FORUM Credit Union in Indiana is sponsoring the Indianapolis Colts’ ‘Fan Forum,’ linked off of a banner ad on the team’s official NFL website (left-hand column).
The forum has some impressive numbers to offer. The main forum has over 400 “threads” (basically “separate discussions”), where users have contributed their thoughts almost 10,000 times. Fans talk about the team, the playoffs, NFL draft picks and tickets.
At one point back in December 2005, the forum had 1,692 individuals online at one time, suggesting the site has tens of thousands of registered users.
In exchange for its sponsorship, the credit union gets an exclusive, omnipresent banner ad at the forum.
Bottom Line: This is great brand affinity for the credit union, with tremendous opportunities to forge deep relationships with consumers.
Also note the obvious name connection. It so obvious, it’s almost awkward saying “FORUM Fan Forum.” But it works.
Key Takeaway: Online forums are excellent tools to engage people deeper with brands and subjects they are passionate about.
Reader Beware: Forums are hard to get going. They require a specific focus with passionate, well-defined audience. They also require a tremendous amount of care and feeding.
Suggestion: If you haven’t ever tried a forum, go Google “forum” and “[insert-your-hobby-or-pastime-here].” Give it a whirl. They can be very exciting, informational and robust.