Like the messages count there?
Join date and location are unimportant, but I think post counts are the most powerful form of gamification.
When I used to use any other forum software, the main thing that got me to post was watching my little post count go up and comparing it to other people.
In the forum I run now I am getting tons of signups but people just post once or twice and then leave. The built in gamification like badges etc, no one seems to pay attention to.
Does anyone have an example script/css to make post counts work?
one can configure badges associated with read time to work as gamification for read time as that article suggests, but people also like seeing numbers go up on their posts. Also my forum uses badges already for a different purpose.
Oh yes I forgot about that interview. Anyways, there are some good suggestions in the two discourse blog posts I linked. Per
It’s prudent to temper your expectations on “if we just had this one magic feature, it’d make the community.” Here’s a good example: as an experiment on one Discourse forum, I literally gave away a physical item (via postal mail) that is valued at $40+ to new users who signed up and had promising patterns of read time, likes, and topic visits. I did this maybe 40 times in total over the last 12 months. (And that’s not all I did, I also held multiple types of forum contests with prizes too.) Some of those people never really came back or eventually stopped visiting; others did come back and became regulars. There was no real pattern to it that I could discern.
Once you reach critical mass and have a solid group of regulars who do return and participate every day, you’ll find that is what people keep visiting for. Even though I was (pretty much literally) bribing new users to stay, it didn’t seem to matter in the way that high quality organic daily content did. People need a compelling reason to return — and lots of unique, interesting conversation amongst a core of regulars is the most compelling reason of all. Getting there takes time, months if not years, and daily effort.
it will take a long time. i just thought this recent BBC doc we were in would boost the effort (and it is, on signups, but not so much active users). Perhaps not. And we do have a very active community on Facebook. Its just that Facebook technical support sucks. So we were like ok well lets have a separate site, and discourse was the most functional free, modern option.
It is worth noting that if someone does sign up, post a few times, then never come back, Discourse will still send them the weekly digest email with a selection of the most well received topics and posts for that week. If the content is interesting and relevant, they’ll click back through.
So Discourse is certainly trying to help you by getting those users back to the site, and this digest email will be sent out for 52 weeks (one year) before giving up on that user and disabling future digest emails for them.
Of course there is no statute of limitation on email reply notifications — even if you are long gone, if someone mentions your username / replies to a post of yours / quotes a post of yours from 2 years ago, you will still be notified via email that someone was attempting to have a conversation with you specifically.
As an example — have you considered any kind of contest, with relevant-to-your-community prizes, involving posting to the forum? That is one of the suggestions in the two Discourse blog posts I cited on growing your community.