I very much disagree with the spirit of the article in its current form, as typified by this early sentence: "The simple truth is that unless you promote your Wikia in some way, it will have no visitors; nor will it gain regular contributors."
While I agree that active promotion can be helpful, it's not the only way to draw visitors to your wiki. I wrote about this on Will Wikis Work?, in the section Awareness increases organically. Now that Tom's created this page and linked it to WWW?, it seems like I should move that section over here -- but I'm not sure how, because it essentially contradicts what seems like the basic point of this page. Does anyone have an idea how to resolve this, and merge the two? -- Danny (talk) 23:43, 25 July 2006 (UTC)
- Hmmmm... its tricky. Awareness does increase organically, but promotion does work as well. We could copy that section over I guess. By the way, I just found this article and the 4th article on improving your wiki, and collected them together with your article on building communities. Mostly Zen (talk) 11:17, 27 July 2006 (UTC)
- I guess what I'm saying is that people finding the wiki through a search engine isn't "random"; it may be the single most important way to attract people. My wiki started out with a core group of people from a couple of Muppet fan websites -- but after that initial group, pretty much everybody else who's come to the wiki found us through search engines.
- Thinking about attracting contributors as an organic, unpredictable process is a different way -- and, I would argue, a more powerful way -- to think about building your base of wiki contributors. For one thing, you avoid the possibility of over-promoting your wiki, and alienating potential communities by looking too much like a "salesman".
- Contributors want to join wikis that look healthy and active; they don't want to join wikis that look desperate and anemic. I would suggest that the best thing for somebody who runs a wiki is to stop wasting time trying to "promote" their wiki, and to spend that time digging in and getting to work. When your wiki is strong enough and cool enough, people will be asking to join you, rather than the other way around. -- Danny (talk) 20:26, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
- Hi Danny, thanks for the help on our main page today :)
- You are right that finding a wiki on a search engine isn't random. People search for things they are interested in, like muppets, starwars, psychology etc... the thing is though, how do they find YOUR muppets site, as opposed to other muppet related sites out there? I suspect that, because you had a core group from a couple of muppet sites already, those sites linked the new Wiki. And this would dramatically raise its google rating, making you appear really high up in any google search (and other engines too).
- You are right about not wanting to over promote yourself in the early stages though, you've got to have a health y and viable looking community before people will want to join. Getting the balance between not over promoting yourself at too early a stage, and not promoting yourself at all is tricky. If you do to little, how will anyone know you exist? You need to have links from other websites to even appear anywhere sensible in google rankings nowadays.
- You guys are No.1 for 'Muppet Wiki' (as you'd hope really!) but what about people who don't search for Wiki because they are new to the idea? I couldn't find you in the top 30 for just 'muppets', but when I looked at the other pages for 'Muppet Wiki' I found you have about 30 pages linking your site from outside.
- This is the kind of promotion I like: http://www.mindhacks.com 3rd article for July 31 2006.
- Yeah, I wouldn't expect that we would come up when you look for "Muppets" -- there's too many other sites that have been around for longer. The cool thing is that we now come up as #3 for pages like "Fozzie Bear" and "Michael K. Frith", and #8 for "Sesame Street News Flash". If people just put "muppets" into a search engine, then yeah, they're not going to get great results. But when they get more specific -- looking for a specific character, performer or sketch -- then we're going to appear in those results, because we have content that you can't find anywhere else on the web. Somebody looking for "Fozzie Bear" and finding our page, that's a meaningful click, and they're going to find what they're looking for on our site. That's the person who's likely to become a reader and a contributor.
- That's why I think the best promotion is just adding more information to your wiki and making it a better resource -- when you've got unique information, your wiki shows up for lots of interesting, content-specific searches.
Promotion within WikiaEdit
Many founders ask about it. My 2 cents is, seek your potential contributions, and notice that they are not always among the other wikia's wikis, but outside. Still, adding a section about how to promote your wiki through the central wikia or among the other wikias might be helpful. Anyone wants to try?--Rataube 17:11, 25 October 2006 (UTC)
I would like to explore promotion of the Protoscience wikicity by way of the webring system. Specifically, I would like to add the Protoscience wikicity to the Boundaries of science webring. This would require placing a small amount of code into a page at protoscience.wikicities.com. Here is the webring code:
Is this a method of wikicity promotion that can be pursued? JWSchmidt 14:24, 30 May 2005 (UTC)
- There is also an HTML4.01 version that can be used:
<!-- Begin Boundaries of Science NavBar Code --> <div id="science_nav_bar" style="border-top:#eee;border-left:#eee;border-right:#00c;border-bottom:#00c; background-color:black;color:#FFFF9C;text-align:center;font-size:1.12em;"> <p><strong style="font-family:Copperplate Gothic Light, Arial;color:#94D6E7;size:1.25em;"> Boundaries of Science </strong></p> <p style="font-weight:bold;"> [ <a href="http;//M.webring.com/go?ring=scienceb&id=47&prev" title="The previous site." style="color:white;">...</a> <a href="http;//M.webring.com/go?ring=scienceb&id=47&prev5" title="The previous group of sites in this ring." style="color:white;">Back</a> | <a href="http;//M.webring.com/wrman?ring=scienceb&addsite" title="Add your site to this Webring." style="color:white;">Join Now</a> | <a href="http;//www.webring.com/forum?forum=scienceb" title="Post your questions or share your thoughts with others on the Boundaries of Science Message Board." style="color:white;">Forum</a> | <a href="http;//M.webring.com/hub?ring=scienceb" title="Featured Sites and a complete list of all the sites in Boundaries of Science." style="color:white;">Featured Sites</a> | <a href="http;//M.webring.com/go?ring=scienceb&id=47&next5" title="The next group of sites in this ring." style="color:white;">Forward</a> <a href="http;//M.webring.com/go?ring=scienceb&id=47&next" title="The next site." style="color:white;">...</a> ] </p><a href="http;//www.itzalist.com/science.html">Science and Education Directory</a> </div>
Links on other wikisEdit
This section seems to have outdated information. The RecentChanges.info blog has not been updated since August 2006 and no-one seems to care about what is added to the WikiSpotlight page on WikiIndex. --Spankart 18:26, 13 January 2007 (UTC)
Not only the people have to be out there but also the knowledge Edit
I think that by now, there is enough experience with Wikis (Weather it is Wikipedia and its sister projects, or any of the many wikis already out there including here in wikia), to conclude that a wiki is a great tool for collecting and arranging existing knowledge, but not for aiding the creation or discovery of new knowledge.
Over the last 5 years or so, I made several attempts the harness the wiki technology for new knowledge discovery and formation of communities that will use a wiki to organize bits of information and informal know-how into solid knowledge. A priori, it seemed like this should work. i mean, the wiki with its edit and save concept looks like the perfect tool for the progressive-improvement process that is supposed to happen, but somehow it does not work. It seems that people are reluctant to contribute what they are not 100% sure about and would certainly not go out of their way and their existing knowledge sharing (or not sharing) habits to do so.
So people who would like to start a new wiki should know that it will probably only work if there is an existing community with existing knowledge about their subject matter that is just looking for a good place to publish this knowledge in the Internet. You might say that any successful wiki is just an extension of the Wikipedia to a more specific direction. --Oshani 14:09, June 9, 2010 (UTC)
- Yes i'd agree to some extent as i started the http://tractors.wikia.com to go were wikipedia policy stops people adding data. Be that it is considered non notable, or a List of common items. Some areas of wikipedia have been taken over by admins who believe they are the arbitrators of notability even if they have no detailed knowledge of a subject area, or if you cannot google it it is not important. (other section have articles of complete rubbish, but that the power of thw wiki 'system' and its downfall at times in terms of credability).
- As you say its only good if people are willing to contribute and share their knowledge freely. By collaborative working it should potentially (as wikipedia has proved) provide for a much wider knowledge base in on place than a lot of niche web sites (which date quickly and need constant input by one person to update them and require hosting so often good sites die when the host site closes or the founder of the web pages stops paying the domain name fee. Wikia (hopefully will not disappear & we have to pay no hosting fee so that attracted me to start a wide ranging 'niche' site with out too much 'admin' overhead, as i support wikipedia concept but felt constrained by some of the restrictions and attitudes of admins with bias on it). - BulldozerD11 14:39, June 9, 2010 (UTC)