Seeking Forum Creator Assistance / Advice

Discussion in 'Management' started by KhFanWriter9, Jun 13, 2019.

  1. KhFanWriter9
    No Mood

    KhFanWriter9 Resident Game Owner

    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
  2. Yona Carlin

    Yona Carlin Newcomer Game Owner

    On first glance, and I'm definitely not intending to offend at all. This is just my personal opinion, but some of these things definitely stick out to me:
    • The advertisement itself is poorly formatted, with inconsistent grammar. (Generally use capitals only at the beginning of sentences, acronyms like MxM, OC and RP should be uppercase, use the full word and, etc. Try running your text through Grammarly or getting someone to proofread it.)
    • There is no definitive plot, story or guidelines to reference; your advertisement essentially reads like, "Hey, everybody, just do whatever you want, whatever." (You also use the word whatever, literally, which isn't particularly encouraging.) A lot of people will skip right over this because there's no direction. There are a lot of panfandom RPs around, try setting up a specific situation such as a city where characters from different fandoms appear due to some mystical interference, or something.
    • This is more a personal preference than anything, but I immediately balked at the phrasing of "Yaoi/Yuri/Straight," because that terminology speaks to a much younger audience. Instead of devoting several points to the types of specific sexual orientations your RP allows, simply state, "we are LGBT+ friendly," or, "we welcome diversity in all character pairings."
    • You absolutely need to set up a smaller URL for your board. You've got a random string of numbers and letters in there that no one should be expected to memorize. Go very basic, like, "venture.nabble.com."
    • The forum software that you're using is very unappealing. I recommend a total overhaul here. Try picking up an install of phpBB or myBB and using one of the premade skins from their directories, or hire out the service for someone to design you a custom skin. I'm a big advocate for simplicity, but your forum looks like an AOL group from 1991.

    • I'm honestly uncertain how you're expected to RP here. Do you have character accounts, or does everybody RP from their username alone? (The latter, for most RPers, is not that appealing.) You also lack anywhere to add character profiles, and there's no instructions for how to register or submit an application.
    • Get rid of categories like, "Sexual RP Area." If your RP is 18+, and especially as an adult RP site, I'm assuming people are free to write sexual content wherever they want. Instead establish basic settings like Residential, Post Office, Movie Theater, Beach, Hospital, etc.
    Hopefully this helps!
     
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  3. KhFanWriter9
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    KhFanWriter9 Resident Game Owner

    I didn't pick the software the host picked it, and to be honest it's better then my BB, and phb put together.
    I get what you're saying for the forum's arrangement, but it's not those kind of forums on fanfiction.net, and fictionpress.
    If what you're saying from how old things look then you might as well say that for every rp forum there is today 'cause that's how they all look like. I've been on plenty of other people's forum sites before creating my own.
    Other people like having a section for clean content on the same forum the sex stuff is on since not everyone likes doing smut roleplays.

    I had picked the wrong thing for the ad. The thing was switched from panfandom to original.
    I have edited the summery / description of the forum.

    I'm still looking for advice, tips, or suggestions on how to make the forum better.
     
  4. Nevermind
    Spaced

    Nevermind Resident Game Owner

    Hi KhFanWriter, I'd like to offer you some opinions of my own as I also run an RP forum and may have some insight you could find helpful. Same as Yona, this is purely my personal opinion and you're welcome to disregard it if you choose.

    1. I have to agree with Yona and disagree with you on the point that your site looks old. I run a multi-genre forum RP site and my site looks incredibly different from yours. Whatever software your host is using, I would recommend doing a search for themes you could possibly install/implement that would improve the aesthetic appeal of your site. Right now, your forum looks like it was created in 1997, not 2019. If your host does not offer themes, think about potentially migrating your site to a place like jcink. As of now, it looks like you don't care about your site because you haven't put any work into how it looks, and that's going to turn a lot of potential new members off. Clearly you do care very much about your site and that should be evident the moment people take a look at it.

    2. You may want to consider revamping the forum structure and popping in a bit more creativity into the names. "Clean RP Room" and "Sexual RP Room" are rather on the basic side. While I do agree that some people wish to separate their RPs and not everyone enjoys engaging in smut, but a little more effort in naming the forums will be pleasing to many writers.

    3. There is very little on the index page of your site describing what your site is actually for, and the name of your site is neither simple nor explanatory. It is long, difficult to remember, and the URL is nigh impossible for anyone to remember off the top of their head, making it tough to share with others. For example, the name of my site is Umbra Roleplaying and the url is umbraroleplaying.com. It clearly states what the site is for in the title, and is easy for users to remember in case they want to invite their friends. When discussing the site, people can just say "Umbra." It's quick and to the point. Your site title doesn't have the same brevity, which makes it less appealing.

    4. Although you don't need for your site to have an overreaching plot (my site doesn't), you should have some sort of guide for what people are expected to do. I have Rules, Announcements, Member Resources, Affiliations, General Info, Questions and Suggestions, all places where users can interact with staff and find out what the whole point of Umbra is. You have a few of those in your "Front Hall," but how is anyone supposed to know that when "Front Hall" doesn't really mean anything? People have to dig through your forums to find useful information about the site when they should be front and center.
    Those are the most basic things that immediately stick out to me. I genuinely believe working on some of those would help draw more members to your community. I wish you all the best in your endeavors!
     
  5. KhFanWriter9
    No Mood

    KhFanWriter9 Resident Game Owner

    I had changed the title, and description.

    On here I'm still waiting for the title to be changed on my site's ad.

    On the forum itself I just finished the makeover.
    I just can't change the software.
     
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