Identifying forums where your customers hang out

If you’re looking to find out where your customers hang out online, it can be difficult, especially if your customers aren’t all into one thing. For example, I wanted to find customers who need waterjet or laser cutting.These people could be into anything: lighting, cars, bicycles, oil pipelines, etc.

One technique I use is to search for relevant terms using Boardreader. Boardreader searches hundreds (thousands?) of online forums for whatever terms you specify.

If you do a search for forum posts and then click the “Show tools…” link on the results page, you can subscribe to be e-mailed every time there is a new result. However, I have found subscribing via e-mail using BoardReader is unreliable.

The good news is that “Show tools” section you get an RSS link.  You can use your favorite RSS reader to see the latest on your topics across forums. Or, you can do like I do and use Blogtrottr to notify you via e-mail every time your keywords show up on a forum somewhere.

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