Why should you run a contest on your forum?

So I’ve been kicking around the idea of running another forum contest, I ran several with the site I sold in 2009 and two posting contest on my General Forums site but this would be my first contest on Admin Talk, my new webmaster forum.

The best things about forum contest that I’ve found are; 1 getting your member excited about posting and 2 contacting your sponsors and helping them out in exchange for free products.

I’m getting ready to run a 3 month forum contest on Admin Talk, I’ll be posting the contest thread on the 16th of July. I choose the middle of the month because we weren’t ready on the 1st, and I’d rather run the contest at the first of the month or halfway through. I’ve found that I’ll get better results verses trying to run the contest during other parts of the month.

A few tips on running a successful forum contest are…

  • Make sure you have an active group of members to help along the way. You can get all the new users you want but if you don’t have a core group of contributors that will reply and continue posting, the contest could fail.
  • Offer great prizes; make them WANT to post on your forum. I try to offer niche specific prizes if possible. This will help your forums and help your sponsors.
  • Have a plan in place; know how your contest is going to run, how you’ll pick your winners and make that clear to your members.
  • Quality post; this goes along with the last tip but the goal of the admin is to fill their forum with quality post. Add incentives for those wanting to post articles or other ways to get long quality post that will encourage discussion.
  • Let your contest be known! Once you’ve posted the rules for your forum contest, spread that news like wildfire. Make a press release, post your contest on other forums and blogs. This is a great for link bait; you’ll get quality links and traffic from those sites.
  • Happy post. The most important thing is to have fun with your contest; the more fun you can have the better the contest will be.

The last thing I can say is PROMOTE PROMOTE PROMMOTE. This is key, promote your contest once you have it posted. You want as many users trying to win as possible. This is ultimately a way to gain content and traffic to your website, don’t go through all this work then don’t tell the world about it.

I’ll add a link to our Admin Talk forum once it’s published, I hope these tips have helped your forum contest and I’d love to hear what you’ve done to make your contest stand out from the crowd.

Originally posted 2012-07-03 15:04:36.