Well, I see that everyone is shy, I do not understand why nobody has answered this post yet.
I will encourage you to comment on my recent experience.
As most of you should know, I’m from Argentina, and my native language is Spanish; so be patient
The “success” experience
A long time ago, I started a website about (never mind)… we will call it “A project”, and the main ratio that told me that my readers needed to express themselves was the comments that my website was receiving. A lot of comments in the entries, it was obvious that the website already had a considerable amount of followers (through email) and new readers that came through google, and they were comfortable with the treatment they received. , and the content that the website offered.
I’m not going to lie to you, a few years ago I did not know Discourse.
I have worked with vB, Ipb, phpbb, and myBB. I have gone through different roles, from user, to moderator and administrator.
In “project A”, I used myBB because I was testing the reaction of readers to how they would feel with a forum. Moving from a blog, to a forum, and being able to “debate”, in this era of social networks, I must admit that there is a lot of aversion to change.
And here is another key factor: The age of your readers.
In my community, most readers are adults, +35 years old.
They are not teenagers with the fever of social networks.
They look for information, content and share their experiences.
In August of 2015 I migrated to Discourse and everything has been gone to the moon (like bitcoin!) jajaja
The “failed” experience
However, I have other web projects that also receive a lot of visits and comments, and I decided to choose a “B project” to open a forum with Discourse for that website. If I compare both projects, the latter was a FAIL. It does not come close to a low participation rate, and more than once I have reconsidered the decision to close the forum due to a lack of “debates”.
My mistake was to analyze the website looking only at its volume of readings, and fidelity to comments, regardless of who the readers were, how old they were, what they were looking for on my website.
Obviously, project B does not have the same audience that project “A”.
Project B is more oriented to a public of “social networks”, where there are more consumers of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. And there my biggest mistake. That audience does not even know what a forum is.
I hope you enjoy my experience