3 Things You Need To Know About Free Popover Genie Special Offer

This special offer is good for a one year subscription to the Popover Genuie Starter plan.

1. What does Popover Genie do?

Clients told us they need users who visit their forum to actually sign up/register. Many users, especially those who find the forum from a Google search, will reap some advice and then disappear forever.

Popover Genie prompts users to sign up/register before they disappear which in turn allows Ninja Post clients to grow and monetize their forum communities faster.

2. How do I take advantage of this free special offer?

Start by signing up for your 15-day free trial with Ninja Post. After you begin your Ninja Post trial, the Ninja Post team will contact you to design and activate your Popover Genie popover.

3. Does Popover Genie work?

Ninja Post clients that use Popover Genie on their forum report that sign-ups/registrations increase by 30-50% after inserting their popover. Examples utilized by Bill Belew and We Get Around are shown below.

Questions? Chat with us.

Popover Genie example - We Get Around
Popover Genie example - Bill Belew
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Three Reasons To Welcome Users When They Join Your Forum Community

While it may seem obvious to some, when a user engages with you in some way—joins your email list, follows you on social media, joins your forum, etc.—it is polite and potentially lucrative to personally welcome them and thank them for following you.

For starters, this act of kindness creates a warm and fuzzy feeling and tells the person they’re “more than just a another follower”. Incidentally, this moment also represents a perfect opportunity to make a request of the user. It could be a request for feedback about a new product, a question about the biggest challenges they currently face, or the next steps the person can take to build a stronger relationship with you.

In the best case, a good welcome message provides instant value to new users when they join.

We have found this opportunity is often overlooked by forum owners. However, the Ninja Post platform is designed to help you avoid this costly mistake because we allow site owners to automatically send a Personal Message to new users when they join your forum community. By welcoming users, forum admins can accomplish three important goals:

  1. Nudge the user to proceed. For example, you can encourage the user to introduce himself or herself or to create a new thread. Many people are bashful when they join a new group and never get involved beyond lurking. A warm introductory message helps users get comfortable right away.
  2. Alert the user about special deals, new products for sale, account upgrades, etc. When a user joins your forum his or her enthusiasm is very high and he or she might not be aware of products for sale. Bring this information to their attention.
  3. Set expectations for user behavior. By explaining what is or is not tolerated, the site owner can set a constructive tone for the entire community. The user gets a direct line of communication with the site owner. This approach encourages members to work together and help one another and is designed to reduce vicious personal attacks and things of that nature.

Not everyone will take you up on your offer… but it doesn’t hurt to extend a warm welcome to new users. As long as your platform can take this action automatically on your behalf it’s a no-brainer to implement. How you take advantage of this opportunity to engage is up to you!

It's important to welcome new users when they join your forum

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Client Profile: The Matterport User Group Forum

Note: Guest blog post by Dan Smigrod. Dan is the founder of the Matterport User Group Forum which is powered by Ninja Post. Thanks, Dan!


Here’s why we created the Matterport User Group Forum and why we engaged Ninja Post to host it.

First some context. Atlanta-based We Get Around is Georgia’s first and only photography service company dedicated solely to providing Matterport three-dimensional (3D) photography services. We started a Network of 3D photographers from around the globe in September 2014 and needed a way to bring everyone together.

We launched our Ninja Post forum so that we could connect Matterport 3D content creators worldwide. As I wrote then, “Our vision is a community of Matterport users getting help and helping others with Matterport capture, creation and sharing.” Or as Ninja Post describes: “Collaboration. New friends. Inspiration.”

Now, on any given day, as many as 300+ people worldwide check-out our Forum to browse 1,500+ thread posts among 150+ topics. More than 100 Matterport Pro 3D Camera photographers from five continents have registered as members. Forum readers have collectively spent more than 1,000+ hours on the Forum, including more than 41,500+ page views and spend an average of 5:43 minutes on the site during each visit. All that in just our first six months!

Forum members often comment how helpful and quick other members are responding to questions. Plus, members have created an awesome knowledge base for those who are just thinking about buying a Matterport Pro 3D Camera to those of us who are prolific 3D content creators. For example, I posted a question about Matterport iFrame embed code for WordPress before I went to bed and the next morning there was a very detailed answer waiting for me (and subsequently many thread posts on this topic).

Starting the Forum has also helped us find other Matterport pros for our Network and helped with SEO for We Get Around. (To see for yourself, Google: Atlanta Matterport Photographer)

As you can imagine, starting a Forum just a month after the Matterport 3D Showcase solution was announced meant that it was likely that we would only have a couple of members to start. Mike coached us on suggested thread topics, initial content strategy and, enabled Matterport 3D Showcase content to be easily embedded in thread posts. Essentially, everything that would help us success in forming a robust community around the Matterport platform.

We’re thrilled with the Matterport User Group Forum powered by Ninja Post. That’s why I asked if I could share my enthusiasm for Ninja Post in this guest post.


Posted in Marketing Your Forum | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

5 Steps To Revive A Dead Forum

Some say the rise of social networks like Facebook and Twitter has led to a decline in forum use. Others say the shift to mobile has led people to abandon forums. However, many forum communities continue to thrive in the age of social media. This tells us that even if your forum is on life support, there is still hope.

What steps can you take to revive your community? In the short term, it takes a blast of adrenaline. Over the long term, it requires good old-fashioned persistence.

When relaunching a forum community after migrating to Ninja Post, we incorporate elements of Jeff Walker’s Product Launch Formula into the process to pique interest and to collect feedback from users. After the launch, we take steps to keep users engaged and attract new members. The steps break down like this:

  1. Pre-launch Announcement #1. Send announcement to all users that “something big is coming soon”. Take this opportunity to ask users to complete a short survey. The survey can be used to see what users want from their community.
  2. Pre-launch Announcement #2. Send a follow-up announcement to all users. Remind them that “something big is coming soon” and remind them to take the survey.
  3. Big announcement. Share high level survey findings with users and invite users to the new forum.
  4. Regular newsletter. Send a weekly newsletter to all members to recognize contributors and highlight popular content. This step is about training users to visit the forum regularly.
  5. Funnel users from the main site. Forums sustain themselves by adding new users to the mix. We know the best forum users come from your main site so we advise funneling them from your main site to your forum.

Following these steps will give your forum community a rosy outlook. As soon as you get a pulse back, the best long terms solution for any forum community is to post fresh content on a daily basis. This takes dedication and persistence and creativity. Although you could do all the heavy lifting yourself, we recommend engaging your most passionate and prolific users using the steps outlined above to revive a dead forum.


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Sharing Content From Your Forum On Social Media. Are Share Buttons Worth It?

Earlier this week we discussed best practices for marketing your forum on social media. Many forum owners insist on placing conspicuous “Share This!” buttons on their forums in an attempt to get users to re-post forum content to their social media accounts. We have found this practice is not very effective.

Few people share content in the first place and it attracts even fewer clickbacks. Anecdotally speaking, when it comes to forum/community content, it might take 100,000 impressions to garner just one “share”. This “share” might spawn 5-10 clickbacks.

Any traffic is good traffic but since the “Share” buttons take up valuable screen real estate in an increasingly mobile world, the additional clutter is not worthwhile. This real estate would be better used to (1) highlight forum content and/or (2) nudge users to contribute fresh content to the forum.

The beauty of this approach is that it keeps the interface simple but does not preclude a motivated user from copying the URL and posting it to their favorite social media page.

We still encourage site owners to share forum content on their social media feeds. Share early and often, as we like to say. But expecting users to take on this task is asking too much. Therefore, we don’t think “Share” buttons deserve prominent placement on your forum.

sharing forum content

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5 Methods To Market Your Forum On Social Media

Funneling traffic from your main site to your forum is probably the most efficient way to build your forum’s audience. However, it’s not the only way to attract new users. If your site has a huge following on social media, it makes sense to convert these users to forum users. This allows you to hold the conversation on your turf.

Be warned that it’s very difficult to draw users out of the “walled gardens” of social media onto your forum. But it’s worth it if you can find a couple power users. Here’s some advice for marketing your forum on social media:

  1. Make users curious. The link to your forum should arouse the reader’s curiosity. This can be achived by linking to a specific thread with a provocative title.
  2. Be funny. Who doesn’t love to be entertained? A thread featuring a series of funny photos can get readers to click through to your forum.
  3. Ask users to help one another. Asking users to help one another is a great way to inspire teamwork in your community. It also has the effect of bringing together experts and newbies.
  4. Post multiple times. It can be frustrating if your first cross post doesn’t net hundreds of new users. But don’t lose faith. It takes time to train people to use and check your forum so make marketing your forum on social media a habit. If you follow Rule #1 on this list to make users curious then you’ll probably post a different link every time so users will not be annoyed.
  5. Schedule an event. Lots of options here: conduct a Q&A with an expert, set a time for a live chat, announce plans to meet up in real life, or run a contest or giveaway. If the event is done in conjunction with a sponsor, this approach can produce a variety of benefits such as increased notoriety, more freebies for users, and it can attract more focus & energy since more stakeholders are involved.

Marketing your forum is about generating momentum. Be original, be persistent, and get people excited about your community. This is easier said that done but if these activities become habits you can convert your followers into forum users.

Posted in Marketing Your Forum | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

How The Like Button On Your Forum Sparks A Feedback Loop

For any platform with user generated content, a “Like” button generates lots of reward for little effort, which is crucial. Given the ongoing surge in mobile usage among forum communities, it’s more important than ever to give users an easy way to participate. By comparison, writing a reply requires time and patience and brain power, three commodities that are always in short supply.

For one user to acknowledge another with a single click or tap is a simple but powerful act. It’s gratifying for the “Liker” because they get to display gratitude and give their stamp of approval by attaching their name to the post. Likewise, it’s gratifying for the content creator to be recognized in such a way and it encourages him or her to return to the forum to add more content. After all, most people love to garner approval from their peers.

On the Ninja Post platform, “Liking” something starts the feedback loop in the Hooked Model because “Likes” are connected to the user’s reputation score. So when a post gets lots of “Likes”, the reputation of the person who made the post improves. This approach forces users into a symbiotic relationship where users need to be friendly and helpful toward one another to improve their reputations within the community.


The above image shows a popular post and a popover window that displays everyone who “Liked” the post.

Posted in Misc. Forum Discussion | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

The Fog Behavior Model, Forum Software, And Community Apps

One way to think about user behavior and forum communities is to apply B.J. Fogg’s Behavior Model. The Behavior Model states that Motivation, Ability, and a Trigger must converge at the same moment for a Behavior to occur.


When you have an icon for your forum on the home screen of your users’ phones, you just created a shortcut (both literally and figuratively) to achieve the user behavior you desire (e.g., repeat visits).

The icon helps solve the ‘Ability’ and ‘Trigger’ challenges. With regards to Ability, the icon is easy to click on; it does not require much skill. In so far as a Trigger, the icon acts that way every time the user looks at their phone when he or she is bored.

But what about Motivation? We think Motivation is driven by having a critical mass of users. Users are motivated by the opportunity to build friendships, share knowledge, and garner respect from other members.

We notice that large-scale, multi-topic communities such as reddit and Quora combine accessibility on both desktop and phone, a user in search of entertainment, and a large audience to impress.

We think this combination of factors is why such apps are so successful and it explains why we’re pushing to have our communities listed in the Apple and Android app stores.

Posted in Misc. Forum Discussion | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

3 Components To The “Forum Success Cycle”

We theorize three components feed on each other in a cyclical manner so that a site owner is willing to work on his or her forum community over an extended period of time:

  • User activity
  • Motivation for site owner
  • Effort by site owner

User activity motivates the site owner to put effort into his or her forum community. In turn, this generates more user activity which creates renewed motivation for the site owner which compels him or her to keep working hard. We believe this cycle is one way to describe why site owners are willing to invest so much time and energy into their forum communities. It also illustrates how the site owner feeds off the users and vice versa. Can’t have one without the other, it seems.

Forum Success Cycle

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Successful Forum Communities: Motivation And Rewards

Running an unpopular forum is like trying to crowdsource something without the crowd. There’s lots of work for little reward. With no reward, there’s no motivation. With no motivation there’s no desire to work hard. That’s why forums without a certain amount of traffic or a core group of “power users” fizzle out.

We’re not arguing that it’s “easy” to run a popular forum. It’s just that running a popular forum comes with some extra motivation:

  • It’s easier to keep going through a tough time when you know that thousands of users are counting you to deliver.
  • It’s easier to keep going when your users say or do something hilarious to brighten your day.
  • It’s easier to keep going when you know your work helps your users help each other.

Besides the extra motivation, a popular forum offers more rewards too. For starters, there are many opportunities to generate revenue. There is a halo effect that reflects well on the main site. And, as we have discussed, content generation is easier and protection against spammers improves when there are more “eyeballs” on the site.

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