If you offer IT services, especially web development, SEO, graphic design, dVintage prom dresses atabase management, eCommerce, etc. you need to run your own forum. Why? Very simple: because the web and the Internet all are about sharing information and what better medium can there be than a forum? Many web development companies use their own sites for self-promotion so they write things like “We are the best web development company” or “Red cocktail dresses We offer great IT solutions” or “We have proudly served clients from all around the world since 2002″. Who cares about what you have been doing and how great you are? Your customers will always be primarily interested in how they can solve their own problems. They don’t google phrases like ‘the best IT company in the world’ or ‘IT outsourcing’. What their employees google daily are very specific questions such as ‘how to re-size the WP window’ or ‘what are the advantages of Google App Engine’ or ‘how to monetize an app?’.
As a matter of fact, these examples are still rather general requests but I think you get the drift: people are rarely interested in reading about another company’s successes. In most cases people are looking for a solution to their own problems. That’s why as an IT company you simply can’t afford not to have your own forum where your developers, programmers and project managers discuss problems, share ideas, ask and answer questions and simply provide information and support. There should be different sections in your forum: one for programmers and IT specialists, one for existing clients, one for prospective clients, etc. For example, if a potential client wants to know what existing clients think about your services, they should find the answers on your forum.
Most Ukrainian IT companies are afraid of sharing information. The reason for this is because, especially in Ukraine, you simply don’t talk much about your success as a company because this attracts racketeers who force you to pay as much ‘protection money’ as they can possible squeeze out of you. That’s why on Ukrainian IT companies’ websites you usually don’t find any information as to who owns the company, even if the site is in English and caters to American and British clients. However, a few Ukrainian companies have started to give their clients more information about how they work and learn, which is a vital step towards growth. If you are in the web development industry your level of success largely depends on how effectively you manage and share information.