I had to go through that dilemma quite a few times in the past, as a community admin. I’m going to share with you what kind of pros I came up with on the way. Here are some of the best reasons why your forum message board should have a blog section.
A Hassle-Free Blog for Your MembersSome of your members already have a personal blog. Some will feel the need to have one at some point. If your members have the chance to have their personal blog on your site – their favorite site, obviously– they won’t go through the trouble of building and supporting their own on Blogger, Tumblr, or WordPress for instance. You give them the opportunity to have their own personal space, without having anything special to do at all! It’s hassle-free and people like that. It’ll one more reason for new members to register.
Good Visibility and ReachStarting a blog is easy, making it visible and getting regular visitors is a whole other thing. The members who start their blog within your forum will enjoy the traffic and visibility your forum already has, providing them instantly with a reliable audience made of anonymous visitors, but more importantly, of fellow members! They’ll reach their audience right away!
It Increases Member EngagementBlog entries are different from forum threads. With a blog section, you’ll be able to offer your members a new media to share their thoughts and expose their personal interests. It’ll be one more way to interact and create dynamics inside your community, making your website more than just a forum. Members will have a new way to engage and interact with one another and they’ll love it, bringing the community closer together in the process. Getting to know better other members on a personal level helps create a good community atmosphere.
Content, More Content!Providing your members with a personal blogging space within your community will give them a place to share about more than just the subjects covered by your forum. Blogs being more personal in a sense, than forum discussions, you’ll find that some of your members are sharing some things they wouldn’t usually share in a forum discussion. That means more content you wouldn’t be getting otherwise.
ConclusionBlogs can allow you and your members to generate content they otherwise wouldn’t generate within the usual boundaries of your forum community. It also makes your forum, more than just a forum, while allowing your members to engage and interact in a new way.
Obviously, it can be a great addition if you want to bring your thriving community to a whole new level.
Now, should your forum become more than just a forum?