Participating in communities is a great way to get help, share and learn. I am a member of several communities myself and not too much of that is going on lately. I, too have been guilty of not having the proper etiquettes of participating in communities. I admit I was all too thrilled that I was going to be able to share my blog posts because some communities have forbidden the sharing of any kind of links. However, I quickly noticed that I was not the only one and that everyone in the communities were doing the same thing. I can't say that my blog posts were getting any real visit time because before I looked up it would be at the bottom before I could count to three. So, this really wasn't bringing me any real visitors or traffic. I kept doing it for a minute but after a while I called it quits. This isn't what a community is supposed to be about. I had since started my own community and I knew that I didn't want my community to be used only as a haven for links. So, if I didn't want people to just drop and leave links in my community. I knew that I had to quit doing it in other communities whether they allowed it or not.
This has become a big problem for people who have communities. I mean, there is virtually no interaction going on and when I say none, I mean NONE. I don't agree that people shouldn't be able to share links because sometimes people write blog posts that answers a question that someone has asked. Plus, you might have read a good article that everyone can benefit from. So, I wouldn't ban links all together. I know some people have and I can certainly see why they did it. For me, a community is about helping and sharing. It's virtually no point in joining a community if you can't share what you know or learn. However, I do believe everything should be done in moderation. It certainly shouldn't be used as a place for link dumping. In many cases communities have turned into freeadvertising forums. Forums where people come and advertise for free and on a daily basis. Now, they have freeadvertising communities. These are communities that are set up for you to advertise in. You know these communities because they have names like "Free Ads" or "Free to Promote". Then they go on to say that you can post your ads for free. There is a big difference between a freeadvertising community and a regular community. In a regular community participation is expected. In a freeadvertising community it is not because people only come there to post ads.
What can we do to make these communities better? I understand that everyone wants to get traffic to their websites or blogs but just dropping your links in communities is certainly not the answer. It really takes the fun out of being in a community. I have seen questions go unanswered because people are too busy posting their links. They probably didn't even see it because as I said before just in a matter of minutes because there are so many people posting their links it ends up at the bottom all too quickly. Find out what is expected of you when you join a community. Don't just do something because everyone else is doing it no matter how wrong it may be. Answer questions. If someone asks a question and you know the answer then, answer it. Share not only your blog posts but other bloggers content too. Have fun! You can also share inspirational quotes. Who doesn't need a positivity boost? A community is about sharing, learning and helping. These components make a great community.
Below is what people had to say about just posting links and no interaction in communities. If you would like to participate in the conversation please do so.
Everyone loves a great community. When done correctly it is enjoyable for everyone. You shouldn't feel discouraged if you want people to see your links. There are places that you can go to share your links and people will comment. No one is saying that you can't share your links but that is not the only thing that should be done when participating in communities. No one likes to visit communities where there is absolutely no interaction and only the posting of links. That's a fast track for a failure of a community. We don't join communities to help them fail we join so that people can have a place for support and to help them succeed.