Benefits of creating a forum
Running a forum is an excellent way of creating a community. It can be a place for people to discuss issues, share knowledge, and talk about you, your product, or your service. In the long-term, providing a way for your users to be part of a community can prove to be invaluable in terms of search engine optimization, customer satisfaction, customer retention, brand awareness, customer support, and viral promotion.
As an added benefit, monetizing your forum can create an entirely new source of income. Some monetization strategies include:
Donations from users - You may be able to raise a substantial amount of money by asking your users to donate as little as $1 each through a simple payment method such as PayPal.
Access Fee - You can require that users pay a membership fee for access to the forum. More information.
Advertising - Place advertisements, such as Chitika or ValueClick, on your forum or RSS feed to monetize your traffic. Website Toolbox charges $0.20 CPM, while ad networks can earn you $1.00 CPM or more, allowing you to earn money from your forum.
Affiliate Programs - As the forum owner, you are a trusted expert in your field, so you can recommend products and services as an affiliate to your visitors directly on your forum or via rare and well-planned emails.
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