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I want to advertise my community (an online community with a forum, homepage and TeamSpeak without a specification) and I don't have many members at the moment (only 10). Now, I want to make the community bigger, but I'm not sure where can I advertise it for others to find? I don't want to get banned for advertising.

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    I assume, by "advertise" you mean you are willing to pay, correct? – Andy Oct 18 '16 at 14:03
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    Somewhat related (maybe you can pick ideas from there): communitybuilding.stackexchange.com/questions/621/… – user732 Oct 18 '16 at 15:32
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    Can you edit in something about the type of users you're hoping to attract? Is your community for professionals, hobbyists in areas that already have communities or organizations, hobbyists with no clear centers of activity right now, something else? And is your community worldwide or more localized? – Monica Cellio Oct 18 '16 at 18:20
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    From what are you concerned about getting banned? – tuskiomi Oct 19 '16 at 16:51
3

In addition to buying keywords, you might consider:

  • Promoting your community via social media with posts that include a call to action, following other leaders in the community and asking them to follow you and join the community.
  • Adding high value content to your community site and soliciting/rewarding participants who do the same.
  • If it's a business community, try LinkedIn sponsored updates aimed just at those who are most likely to find value in the community. If it's more about individuals/consumers, try Twitter or FB or Insta or Pint, depending on the people you're trying to reach.
  • And if you haven't done it already, ask your community, even just the first 10, what THEY want and where they'd be likely to find and join a community like yours. Good luck!
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2

Before driving traffic (thru ads), you need to make sure that the Experience (of landing to your community) is compelling. For this, it's great practice to seed it with compelling content, and make sure your initial champions interact on such content.

Then, it's time to attract new users, by teasing them about value of content & expert that you'll provide. Interact on platforms they usually use:

  • Email (with newsletters for example),
  • Linkedin posts,
  • microblogging: Twitter, Chatter internally, etc.
  • feature at Events (best is when Community members speaker about the value they get)

These steps are part of a bigger Community Launch Strategy I authored some years ago, Mel Gibson theme (1, 2, Go)

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Encourage users of your community to invite their friends to the community.

Perhaps offer some sort of reward system, where users that invite X amount of members receive some sort of badge on their profile.

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Some hosting companies have a 'show your website' section in their forum. If you are willing to pay, try Google Adsense.

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