Guys, I found this on another site. Might be helpful !
Just some tips on promoting a forum. It's aimed more at people who have forums by free forum providers, and covers a few beginners mistakes.
2) Pick a unique name for your board, and try to brand it. Don't just call it your message board or, even worse, your bulletin board. If you don't want to buy another domain name, I also have a forwarding address for The Punters Lounge ( punterslounge.cjb.net/ ) which is a lot easier to remember and type.
3) Don't make do with your board's defaults OR their themes. Both boring.
4) Don't be rude to other people. Invite them to the board, and when they come, welcome them.
5) Don't tolerate spamming - a lot of people don't mind it because it is, in their view, posts, but they aren't really posts.
6) Don't tolerate flaming either - a disagreement is fine, but any more just puts other people off joining in for fear of being slated. It also sets a precedent - people may want to join the board just to slate.
7) Don't have "Mod / Admin" boards only. It just makes the others feel left out. You can communicate with your mods and admins via e-mail.
8) Don't demand registration first, until you have a good base of registered members (at least 100).
9) Make use of each board's features e.g. EZBoard's opportunity to give titles to people depending on their number of posts, and make them innovative. For example, if you run a martial arts board, you could make them a white belt for the first 50 posts, give them a yellow belt for 50-100 and so on.
10) Don't have a hundred forums. Start with one or two and expand as your members demand.
11) Here's something that you should definitely do. Recently I've started a program where sites in the same vein as mine that have no board or a crap board can adopt mine as theirs, in return for a link at the bottom, which will, of course, be seen on every page. That then encourages that webmaster and his "fans" to post, which encourages others to post etc. Have a link on your board explaining it and giving them images etc. This really is a good idea, IMHO. The bigger sites you can give a top-of-the-board link and make the webmasters moderators.
12) Run comps etc. - if you have sponsors, perhaps they can be persuaded to provide a prize?
13) Mention your board in every correspondance, put it in your signature.
14) Don't have huge pics at the top that take forever to download - they also mean that people have to scroll down to get to the forum!
That's all I have off the top of my head. Anyone got any more?