Looking for suggestion on marketing a webmaster/freelancer auction site. << url snipped >>

Thanks for the feedback.

What I'm looking for is where and how should I market this site to get more freelancers and webmasters to join and post auctions and buy and trade things as well.

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I think your url has been snipped off, you should post in proper section with your site, so that we can see it and suggest you accordingly.

To get specific reviews and feedback related to your specific site, please post in our Site-Specific Questions forum: http://www.daniweb.com/techtalkforums/forum51.html - Be sure to specify the type of review you're looking to focus on i.e. selling advertising, promotion and gaining members, site usability, navigation, etc.

However, this is as good a thread as any to discuss how to get freelancers to join a community targeting a Webmaster Marketplace where web freelancers can buy, sell, and trade. If anything, it will be able to help others in the same predicament, such as me :)

I think that the number one reason why someone would join a community like this is to get something out of it. They are freelancers to make money more than out of hobby alone. This can be both a good and a bad thing. For example, people are more apt to spend more time on hobby sites because they're interested in the subject and genuinely enjoy being there. While it's definitely possible to make your site enjoyable to spend time on, people aren't going to spend as much time there unless they see a return on investment in doing so.

No one wants to waste their typing and time by posting on a site that no one is going to see. So your goal is to not only get people to post, but to get people to CONNECT. People are going to go to your site to make contacts in the industry. What better way to start than making sure that you are their first contact? Each time a new member registers and posts, don't just welcome them to your community. But tell them that you're in the same industry as them and would be interested in a possible partnership. Start off with a link exchange directory. Perhaps swap some banner advertising.

When you're first getting started, you're going to get a few people posting, but they'll soon see that in more cases than not, no one is going to be there to take them up on their offers or to buy what they are selling. So it should be your first goal to make these people happy enough, and feel like their post was worth the time it took to make, by being the first web industry contact and potential partner that they find on the site. Just enough to make them leave with a feeling that your site was useful enough to return to.

Let's compare this to forums, for example. People don't want to waste time typing on an inactive forum when no one is going to reply to them. That's why people don't post on inactive unpopular forums. The best way to get a forum started is for the admin to reply to each and every post and answer as many questions as possible. Eventually, the few people who do come will all see that their questions were answered, and they'll return. (Even if the site does look inactive, members are selfish. They only care about whether their OWN posts were replied to, not any others. So as long as THEY were helped, they'll come back.) Eventually, enough people keep coming back that things get self sufficient and you don't have to reply as much anymore.

The same thing goes for your site, only with a twist. In a forum, posters want their questions answered and to be replied to. In your site, posters want to make business deals and meet contacts. So that is the role you're going to have to play until your site gets self sufficient.

Eventually, you'll find enough people returning, that they'll start making deals with each other, and you can back off a little bit.

So does anyone else out there have any ideas of ways to engage in business deals (even on a small scale) with all new members? Even something small like a link directory or link swap would be enough to make them feel like visiting your site was beneficial enough to their business to make it worth it. After all, the main reason they are visiting your site is to promote THEIR business. So give them what they came for! Give them various tools that will help them promote their businesses! :)

Good luck!! :)

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