Should You Outsource Forum Posting?By
Forum posting is a great way to get traffic to your site. It works like this: You join a forum and put a link to your site (along with a little sales blurb) in the signature file. Then, you post on the forum and with each post you get 1) exposure and people clicking through the link to check you out, and 2) a good backlink.
Everybody knows that the more stuff you can outsource, the better. But there are some things that are tougher than others to outsource. People often ask me if it’s a good idea to outsource forum posting, so let me tell you how it works.
The answer to the question is ‘yes and no.’ It depends on your purpose in forum posting.
Posting for Search Engines or Human Beings
If you’re posting in the forum to get backlinks, I’d say go for it. You can hire a virtual assistant to make X number of posts a day and with each post, you’re getting a link back to your site.
If you’re just doing it for the backlink, the content of your posts doesn’t matter so much. You’re doing it for the search engines, which will crawl your many posts and head to your site. read on…
But actually, this isn’t truly the best forum posting strategy. If you really want to get the most out of forums, you’re not just using them for backlinks. You’re using them to interact with other people, build authority and credibility, and get exposure. In other words, you’re posting for human beings to see and follow the link, not search engine spiders.
For this purpose, I wouldn’t recommend outsourcing forum posting unless you have someone really good on the line. It has to be someone who knows the topic well, can post insightful, helpful, informative posts, and will keep in a steady routine of doing it. They have to be ‘you’ on the forum. It’s not enough for them to just post things like, ‘Great post, thanks!’
When you’re posting for backlinks, you’re taking the shotgun approach where quantity is important, not quality. Anybody can do this for you. When posting for human eyes to see, you need to go for quality. It’s actually better to do fewer posts but have them count than to just post like crazy.
Imagine if you’re one of the other forum members. If somebody leaves a quick comment that doesn’t really say much of anything, are you going to click through their link? Especially if the spelling or grammar is bad and it doesn’t seem ‘real’ somehow, you’re not going to care.
On the other hand, if there’s a real person on the forum who gives you all kinds of helpful advice, is responsive to you, and obviously knows their stuff, you might check out the link in their sig file.
How to Post on Forums
The best strategy I know of is to get into a regular routine of posting. Start each day by spending ten minutes on your forums. Spend that time reading and replying with genuine responses.
You can decide on a certain number of posts daily, but then you’ll find yourself trying to meet a quota. If you stick to a certain amount of time, you can be totally focused on it during that time and your posts will be better.
Set alerts so that if someone replies, you’ll know immediately. You can then get back onto the forum and reply in a timely way so you can keep the conversation going.
In general, be careful what you outsource. Make sure you know how to do it well yourself first, and always screen the people you hire carefully before you hire them. The reason is that your reputation is at stake.
Toby & Sam Russell
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