How to leverage social tools to support a forum

Forums and social networks are not oil and water.  They are oil and vinegar for your vinaigrette.  Shake gently together and take your marketing salad up a notch.


In fact, there are several things you can do to leverage your social networks to bring in more forum traffic:

  • Make sure you have a link to your forums in the profiles of all your social networks
  • Pull feeds into your forum home page from the social networks
  • Vibe off of the short status updates that happen in the social networks to start longer discussions in the a Tweet as a topic and then spark a bigger discussion
  • Add social login tools, so that your forum members can log in using their existing social network credentials
  • Post updates from the hot topics in the forums out to the social networks, with a link back
  • Promote special events, offers, or contests from the forums on your social networks
  • Add space in your forum registration for members to add their other social networking handles, links, etc.

How are your social networks and forums playing nicely together? Do you have any cool ideas I missed?  Do you have a good vinaigrette recipe?





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Thanks!  There might be a way to grab the RSS feed for topics that meet certain criteria...I'll have to look into that.  It wouldn't be too difficult to manually Tweet out or post teasers to hot topics though.


As far as which platform is the easiest to make social, may I humbly suggest

There are some great ideas here. I particularly like the idea of posting hot topics online. Is there any way of automating that?


Perhaps you know which blog engine is natively more social? In other words, which one requires the least amount of customization to be social? (e.g. PHPBB, VBulletin, etc.)