How Can Black Belt Forums Be Improved?

Discussion in 'Suggestions & Feedback' started by Kevin, Jun 13, 2012.

  1. Kevin

    Kevin Admin Staff Member

    That was hilarious. I don't know how you found that guy, but I love how random it is.

    I don't know how I'm going to top that :)
    SifuPhil likes this.
  2. SifuPhil

    SifuPhil Lucky Cat Is Lucky

    Well, you gave a hint to look in the "Weird / Bizarre" section, which of course SPOKE to me ... he came up on the first page. :D

    Of course, you can have all advertising usage rights. :ROFLMAO:
    Kevin likes this.
  3. Judah

    Judah fights in tights

    So you want to scare away the few we have??
    Kevin likes this.
  4. Kevin

    Kevin Admin Staff Member

    It's a good time for me to share all the ideas I have. I initially wanted to keep these a secret incase they didn't materialise, though I think it would be good to get feedback now.

    I am hoping to put many of these into action at sometime in the future :)

    T-Shirt Store

    I'd love to start selling custom t-shirts for members. My idea is for us to brainstorm several ideas for t-shirts and then get professional designers to design them (i.e. something funny, cool, and unique to BlackBeltForums).

    I'm not looking to make money this way. I'm keen on pumping all profits back into the forum. For example, I would love to generate enough money from the site to give all long term members a t-shirt. And sales from other members could be used to give away t-shirts in competitions.

    I think this would be a great way to promote the site.

    More News Updates

    Many forums use competitions to get members. In my experience, whilst they can bring in some new members, they don't always bring in good members. They tend to attract people who are only there for the competition. With any competition, the hope is that some stick around after the competition.

    So competitions are not always a great long term strategy (they are ok every now and then). A better solution is to drive new members is by increasing the content on the forum. Content drives new people to join in, and encourages existing members to participate.

    In the future, I am planning on setting aside a few hundred dollars a month from my other projects, to hire quality writers (such as SifuPhil) to write news and featured articles on a regular basis.

    YouTube Channel

    YouTube is a good way to attract new members. We could upload top ten lists, clips from movies, demos, and other fun stuff.

    Black Belt Forums Podcast

    I'd love to do a martial arts and/or MMA podcast. I think it would be fun. We could have different members on every week to discuss different topics. Google Hangout is great for this.

    This is something I won't be able to do whilst I'm in South America, as I don't have a connection good enough for streaming. When I'm back in the UK I'd love to try this out.

    Sponsor Fighters

    You all know I'm a huge MMA fan. I would love for the site to sponsor some up and coming fighters. Conor McGregor, one of the rising stars of MMA, made his debut last week for the UFC in Sweden. He mentioned that he was struggling to make ends meet. Wouldn't it be great if we could sponsor up and coming fighters and support them on their way up?

    Future of Black Belt Forums

    I still have big plans for Black Belt Forums. Things haven't went as quickly as I would have liked because I have been travelling so much over the last year, but I really do think Black Belt Forums could be massive. I see no reason why it cannot get as popular as Sherdog Forums etc....or even bigger.
    SifuPhil likes this.
  5. SifuPhil

    SifuPhil Lucky Cat Is Lucky

    Excellent ideas, all of them.

    Occasionally in my field-trips into the darker areas of the Net I come across some, er, "liberated" books, software, scripts, etc. that pertain to forum-building and promoting. Up until now I haven't paid them much heed, but I'll start collecting them on the off-chance that some random experienced forum admin might be interested in seeing what the latest schem methodologies are. [​IMG]
    Kevin likes this.
  6. Kevin

    Kevin Admin Staff Member

    Cool. There are certain promotional techniques that only work well once a forum reaches a certain level (e.g. a store). The podcast and YouTube ideas are good as it could promote the forum to a whole new audience. And that's what it's all about - getting more bums on seats, more people here to share their views and ideas :)
    SifuPhil likes this.
  7. SifuPhil

    SifuPhil Lucky Cat Is Lucky

    Oh, please don't mention stores - I'm getting a headache trying to incorporate a WooCommerce store into a Genesis child theme on WordPress with PayPal checkout. :banghead:
  8. Kevin

    Kevin Admin Staff Member

    Feel free me to message me. I've tested WooCommerce, but never used it on an active website. I know WooCommerce works great off the bat with WooThemes designs, though for other designs, you may need to start doing a lot of template editing.
    SifuPhil likes this.
  9. SifuPhil

    SifuPhil Lucky Cat Is Lucky

    It sure works a HECK of a lot better than WP eCommerce, which locks up and crashes right out of the gate. It also has some funky way of writing to the database, where if you change one parameter on your items you basically wipe out the DB. :cautious:

    I think the functionality is going to be fine with this set-up - it's just the esthetics that will be a chore, but then I'm a fussy old lady when it comes to stuff like that.

    Thanks for the offer - don't be surprised if I tearfully IM you one of these days ... :cry:
    Kevin likes this.

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