_VARS['message']) ) ? $HTTP_POST_VARS['message'] : '';
         $poll_title = ( isset($HTTP_POST_VARS['poll_title']) && $is_auth['auth_pollcreate'] ) ? $HTTP_POST_VARS['poll_title'] : '';
         $poll_options = ( isset($HTTP_POST_VARS['poll_option_text']) && $is_auth['auth_pollcreate'] ) ? $HTTP_POST_VARS['poll_option_text'] : '';
         $poll_length = ( isset($HTTP_POST_VARS['poll_length']) && $is_auth['auth_pollcreate'] ) ? $HTTP_POST_VARS['poll_length'] : '';
         $bbcode_uid = '';

+         if(!eregi('^multipart/form\-data',trim($_SERVER['CONTENT_TYPE'])))
+         {
+            echo "Spam not accepted. Go away.";
+            exit();
+         }

         prepare_post($mode, $post_data, $bbcode_on, $html_on, $smilies_on, $error_msg, $username, $bbcode_uid, $subject, $message, $poll_title, $poll_options, $poll_length); 
If someone who is a programmer could perhaps take a look at it but I tested it with the xrummer bot and it failed to post.


Jim
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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by ElbertF » Sat Dec 01, 2007 11:30 am

I suppose this works well for individuals but not on a big scale, it's very easy for bots to adapt.

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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by wildcatforums » Mon Dec 10, 2007 10:21 pm

I don't know if this will help or not, but I created a forum for my home town community. It is closed now, just because I hadn't had time to deal with it. But it was highly active for over 2 years. It still would be, if I hadn't called it quits. I had over 700 members, and like 678 was from my home town, and the rest from a nearby town. So, my point is...tell your friends/family/co-workers/co-co workers/the mailman/etc.

It really helps. I gave out community flyers and on my forum, I gave prizes for posting and stuff, like $10 to the highest poster in the month of January, etc. My forum grew like wildfire, because I offered stuff, and I made the word spread!

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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by joni » Tue Dec 11, 2007 5:38 pm

The subject has to be appealing so that new members will WANT to join in the discussions. And it does help if the board itself looks inviting - headers, topics set out in proper order, easy to navigate etc etc. :)

candysoo18
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Re:

Post by candysoo18 » Wed Dec 12, 2007 12:42 pm

Anon wrote:By not posting support questions in the wrong fourms 8)
Agree..It seems everyone understands the purpose of how to use the forum properly so they'll not be blocked out...anyway, I had this site called <spam link removed> and what they had is that they have freebies for the users during holidays. What they did is that they post contents to forums that would interest they're users.

Today, you can grab a holiday widget christmas tree where you can send and tell your friends all about it...Say greetings or virtual gifts and the best part is that you can open it only on christmas eve. How's that eh? :D ..They also have captions in their pictures so that once the users liked it they would just go to their site...Try it and you'll see the difference..

Hope it helps to anyone interested in this matter. :mrgreen:
Last edited by ChrisRLG on Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: removed spam link - was NOT required for DISCUSSION : ChrisRLG

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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by X-Reaper » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:16 am

Eh I need for my site/forum to grow, Ive only got 15 members and I am pov ( No money! ) what do I do?! :(

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Re: The hardest question of all... how do you get new users?

Post by ElbertF » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:21 am

Reading the ten pages in this topic is probably a good start. :P

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