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Checklist for Starting an Online Community

I have gotten feedback over the years that some of you really want to take new steps in Internet marketing (“I swear I do, really”), but don’t know how to get started. To help, I’ve created a series of checklists for common activities to not only help get you off the dime, but also give you the confidence that you aren’t missing any major steps in the process. Today, I am surfacing a new checklist that helps you take a step into social media by starting an online community. If that’s something that’s been on your to-do list, then take a look at my latest, a checklist for “Starting an Online Community.”

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Mike Moran

Mike Moran is an expert in digital marketing, search technology, social media, text analytics, web personalization, and web metrics, who, as a Certified Speaking Professional, regularly makes speaking appearances. Mike’s previous appearances include keynote speaking appearances worldwide. Mike serves as a senior strategist for Converseon, an AI powered consumer intelligence technology and consulting firm. He is also a senior strategist for SoloSegment, a marketing automation software solutions and services firm. Mike also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of SEMPO. Mike spent 30 years at IBM, rising to Distinguished Engineer, an executive-level technical position. Mike held various roles in his IBM career, including eight years at IBM’s customer-facing website,, most recently as the Manager of Web Experience, where he led 65 information architects, web designers, webmasters, programmers, and technical architects around the world. Mike's newest book is Outside-In Marketing with world-renowned author James Mathewson. He is co-author of the best-selling Search Engine Marketing, Inc. (with fellow search marketing expert Bill Hunt), now in its Third Edition. Mike is also the author of the acclaimed internet marketing book, Do It Wrong Quickly: How the Web Changes the Old Marketing Rules, named one of best business books of 2007 by the Miami Herald. Mike founded and writes for Biznology® and writes regularly for other blogs. In addition to Mike’s broad technical background, he holds an Advanced Certificate in Market Management Practice from the Royal UK Charter Institute of Marketing and is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. He also teaches at Rutgers Business School. He is a Senior Fellow at the Society for New Communications Research. Mike worked at from 1998 through 2006, pioneering IBM’s successful search marketing program. IBM’s website of over two million pages was a classic “big company” website that has traditionally been difficult to optimize for search marketing. Mike, working with Bill Hunt, developed a strategy for search engine marketing that works for any business, large or small. Moran and Hunt spearheaded IBM’s content improvement that has resulted in dramatic gains in traffic from Google and other internet portals.

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  1. Avatar Martha Jones

    Thanks. Appreciate the detailed checklist. Just one question (as I could not find an answer to his in your article): which is the best software to start a community? I mean, currently I have to choose between phpbb and vbulletin. Which one of the two softwares do you recommend? Thanks.

  2. Avatar Mike Moran

    Thanks for the kind words, Martha. It’s hard to recommend any software as a one-size-fits-all solution, but there are many choices out there besides bulletin board software. If you are looking for something fancy that I have heard good things about, check out Communispace.

  3. Avatar Nicole Sparks

    Communispace,really? ok i will check it out.thanks

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