What about Targeting a Niche?
This is a much more feasible plan than a general type directory. If you do want to make a more general directory, choose your categories carefully and do a very good job rather than being open to any sort of link. And if you focus on a niche you will probably find it is much easier and faster to develop a well rounded directory. Moreover, targeting a niche can mean you can more easily market to a specific group (Also see Katamari Technique).
Niche Targeting Strategies
There are thousands if not millions of communities across the web. The first thing you want to do is choose a theme or topic matter. Let’s go through some real examples:
1. You create a directory of web hosts categorized into categories like Budget, Reseller, Cloud, VPS and Dedicated. You add some affiliate banners to your directory (no follow). You then find some places where people are talking about web hosting. There are forums like webhostingtalk.com, webhostingforum.com and many others. You regularly participate in the forums with a link in your signature. You continue adding quality resources and try to become a respected expert in the area. You are not a “freeloader” hanging out for the signature link! You are developing a great resource while helping other people.
2. You organize a site around something contentious like politics. There are so many facebook groups, blogs and even forums around the web where you can talk about politics. You can create Links of the Day. You can highlight articles that are pertinent current events. You can not only include links but create your own articles too, as well as embed videos. It will take work, but if you hang out in the same places long enough, you’ll find it pretty easy to get people interested in the resource you are building and even get them involved too. Consider allowing comments. And of course a few months from now the election season will be heating up and you will be in a great spot.
3. Or pick something even more specific like Survivalists. Some people predict an economic or government collapse, and they are stocking up on supplies, building shelters, and everything they need to get ready. Why not create a directory that covers gear, building shelters, weapons, storing food, etc. Then you’ll find once again there are forums, facebook groups and blogs where you can participate, build a reputation and get people coming to your site.
You have to pick something that will interest you too. Think about what the directory will be like in 2 years, not 2 weeks. Think about the places you will participate and how you will get more and more people who have heard of your resource. Participating regularly in a niche can go a long way. It takes time but once you have carved out your area, those who follow will have a lot of catching up to do!
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