We are launching a real estate website with some forums too. We need experts (lawyers, architects, etc.) to contribute to our forums for some first line advice. How would you attract such experts to contribute as volunteers? We do expect a lot of traffic from faithful visitors, because we will offer other services too.
We were thinking of putting up a 'Partners' page with the name and website of contributors who answer at least 50% of the questions in their domain, allowing them to attract customers for their paid advice for complex problems. Any pitfalls in this approach?
Other suggestions to attract and incentivize them?
"We do expect a lot of traffic from faithful visitors" If you can accomplish this, the experts will follow, specially if they have a chance to to do business with your high valuable visitors.
The hard part is to get visitors to the site, once you have that, I am sure the experts will come knocking on your door. I believe you have the chicken and egg problem.
Check this question for some advice on the chicken and egg problem.