I have been running a forum for just under a year and find myself having to post multiple times a day under fake usernames just to start some kind of discussion. I have 1 person helping me.
I can say with almost certainty that it would be mostly idle without my own input.
I know it is very difficult to get a forum off the ground and I am trying but it is a real slog at times. I don't mind seeding topics, I just don't want to spend every minute of the day worrying if my forum looks like a ghost town.
I am very interested to hear how others have finally got their community off the ground. I have 2000 members but most don't post and those who do post seem to do in dribs and drabs.
2000 members and your still making fake postings! I've got a forum running with 168 and whilst its not flying along it does get used and is building up slowly
I would say you need to look at the section / topics to find out why your members aren't contributing, also marketing a forum is not that dissimilar to any other site so make sure the forum is well optimised and is pulling traffic
are these 2000 members logging into the forum? or did they just join once then leave
Wizs, here's a thread that's a few years old but still has plenty of good info on this exact topic: [webmasterworld.com...]
The one thing that has changes is social media. Integrating your forum to allow posts to be easily posted to Twitter and Facebook will help generate traffic.
I agree that 2K members should be able to sustain a conversation. Sometimes, forums end up being just problem-solving, and a person shows up once, posts, gets an answer (or not), and never returns. If that is the case for you, getting a core group of posters will be essential. Newbies will get helped, and some will stick around if there is an active community.
Thanks for the comments, I have been reading them along with the related threads here.
I have been finding that maintaining my forum was frankly a pain in the backside. A lot of the content on the forum was already on my 'main' site, and the nature of the discussion was mainly 'thank you' because it was a user-contributed offers forum. This means a lack of discussion on real issues, although they sometimes did occur.
I think had my forum been in another niche it would perhaps have taken off much sooner.
I had a serious think the other night and decided to call it a day and stick to my content site without the forum attached. It will free up a considerable amount of my time, so this is the route I have opted to take.
I suppose that is what's good about the internet, you can give it a shot and if it doesn't work, no harm done. Well nobody was posting much so I doubt they will miss it, especially since they still have access to the content elsewhere on my site.