Forum members: what advertising would you like to see on TWF?

JeevesBond's picture

He has: 3,955 posts

Joined: Jun 2002

Background Story

The economic crisis has meant we're getting no new advertisers. Traditionally Christmas was a busy time, we would fill up on advertising, but this year we have nothing new and existing campaigns will end by April.

Going Forward

The ads on TWF never earnt us much, we were lucky if they paid our expenses. Also, many ads were ugly, and ad blockers are on the rise. We (Megan and I) are sure that we'd like to dump the ads, and just ask for donations to help keep the site running (we won't get as much money, but that's another discussion).

Alternatively, we could keep ads going and offer them as a reward for our members. Basically, members would accrue 'member points' for posting, inviting others to join the forums, being helpful, etc. which could then be 'spent' on advertising.

This is the choice for all you forum members: 1) no ads at all, or; 2) member ads; which do you prefer, and why?

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teammatt3's picture

He has: 2,102 posts

Joined: Sep 2003

Well of course I'm going to choose member ads. I'd rather see my butt ugly site being advertised than some get rich quick scheme. But why just those two choices? Can't you get a little more creative with advertising?

Start Selling forum stickies in the marketplace, or do an in depth review of someone's new application, for a fee. Let members bypass the required reviews in the website critique area, for a fee. Create a list of known "quality" web hosts, and charge a fee to be on that list (after a review of the company).

decibel.places's picture

He has: 1,494 posts

Joined: Jun 2008

teammatt3 wrote:
But why just those two choices? Can't you get a little more creative with advertising?

JeevesBond wrote:
We (Megan and I) are sure that we'd like to dump the ads, and just ask for donations to help keep the site running (we won't get as much money, but that's another discussion).

Great, put up a donate button... I got $5 donated towards the $200+ I've spent promoting a YouTube video...

What about AdSense or similar programs? (watch-em pennies pile up!)

Are there any syndication possibilities?

pr0gr4mm3r's picture

He has: 1,502 posts

Joined: Sep 2006

Let members bypass the required reviews in the website critique area, for a fee.

That is included in the ad campaign perks currently. I'm not sure if it stated that in the advertising page, but it says that on my account when I visit the critique section because I have that "Sponsor" tag.

The economic crisis has meant we're getting no new advertisers.

I never received an end-of-campaign email like I have in the past. I just noticed that my ad stopped appearing one day. In fact, now that I think of it, I don't receive PM notifications in my inbox anymore even though my account is configured to send them out. Is the mail system on TWF's new hosting server working correctly? Many sponsors don't visit this site regularly, and if no notifications were sent out, nobody will know to renew.

I would go for option 2, but how would that fund the site?

Megan's picture

She has: 11,421 posts

Joined: Jun 1999

pr0gr4mm3r wrote:
I would go for option 2, but how would that fund the site?

It wouldn't, basically. We're not necessarily looking at replacing them with an alternate revenue source. For right now, it's a decision as to whether to keep them, ditch them, or do member ads instead.

We would prefer not to put in a lot of small, low revenue things like paid market place posting and things like that. Then it gets to be little bits of advertising all over the place which we don't want. We want this place to be as ad-free as possible.

JeevesBond's picture

He has: 3,955 posts

Joined: Jun 2002

I never received an end-of-campaign email like I have in the past. I just noticed that my ad stopped appearing one day.

Nice catch. I've been receiving notifications whenever someone's campaign ends, so assumed the campaign owners would too. Looking into it, seems that an upgrade of the Ad software introduced some fields to fill-out, otherwise it won't send e-mails to campaign owners.

In fact, now that I think of it, I don't receive PM notifications in my inbox anymore

Another good catch, thanks. Smiling

Seems there was a problem with the Cron job, I've fixed it. Smiling

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Michael James Swan's picture

He has: 400 posts

Joined: May 2008

I like the member ads idea.

When i get some money and finances back on track i shall donate. Just place a donate button somewhere.

We love the site and all is good.

~ Mike

decibel.places's picture

He has: 1,494 posts

Joined: Jun 2008

An idea ...

display "sponsor" ads in interstitial pages which would be eliminated for authenticated members...

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