Ok so I’m just arsing about here, testing out the LJ cut tags. This is an e-mail I sent back to someone who spammed me with an invite to join his RPG forum.
I know you mean well, but just a gentle word from someone who works in a Marketing deptment designing websites. I don’t know where you have picked up my e-mail address from, but unless I personally gave it to you and agreed that you could use it for marketing purposes (which sending this invite to join your formum is) you are breaking the Data protection Act and spaming me. Plus it looks damn unprofessional. My gut reaction to this e-mail was a vague sense of annoyance and the rather negative response to not even look at your site.
I am involved in running RPG sites www.rhqn.com and previously www.eurolog.org (for 2 years).
If you want to increase your traffic I would suggest the following things. This is based on my experience of running www.rhqn.com (which has a very niche audience, players of the rpg HeroQuest) which has 400-700 unique vistors a month.
Join someone else’s community and become and active and useful member. Put a link back to your site in your signiture and people will check it out.
Get actual gaming content on your site. Your site says it has GM resources, I see only two forum posts. Get someone writing articles or scenarios. Put them up in as clearly formated PDFs and they will be a constant draw to your site. Alot of the smaller game companies will put permanent links up in their fan sections if you post a good scenario/article about their game on your site.
Try RPG banner host http://www.rpghost.com/exchange/ I never used this free service, but my friends over at the Tavern forum (http://tavern.zunder.org.uk/tav/index.php) did previously (when they were purely an Elric RPG site) and this generated a good number of hits. Its certainly noticeable we have fewer members joining the forum since the owner dropped out of the banner exchange
Sell your strengths. At the moment Its not clear from your site what it is. If its a prodominatly UK based forum (which is one of the things which does creep out from having a close look at the posts and peoples locations) then make that clear. If you are strongly fantasy make that clear. Please no never sell your site on the premise of “We are an online RPG resource forum looking for writers, playtesters, gamers, people with a sick and twisted sense of humour” (as you did in your unsolicited email). This automatically makes you look as you have no idea of social graces. Eurolog (www.eurolog.org) had problems when they promoted themselves with the phrase “we have a wacky sense of fun”, it lead people publically in gaming forums to doubt their ability to put on a decent convention (which they’ve done for coming upto 15 years). I’m not saying that you should present a sober image, but just avoid promoting your site in away that will allow people to attach unfavourable sterotypes to it.
You obviously care about what you are doing, which is why I’ve sent you this lengthy reply. However I won’t be posting on your site, or advertising any RPG ventures that I am involved in, on the strength of your e-mail alone for the reasons I’ve disscussed above.
However if I keep on seeing your url on sig lines on good forum posts and as links to interesting content……. 🙂