IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?

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Jedi Knight Muse

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So, something that we're trying to do behind-the-scenes is promote the site more in order to bring more members in who will actively participate. We have a variety of social media pages, and I have the site in some role play directories, because even though we don't have role playing on the forum, role playing is a form of writing and I've met PLENTY of role players who also write stories on the side over the years.

The Facebook page has thirty-one likes right now. The Facebook group has forty-eight members, but the group is really meant to be a backup for the rare occasion that the site goes down. I make sure to post in both the group and on the Facebook page when there's announcements to be made, or just links to different discussions. But because of Facebook's algorithms, very few people are seeing the posts. It's not as big of a deal in the Facebook group but with the Facebook page, the more page likes we get and the more comments and "likes" on posts we get, the more often those who've "liked" the page will see the posts. I've been thinking about maybe trying the "boost post" feature for $3.00, but I'm not sure yet if it's something we should try. Has anyone ever tried the "boost post" Facebook feature before for your own author pages or anything like that? How well did it work? For what it's worth, a site I'm mostly a lurker of does sponsored posts on Facebook and it seems to be working well for them.

I was thinking about maybe trying to come up with some kind of a referral system...something where if our members refer X amount of members and those X members stay active on the site for X amount of months, that person who's referred those members would get, like, a special badge or signature or something. Or maybe something entirely different from that, I'm not sure. I've never tried doing a referral system before- the only thing I've ever done is affiliates, but that's with role playing sites. We don't have any actual items beyond graphics that we can offer, so there's not much for an incentive for us to offer people who refer other people to the site or help to promote it or whatever.

We're looking to do whatever we can to promote the site for free as much as possible, and we're hoping that you guys might have ideas for how else we can promote the site and help our community grow.

Also, there are some Facebook groups that allow promotion (usually on certain days) that we've posted the link to the site to numerous times, but again, with Facebook's algorithms, it's very easy for those kinds of posts to get buried, especially if those groups have a lot of posts being made in them on a daily basis.

Is there anything else we haven't done that we could look into doing? Do you have any suggestions for some kind of a referral system or something along those lines that we could try? Have you promoted the site at all on your Facebook pages/any other sites that you visit? Do we have any published or otherwise members with author pages/websites who are willing to promote the site?


We definitely have a great group of resourceful members here, so I'm looking forward to this discussion and seeing what suggestions you guys may have!

Also, you may have noticed that we're trying something new- we're doing questions of the day, and are allowing guests to respond to these discussion posts, so please feel free to share the link with others that you think might want to join in on the discussion!

And for those who have not already joined/followed our social media sites, here are the links:

« Last Edit: July 25, 2017, 10:21:11 AM by Jedi Knight Muse »
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Jedi Knight Muse

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Re: IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2017, 10:17:04 PM »
Bumpity bump bump!
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Xanxa

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Re: IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2017, 10:19:52 PM »
I've done some more promoting on Facebook, on my own writers' page and in three groups which I frequent.  I'll do some more another day.  I'm in lots of writing-related groups on there so I'm hoping that some people will be interested in joining. 
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Jedi Knight Muse

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Re: IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2017, 01:36:04 AM »
I've done some more promoting on Facebook, on my own writers' page and in three groups which I frequent.  I'll do some more another day.  I'm in lots of writing-related groups on there so I'm hoping that some people will be interested in joining. 

Yay! That's definitely good, so thank you for doing that! I hope some of them will be interested, too. -Crosses fingers-
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JayLee

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Re: IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2017, 11:56:50 PM »
Well, word of mouth is always a huge avenue... I have tried, but not quite successful so far in gathering recruits. I'd say see if anyone already here has a website that they could post an ad on, though that only works if people actually have traffic on their sites...

Tags, all the tags. Worldsmyths needs to come up when someone google searches a fantasy writer's forum etc. And I have no idea how to do any of that, so I may just be babbling nonsense :) But, at least for me (who is lazy with the internet because technology is hard) I'm going to go through maybe four or five suggestions on google... then give up. This site needs to be near the top!

Also... I've got to thinking. I love the daily challenge idea... except that it's daily. By the time most people have seen the prompt for discussion for the day, I fear the day will be over and a new discussion will be floundering into existence. I know daily is probably a little too much for me to try and keep up with... too much info to follow... I wonder if weekly, or twice weekly may benefit... Again, I'm probably babbling. I always know I really need sleep when my posts include an excess of ellipses :)
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Sheepy-Pie

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Re: IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?
« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2017, 08:22:37 AM »
Tags, all the tags. Worldsmyths needs to come up when someone google searches a fantasy writer's forum etc. And I have no idea how to do any of that,

I have looked into it and the most I could get out of it was content. The more content up means google can obviously find more links in it. I don't know how to get it higher up when searching for fantasy forum though. (I have a wikia and without trying I managed to get it to the #1 spot when searching for [author] wiki. It's weird how it does it!)

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Jedi Knight Muse

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Re: IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2017, 11:27:28 PM »
Well, word of mouth is always a huge avenue... I have tried, but not quite successful so far in gathering recruits. I'd say see if anyone already here has a website that they could post an ad on, though that only works if people actually have traffic on their sites...

Tags, all the tags. Worldsmyths needs to come up when someone google searches a fantasy writer's forum etc. And I have no idea how to do any of that, so I may just be babbling nonsense :) But, at least for me (who is lazy with the internet because technology is hard) I'm going to go through maybe four or five suggestions on google... then give up. This site needs to be near the top!

Also... I've got to thinking. I love the daily challenge idea... except that it's daily. By the time most people have seen the prompt for discussion for the day, I fear the day will be over and a new discussion will be floundering into existence. I know daily is probably a little too much for me to try and keep up with... too much info to follow... I wonder if weekly, or twice weekly may benefit... Again, I'm probably babbling. I always know I really need sleep when my posts include an excess of ellipses :)

Yeah, I think that even with social media being such a big thing, word of mouth is still a very prominent option for getting the word out there. It means having to rely on members to get the word out there (which is why I was thinking about some kind of a referral system, but I have no idea how to make it work and make it worth it to the members..and even then, even if they recruited ten people to the forum, the difference would be between whether or not those ten people actually actively logged in and posted), so that means people needing to be willing to promote it, which I know a few people have done. Thank you for that! :D

I think something that could really help is getting people with author pages/social media/websites that have a lot of visitors to promote the site. The problem is getting people to do it as a favor, unless we somehow have something to give back in return, like...I dunno, somehow promoting their social media/website/whatever in return. I don't know many people who actually have published books (I mean, it doesn't necessarily have to be people with published books, but it would certainly help) who might do that, and it's usually helpful if they're already part of the community if they do that kind of thing. It's more awkward for me to go to the NaNo group on Facebook and be like "hey, is there anyone who'd be willing to promote a forum you're not a member of for me?" and I don't particularly want to have to do that because of how awkward it is, unless there's some way to make it less awkward.

I am in the process of working on getting us onto one website that will help a bit (actually, hopefully a lot!)...I just have to finish up my part of it, and then I'm waiting to hear back on what I have to do once I finish it. (Yes, I'm being vague on purpose. :D I'm hoping that I'll be able to reveal more details once it actually happens.) That's just one website, but at least it's in the same target audience as us. I've had to resort to advertising on role playing sites just because it's at least writing still, but it's not really the best place to be advertising. There just aren't a ton of writing forums out there these days that even ALLOW advertising.

Yeah, I have no real idea how to get the site onto the first page of Google. It's all an SEO/keywords thing, plus what @Sheepy-Pie said.

There's a forum that I recently remembered exists that basically is a massive resource for forum/website administrators, and I'm thinking of posting there asking for some suggestions on what else we could do to promote the site that won't cost a ton of money. I just have to figure out what I want to write in that post and get it posted.

Otherwise, I'm open to more ideas that anyone else might have!
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Jedi Knight Muse

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Re: IMPORTANT: suggestions needed - how else can we promote the site?
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2017, 09:19:18 AM »
Also... I've got to thinking. I love the daily challenge idea... except that it's daily. By the time most people have seen the prompt for discussion for the day, I fear the day will be over and a new discussion will be floundering into existence. I know daily is probably a little too much for me to try and keep up with... too much info to follow... I wonder if weekly, or twice weekly may benefit... Again, I'm probably babbling. I always know I really need sleep when my posts include an excess of ellipses :)

I forgot to reply to this part yesterday.

You mean the question of the days, right? The thing is that, even if we post one of them every single day, it doesn't really matter when someone is responding to it, because it keeps the conversation going, which is ultimately a good thing because it's another active thread. Even if you're responding at 2 AM, it kind of balances out because people are in different time zones anyway so they might naturally be responding at 2 AM because of that. Even if you're not responding until two days after the post has already been started, you're welcome to reply anyway.

For what it's worth, though, I think we're kind of spreading out posting them, anyway, just 'cause of how schedules have been working out. Plus it will be a little less spammy for us to spread them out so we can promote them.
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