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Gaffney

Content is the key

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Forums are websites where people come to please their minds. So if you have a forum or your setting one up content is your number one concern. But what is content?


The three main versions of forum content:

1. Content can be a platform to share your work or views.
2. Content can be information to help you.
3. Content can be entertainment.

Often I find forums or websites that have no content. No basis to really share my work or views, no helpful information, either none at all or information I can find anywhere else. Or no entertainment/no entertainment I can't find anywhere else. So if you want to have a successful forum then you need to fill at least one of these fields.

Number 1 is the hardest for most people unless you can feed a lot of traffic to the site that will attract people to share content.

Number 2 and number 3 are easier, they are similar but not the same thing. Some people get confused, a lot of people come to forums just to get information like how to be really good at playing a game. How to fix a common software fault etc.

So if your forum is pointed towards a niche where people want helpful information from it. Your number one concern before forum software, look, promotion etc is how to offer unique #2 content for that niche.

If your forum isn't really a niche eg gaming then your probably better focusing on entertainment but it might be a good idea to also offer a lot of useful unique information on a niche. Some gaming forums start with a clan that you can join into or people who are good with games and can offer a lot of advice with games.

This might seem really obvious but this could help some people. Without one of these three points your forum will not succeed. If you cannot offer these points but have the technical ability to set up a good looking forum, try getting some people to come with you that can produce this content.


My site currently has 220,000 posts, 9000 members, 4,700 twitter followers and 4,900 facebook likes. My niche is a certain football club. I've got into this position by offering good helpful information on the team, helpful facts, good views, a place so they can share their views with other people(be social). I've also offered a lot of multimedia for the niche, graphics and videos. So I've offered a lot of different aspects of content then I've promoted it and made it really easy to get, view and use with good forum layout, good software, plugins and look.

You can never have enough content, try to pace out your content(it's not easy). If you burst out loads of content in one day, a lot of it might be missed and people will then be left with no content for eg the rest of the week. If you have big gaps between content then people won't use your forum. Try to offer content at peak times and make sure there is plenty of content for people to consume daily.

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"Content"...pages? posts? media? blogs?



All of the above I imagine but some more detailed advice would be great.



This tutorial was information about what the very basic meaning of website content.

Platform to share and talk about your views(social/big community)
Helpful information.
Entertainment.

Content at the very base is one of these, then the next step is how to provide your content. Forum software, the design, the way you promote your site, put content up via blogs, topics, videos, audio, custom pages and so on.

I could make a tutorial about how to make the best blog system in the world and produce several blogs a day full with information. But that doesn't matter if your content isn't very unique and doesn't have an overall plan.

For example you can't set up a gaming site and just produce content through other stuff you find on the web. If your site is small and your content isn't unique, there is a big chance that the people visiting have already seen the same content elsewhere or content like it.

The overall aim of it was for people to look into what content their going to make and if it's good enough to drag people in.

Look at your competitors, what content do they put out, how long does it take to come out, how do people like to get it, what content do they not have that you could add. Could you create unique content on a regular basis?

It's not easy making a successful site, you need good content in the correct format, you need to produce it often and at the correct moments.





You can't just tell someone what content to produce and how to do it as they say in Inception:




Never recreate from your memory. Always imagine new places!



True inspiration is impossible to fake.



What is the most resilient parasite? Bacteria? A virus? An intestinal worm? An idea. Resilient... highly contagious. Once an idea has taken hold of the brain it's almost impossible to eradicate. An idea that is fully formed - fully understood - that sticks; right in there somewhere.

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If the tables to be used as keys are fixed and their contents do not change you could build a SHA2 digest on demand in a newindex metamethod for t and use the digest as the real key. The digest would be cached in another table indexed by the real tables.

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When it comes to content, the most important word to take away from Gaffney's topic, in my opinion, is "unique." Gaffney used that word twice. I agree that rich, dynamic content is king, but it means nothing (okay, very little) if it's not unique. Google LOVES unique content. Good write up, Gaffney.

By the way, what's up with your profile picture? Just curious why you chose that. What's so special about it that made you want to post something like that?

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When it comes to content, the most important word to take away from Gaffney's topic, in my opinion, is "unique." Gaffney used that word twice. I agree that rich, dynamic content is king, but it means nothing (okay, very little) if it's not unique. Google LOVES unique content. Good write up, Gaffney.



By the way, what's up with your profile picture? Just curious why you chose that. What's so special about it that made you want to post something like that?



I just noticed that, wow I wonder what everyone has thought What the heck?

Uuuugh it's because my photo automatically updated from facebook. Because of the new facebook layout I decided to merge my two fav things. Portal 2 and Inception.
%7Boption%7D

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I'm struggling, although in truth we are doing okay.

I'd appreciate your advice regarding this, as I believe the setup is good but I'm stuck as to how to move forward. If I focus on content, other areas are effected. I'm struggling with getting people on board who can help and I am unsure how to motivate or get people who say they to do so. If I promote the site by handing out flyers then the site doesn't get posted on (well except from me and my wife)

Personally I think getting our social streams in order and finding people to post would make a huge difference, we are getting people joining but they just read or disappear into the background.

Our other rival is extremely negative and thrive on this but I am slowly winning people over. I'm just unsure as to how I can take the next step.

Thanks for sharing Gaffney.

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Given your success with a community, and in particular, your description in this topic about how you created an environment where people can share and be social, what are your views about allowing or disallowing links that point elsewhere for similar type of communities.

Here is my dilemma:

1. do I permit people posting links to Facebook groups or Google Groups that essentially replicate or to be used instead of say the social groups we have online?

2. we have an online gallery where we try to encourage everyone to share images and videos. do I discourage or forbid the posting of links to galleries outside our community that serve the same function?

3. we may even face competing communities - do I permit these links or blacklist/edit them? Do I warn people that discussion is great but promoting competing communities is not allowed? My sense is that if I do that, people will just leave in a big harumph and never come back.

Thanks for your thoughts.

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