Having trouble with promoting a debate site

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Guerrera, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    I have a community website that's just idly sitting by gathering dust while the few members I have slowly retreat into the distance.

    This was my first attempt at a community website. I come from a programming background so I designed the entire CMS and the site structure myself but perhaps jumped the gun somewhat on a concise topic and area.

    The site is supposed to be a sandbox for idealist people to discuss their ideas and host debates and discussions with other like-minded people. Back-and-forthing if you will. No topic as such as I leave the debate matter down to the individuals who use it.

    However I'm having a hard time figuring out how to promote this site as it's so general - but the very nature of my idea is for it to be an open, relatively uncensored environment where the members form the basis of the site culture.

    However, there aren't many members left, and the ones who are don't seem to be taking an active interest in participating. So I'm struggling with this broken concept.

    My site has several features which are quite unique such as the ability to retroactively ignore members and content dynamically (which I THOUGHT would give me leverage in promoting this site) but I'm finding promotion to be very difficult in my case.

    How do I proceed from here?
     
  2. AshWM

    AshWM Aspirant

    20
    1
    +0
    Promotion is always difficult, it's never easy in anyway of shape of form.
    Just keep at advertising, using signatures etc.

    You will gain traffic from somewhere and you wont realize it ;)
     
  3. GeorgeB.

    GeorgeB. ............

    3,906
    952
    +110
    How much do you know about SEO? Social Media?
     
  4. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    I'm trying my hand at social media but I'm not a natural extrovert. I'm the exact opposite. I'm finding it difficult to understand the concept of social media and how it can help me. I generally don't find the answers that people give me concrete enough to base a decision on. So I'm just 'trying things'.

    My site is alright for SEO. I don't believe in intensely scrubbing an entire website for every alt tag. I don't think it makes a huge amount of difference, as long as my basic tag structure and meta information is correct.

    I haven't done any link building, promotion or any offsite SEO apart from a few RSS directories which haven't really done anything for me but, I guess it can't hurt.
     
  5. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    I just scrapped the guest posting. Great feature but too many people were abusing it. At least before I could rely on the odd anonymous post to stimulate onsite activity.

    I don't know about now though.
     
  6. NerdForum

    NerdForum Adherent

    316
    95
    +21
    Try advertising on political or religious websites. If you want people to debate things, these are the two most common subjects. Everyone wants everyone else to share their views so it should stir up plenty of posts on your site if you get a few members who disagree.
     
  7. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    The problem being that other debate sites tend to keep their community encapsulated in some sort of 'magical adminstrative wall' that stops people from posting links or otherwise promoting another debate site. I'm trying.
     
  8. NerdForum

    NerdForum Adherent

    316
    95
    +21
    Try something like reddit. /r/politics, /r/religion, and /r/atheism.
     
  9. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    I've been skimming through reddit and honestly it looks like the biggest pile of garbage I've seen in my life. I have no idea how something like this can help me.
     
  10. RiverJ

    RiverJ Aspirant

    49
    8
    +1
    ahaahha you don't know how much I agree. I went there a few times when I was suggested to and it is so just unorganized.
     
  11. NerdForum

    NerdForum Adherent

    316
    95
    +21
    Reddit is a massive site that allows you to reference your own, much much smaller site to the public for free, and if you get enough upvotes it's a dofollow link on top of that. I've had sites that got over 3k unique in a day after posting interesting topics to the appropriate section of reddit. You just need to learn how the subreddits work and you'll see that it's actually very organized.
     
  12. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    I have a different concept of 'interesting' than most people. I also have a different concept of 'good' content. Most google searches come up with relevant content.. doesn't mean it's any good.
     
  13. NerdForum

    NerdForum Adherent

    316
    95
    +21
    If you want your forum to grow, you need things that are "interesting" and "good" to other people.
     
  14. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    To be honest, I actually hate all of my members. I detest them. I might just kill it.
     
  15. gogoblender

    gogoblender shiny happy pantless

    15,146
    1,272
    +410

    I thought relevant means... useful, meaningful...means good?

    If relevant doesn't mean good, how do you define it?

    :)

    gogo

    p.s. With small forums, it's really about the people. They're your content makers, and you should be excited to meet them every morning morning when you wake up to your forum and discover new things to talk about. If they're you're friends, your forum has the baseline of being an almost personal blog where you note stuff from your daily life and have your community to share it with, either with agreements, debates or just plain ole discussion.
     
  16. NerdForum

    NerdForum Adherent

    316
    95
    +21
    Honestly, if you hate your members you'll never grow. Part of being an admin is enjoying at least the majority of people and interacting with them on a friendly basis, especially when it comes to small forums as gogo has said.
     
  17. Rose_Wee

    Rose_Wee Aspirant

    18
    0
    +0
    You can't do this way by trial and error, reputation can be affected and no member wants to join in.

    I'm not against you or anything, I'm stating from experience as old admin and it is your forum you hold responsible to keep it well even it's not my business. Detest is a strong word, one major word from you can change a lot of lives to decide whether want to join or not.
     
  18. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    I'm much better at building the house that keeping it.
     
  19. Hayek

    Hayek Fan

    728
    397
    +38
    You hate the people who are helping you grow your forum? And you posted this on a public forum so they and anyone else can see?

    And then you wonder why you are having trouble promoting it?
     
  20. Guerrera

    Guerrera Participant

    74
    13
    +10
    I assure you, they aren't help me.
     
Verification:
Draft saved Draft deleted