Using Twitter to Generate Forum Traffic

JulieVA

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JulieVA submitted a new Article:

Using Twitter to Generate Forum Traffic


Why Twitter?


Twitter is an excellent marketing tool and it can be used to drive traffic to your forum FREE.

The first thing to do is build a good Twitter following after your forum has a certain amount of relevant content.

Twitter users can help keep your forum rich with content (and even help create new content) because Twitter users tend to be highly interactive and topic / interest driven. BUT if they visit your site and no content is there, they will quickly click away as most visitors will.

The Basics

This is good baseline information about doing building your Twitter following:

Here are 4 simple tips to finding your own Twitter traffic

1) Find People To Follow ~ The search bar in Twitter will assist you in finding people who are interested in the same topics, markets, hobbies or locations as you. You just have to type in what you are looking for and hit enter! You want to start following people, consistently, every day!

2) Follow People Back Who Follow You ~ Do you like to be ignored? Probably not, the same concept applies on Twitter. When people follow you, follow them back. Now I don't necessarily mean everyone because there are spammers out there on Twitter and you very likely do not want their information showing up in your Twitter stream. Develop your own criteria for who you will follow back. Two of the biggest reasons I will unfollow someone are vulgar language and tweets too much. When I see someone who has 3,021 followers but has tweeted 12, 358 times you can be assured I will unfollow or not even follow in the first place. As you spend time looking through your own Twitter stream you will develop your own reasons for unfollowing people.

3) Reply to Those Who ReTweet your Tweets ~ this is actually one of your goals on Twitter. You have started a conversation, Excellent, now let's keep it going. You can reply in any way that is applicable to the re-tweet. Depending upon how much room you have you can RT the entire RT or you can just say thanks. Either way by not responding you are missing out on an excellent opportunity to connect with someone and possibly start that business relationship.

4) ReTweet Other People ~ Find people who interest you, other experts in your market or people who provide great information in a complimentary market and re-tweet them. Not only will...
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A

AWS

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I like to see stats other Twitter followers to back up the claims that you get new users signing up and actively posting on your forum.

Twitter does drive a ton of traffic to your site when you tweet. In my experience that traffic never converted to signups or increased user activity. If you want a boat load of useless traffic then Twitter is great. If you want actual people that will join and participate then you'll be wasting your time.

I used to have my tech site tied with a Twitter account. I tracked how that traffic converted to return visitors and new registration. After 2 years I dropped Twitter because less than 1% of that massive traffic converted. This was no small site, 770K posts, with plenty of content so that was not the problem.
 

GTB

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I like to see stats other Twitter followers to back up the claims that you get new users signing up and actively posting on your forum.

Twitter does drive a ton of traffic to your site when you tweet. In my experience that traffic never converted to signups or increased user activity. If you want a boat load of useless traffic then Twitter is great. If you want actual people that will join and participate then you'll be wasting your time.

I used to have my tech site tied with a Twitter account. I tracked how that traffic converted to return visitors and new registration. After 2 years I dropped Twitter because less than 1% of that massive traffic converted. This was no small site, 770K posts, with plenty of content so that was not the problem.
I wouldn't disagree that conversion to member signups is terrible with twitter, but then isn't that the case with most social buttons used if being honest, as people tend to be on those social sites to use them and not some forum? What it can do is help get your topics spread further around the web and also help with getting them indexed faster because a lot of other bots crawl twitter indexing that content elsewhere, following links e.t.c.

Have you never stumbled across another site and spotted something from your twitter account is listed on it, one of your tweets, as an example.

You also need to utilize twitter better really, having a tweet this TOPIC is fine, but a lot better if you have tweet this POST (all your forum posts), not just topics. Think of the LIKES system XenForo has for posts, a person likes a post and it stops on your forum only as a LIKE shown (fun factor, but not very useful overall). Tweet this post doesn't only show a "tweet count" on the forum so another member knows somebody liked their post(s) - but also sends it into the persons twitter account who liked it, thus giving your forum that bit of extra coverage.

Also keep in mind. If you're only tweeting topics into twitter and had 10 topics listed, each with 10 post replies made. You only have 10 tweets that can be sent into twitter, I have 100 tweet possibilities for much better forum coverage. That equates on a Big Board with thousands of threads listed to a far, far greater chance you'll see other twitter accounts listing tweets leading back to your forum content. In your case mnetioned above, you could of had 770k tweet chances - but how many topic only tweets?
 
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JulieVA

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I like to see stats other Twitter followers to back up the claims that you get new users signing up and actively posting on your forum.

Twitter does drive a ton of traffic to your site when you tweet. In my experience that traffic never converted to signups or increased user activity. If you want a boat load of useless traffic then Twitter is great. If you want actual people that will join and participate then you'll be wasting your time.

I used to have my tech site tied with a Twitter account. I tracked how that traffic converted to return visitors and new registration. After 2 years I dropped Twitter because less than 1% of that massive traffic converted. This was no small site, 770K posts, with plenty of content so that was not the problem.
I wholeheartendly disagree with your assessment that Twitter is a waste of time.

I will decline your request to show you my forum traffic stats; however, I will share that my Guest Writer Program is booked entirely through Twitter and most of my Advertising Program clients (9 out of 10) find my programs through Twitter. On my intake forms, there is a question which says "How did you hear about this program?" Almost every answer is Twitter.

Just because Twitter did not work for one niche or one person in a niche, doesn't mean Twitter will not work for others. Is it possible that the tech niche is filled with people who don't like to interact via forums or did not like your particular forum? What were your tweets like? Were you tweeting impactful / attention grabbing messages? Was your forum conent the right type of content to attract people who wanted to converse about what was there or did your content tend to attract "lurkers" (people who read without sharing)?

There are so many facets of this. But make no mistake, Twitter can be used to build a sucessful forum.
 

JulieVA

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I wouldn't disagree that conversion to member signups is terrible with twitter, but then isn't that the case with most social buttons used if being honest, as people tend to be on those social sites to use them and not some forum? What it can do is help get your topics spread further around the web and also help with getting them indexed faster because a lot of other bots crawl twitter indexing that content elsewhere, following links e.t.c.

Have you never stumbled across another site and spotted something from your twitter account is listed on it, one of your tweets, as an example.

You also need to utilize twitter better really, having a tweet this TOPIC is fine, but a lot better if you have tweet this POST (all your forum posts), not just topics. Think of the LIKES system XenForo has for posts, a person likes a post and it stops on your forum only as a LIKE shown (fun factor, but not very useful overall). Tweet this post doesn't only show a "tweet count" on the forum so another member knows somebody liked their post(s) - but also sends it into the persons twitter account who liked it, thus giving your forum that bit of extra coverage.

Also keep in mind. If you're only tweeting topics into twitter and had 10 topics listed, each with 10 post replies made. You only have 10 tweets that can be sent into twitter, I have 100 tweet possibilities for much better forum coverage. That equates on a Big Board with thousands of threads listed to a far, far greater chance you'll see other twitter accounts listing tweets leading back to your forum content. In your case mnetioned above, you could of had 770k tweet chances - but how many topic only tweets?
Great comment.

Our Mom Spot has a plug in which tweets the title of every new topic from certain boards. Refreshed every 15 minutes. The staff is required to start a certain number of topics each week & they are asked to use keywords in all topic titles.

For the topics which members start, I will re-engineer the titles to include hashtagged keywords and an attention grabbing statement or a provicative question then link to the topic when I am settig up my weekly auto tweets. Works like a charm.

These techniques result in traffic for my forum at all times of the day & night.

If you look at the posts in my forum, 99% of members have a Twitter name in their signature. It's a fillable profile element & so many choose to fill it in! This communicates to me that Twitter is important to people in my niche - I'd be a fool to ignore that.
 

JulieVA

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I would like to add a word about content.

When I first started my forum I thought I had the right content, but I didn't.

Sometimes it takes time to learn what your niche wants to see.
 

JulieVA

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We're at 10.3 THOUSAND Twitter followers after just a few days. We'll likely be at 11K in two weeks.

This week we're running a Read Across America event and one of our pictures made it to the "top" list on Twitter (The Book Spot): https://twitter.com/search?src=typd&q=#ReadAcrossAmerica The pic is embedded with a link to our site. The significance is a solid uptick in traffic, log ins, etc.

Take a look at our tweets...the interaction, brief personal contacts, invitations to click our links, use of keywords, etc: https://twitter.com/OurMomSpot

Don't underestimate Twitter!
 

Flexin

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Nice post. Because of this I'm finally going to try Hootsuite. How are you adding posts? Are you hand picking them and then doing setting up the posts or are you using the rss feed? I was going to set up the feed but I don't want every post to be sent out. I was hoping it would allow me to go in and select which ones to send out and when.

James
 

JulieVA

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Great question Flexin!

Use this: https://twitterfeed.com/users/new

We use it to automatically tweet new forum topics from certain boards. This is why my staff is required to post a minimum of two new topics each week and their topic titles must include hastagged keywords.

In addition to this, I use hootsuite every Sunday to manually schedule tweets for the coming week. If the scheduling is done in a cartain way, all tweets look organic - espcially with the twitterfeed doing its job. :)
 
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zonal1

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The members of my forum who follows me at twitter;
won't they be irritated if I tweet too much & flood their notifications?
 

Flexin

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The members of my forum who follows me at twitter;
won't they be irritated if I tweet too much & flood their notifications?
I think that is something to worry about if a member has mobile alerts setup. If I follow an account from my phone it will set up mobile alerts automatically. Some accounts will sent out 20 tweets in a row it can drive me nuts. I just remove the mobile alerts for accounts like that.

But if your your setting then up in advance then
you can set it up so that it isn't flooding
someone's account. Just spread them out

James
 

dethfire

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I applaud those who can cover multiple social media sites with a popular community. I've tried and it's too exhausting. Plus I don't enjoy it. I think that's why I failed with twitter.
 

Alfa1

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it needs to be automatic, otherwise its just too much effort and there is too little time to keep up with it.
 
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