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what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Thu Feb 28, 2013 3:35 am
by rustys86
I run a sort of social networking site that also uses a phpBB3 forum. I anticipate that there will be normal ups and downs in terms of site activity. I'm afraid that any doldrums will be magnified by the lack of forum activity during that time. What I mean is that without the forum people can't really tell if there is little interaction on the site because they can safely assume it's all going on in things like private messages but with the forum, members will see that there hasn't been a post or new thread for x amount of time and sort of declare to themselves "this place is dead", even though it really isn't, and then just move on. Does anyone have any ideas on how to protect against this or revitalize when it happens, maybe something like moving old posts to archive or something?

thanks

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Thu Feb 28, 2013 4:38 am
by Lumpy Burgertushie
my suggestion would be first , don't worry about it.

or

make the board/site stay busy. It is up to you and your members to keep the place hopping.

visit your board daily, post daily and often. go out and find new content to post on the site,

make it "THE" place to go for info about whatever your site is about.

robert

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 5:38 am
by Big-Jim
Apparently the site is busy, it is just that the members are communicating thru private messaging rather than thru regular posting. Maybe the members who are doing the private messaging don't want the things they are discussing to be public, maybe they prefer to keep it just between themselves.

I realize the opening poster wants to run a busy forum, not a private messaging service. Possible he could send a PM to the members and explain to them that they really need to start making at least a couple posts each day or he will have to shut down the forum. I would hate to have to do that, it just seems like a bad idea, but under the circumstances I don't really see where there is much of an alternative. He has members visiting the site every day, but they are only using the site to send private messages to each other. So what else can he do?

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:36 am
by Lumpy Burgertushie
why would he need to shut down the site just because the members are using the PM?

maybe it isn't the way he was hoping for, but apparently the members like to use the board so why shut it down.


robert

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:00 pm
by Big-Jim
He has a forum where nobody is posting, or at least very few of the members are posting. A forum where nobody posts looks like a "dead forum" and who wants to be become a member of a "dead forum"? If he has advertising on the forum, who wants to pay for advertising when it looks like nobody is visiting the forum? No matter how you slice it, a forum where nobody is making posts is pretty much a dead issue. So why would he want to continue to pay hosting costs in order to have a forum where nobody comes and makes posts?

If he is charging for membership, that is another issue. But if it is a free forum open to everyone, then I stand behind what I said.

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Sat Mar 02, 2013 3:19 pm
by Dogs and things
Why not remove the PM-feature altogether?

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 3:33 am
by Big-Jim
Removing the PM feature is certainly one way to stop his problem, but it could potentially cause him other problems. Problems like members leaving the forum and not coming back. I suppose in one that isn't really a problem, since they weren't posting anyway who cares if they leave? But I suspect he wants to keep the members, he just wants them to start posting again. Quite frankly, I am at a loss as to what the best way is to go about trying to fix the problem. No matter what he does he will no doubt upset a significant portion of the members.

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 2:31 am
by rustys86
Big-Jim nailed it, no one wants to become a member of a dead forum and I think even more than that people who are already members would leave if they didn't see much posting because they use that as there only gauge even though members might still be visiting (PMs and viewing other content). They'll assume that no one's around and subsequently send less PMs. I don't know if this is a good idea but I was thinking at times suspending the forum for a while and then reopening with the old threads moved to an archive of sorts would rejuvenate it.

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 2:51 am
by Peter77sx
Maybe you have to choose between running a "socialnetworking" site and forums. You might be attracting users to teh site who come home after a long day and want to micro post things and not get dragged into long forum discussions.

Re: what to do when your forum slows down

Posted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:08 pm
by Dog Cow
rustys86 wrote: Does anyone have any ideas on how to protect against this or revitalize when it happens
Sign up a couple of new user accounts and use them to stimulate discussion.