How to Boost Your Business Through Online Forums



Online forums are a great way to spread the word about your business in a very casual manner to a targeted audience. If you are in a spa forum or candle making group, you know that everyone involved shares a common interest. Therefore, group and forum members are interested in what you have to say.

For most of us who sell products online, running an online business is sometimes done on a shoestring budget. There are a large number of small business owners in cottage niche markets such as homemade soaps pastries, custom perfume and aromatherapy blending.

What that means is whether we are business owners, work in the industry or are consumers, we are passionate about our business and we love to talk about it!

When using online forums, however, you can also ruin your business reputation and drive people away from your online business if you are not careful. Always remember that with forums, you are always the face of your business.

What you say in a discussion thread, how you respond to a question from a fellow group member will affect your business, directly and indirectly.

As the face of your business, this is not the place to get into hot discussion about products, debate the merits of a supplier with other forum members or blatantly advertise your business products and services.

Having said that, there are some really great ways you can use online forums to market your business, increase awareness of your products and services and skyrocket your revenues. Let me share some insider secrets! 1) Make sure you complete your profile for each forum or group that you join. Include the name of your business and the URL of your website. If there is a section to add some personal information, talk about your expertise in your industry that led you to opening your business.

2) Many forums allow you to include a unique signature tagline and sometimes a URL. While they do often frown on these being commercial links, if you are a small business that is directly related to the forum and your love for the niche, most times it is ok.

3) Be active in the forums, make a name for yourself and be accessible. Whenever you can, answer questions when queries are posted that fall into your area of expertise.

4) If a member posts looking for a product or service directly, and it is a match for your business, it is perfectly acceptable to respond with information and a link.

5) Keep your ears open for opportunities to market your business such as hosting a forum group or webinar within your special interest group’s membership.

Online Forums are a very organic way to market your business to people who are generally interested in what you sell. Just be certain to follow the rules, remain neutral at all times, be an active member and always be on the look-out for great marketing opportunities within each forum.

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