Data Mining… Gimme some!

This post is going to be a little out of the ordinary and I’m going to be asking for feedback, I don’t think my readership is all that large but I’ll be mentioning it in my notecards to the update list etc…

I have a sincere question about in world groups…. Group slots have generally always been an issue in SL.  When they raised the limit of groups from 15 to 25 (yes, omg can you believe it when I joined it was only 15 I think) people thought their problems were over.  They have yet again raised the limit to 42 with the caveat that they may reduce that count IF lag and/or other issues becomes too much of a problem with people having that many groups.  With the problems of keeping groups between rentals, vip groups, friends, family, land… you get the idea, the update subscribe list became mine and most merchants friend.

With the limit raised I have been considering giving the in world group a few more benefits assuming that folks may be more willing to keep a store in a slot.

Fast forward to now… you have a choice, what kind of group do you think is most appealing?

Option 1: The group is open enrollment, kept that way in general.  Group discounts may be applied, the odd freebie every once in awhile or perhaps group only type announcement or benefit is thrown out there… if a special group only event occurs it may be closed during to make it more ‘special’.

Option 2: The group has a nominal fee to join, say… 200-500L but you are guaranteed some special compensation for paying into the group.  Special freebies available only to groupies, sales, and other things on a rather regular basis… this group could also on occasion be closed during more special offer event type deals if they occur.

Option 3: Closed group by invitation only.  Can only join if given an invitation, also has guaranteed specials, sales, and events announced available only to them.

I have seen all three options used… because I know group space is generally dear and hard to come by along with the fact most people really –don’t- need extra spam I am wanting to ask you folks what do you think works best or would draw your attention from a consumers point of view and give you the most benefit.

Now with all that said… I GREATLY appreciate feedback on all levels, good… bad… or indifferent, so to prove that I’m willing to send a gift to everyone who responds either in world on a notecard to me, Searlait Nitschke, (please title it something like… “Data Mining for Roawenwood [date here]” or commenting here on the blog.  Please let me know your SL name if you comment here and it is not the same as in world.  Thanks very much, till next time!


5 comments on “Data Mining… Gimme some!

  1. Sexxxy Viper

    Hi Sear, i’m glad for this post, if only to remind me to join the group again! i get your updates via the other group but now that i have group space, i’m joining your in-world group. It’s my preferred method of staying updated from my favourite stores, as i often cap and it’s really easy to go back into past notices to get what i missed. my vote is for option one or three, there was a day when 500L was nothing to pay, but now with a store of my own, i have to pinch my Ls a lot more!

  2. Rylan Oldrich

    Number 2 seem the best option overall. I would limit group chat so it does not become a source of spam and annoyance but it depends on the kind of group YOU want as some more social groups use chat as a marketing “tool”. Would suggest a Subscribe o Matic or Hippo group as well for those who cannot afford it or who only wish to keep up with news. More groups makes joining easier but there will still be some without adequate group space.

  3. Kayla Bombastic

    Hi Searlait,
    I don’t really think the invite only groups work that well. I mean, what would your criteria be for inviting people? Do they just have to ask? Or do you expect them to spend so much linden in your store? I’ve never asked to join an invite only group. To me that implies they want something special from you.

    Groups with fees can work well for some, not so well for others. I think if it has a fee of 250$L or more, then you should promise a gift every month or two. Your creations are great, and this could be the way to go for you.

    Open groups work the best for most people. Your membership may fluctuate with people joining then leaving to join another group for a bit. But if you offer good sales only to them, then you will keep them coming back, or even staying in it. Though free stuff is usually the way to keep people.

    I know people say they hate spam, but I also know that if a group hardly ever sends notices, that makes people leave also. You need to keep yourself in their minds. I left one group that I paid to join because they never sent out notices. If you don’t inform me when you have new stuff or sales, then I don’t know. I’m pretty busy and don’t have time to run to a store just to see if maybe they have something new.

    Well, hope my two cents has helped.

  4. Searlait Nitschke

    Hi! thanks for the responses.

    I was figuring in the case of the invite only a person would just ask or have a request. I don’t have special criteria for my groupies.. I had the idea floating around that IF I used that option then I’d have some kind of… thing… at the landing where you could be put on a list and I’d add you so a person wouldn’t have to outright contact me if they felt uncomfortable too. That is IF I used that one. That one is my least favorite of the options anyhow. It is more work for me in the long run, and like you said smacks of snobbishness in some ways.

    Now closing a group during special group events or sales so that only those who are in it, that I could see doing on occasion… which is one reason why I mentioned it a few times.

    I’d definitely be keeping the subscriber list, the group for inworld stuff would be different, get same updates but I’ve been thinking of some extras too. I think that’s one thing I worry about too. Say a person is on the subscribo list, and the world one… that’s two notices at a time *laughs*

    So far chat hasn’t been an issue in my in world group I don’t think, it’s usually very quiet. Once in awhile get the request for a landmark or something but that’s rare. I wasn’t really going to promote talking, if people did… that’s cool but I’d want them to be pretty decent to each other. Groups can get chatty, and that can really annoy people… but some love it. Like a family.

    Past notices are a good feature. I have my subscriber list set up so you can get past things but you have to physically come to the store to retrieve them. I think most people don’t really feel like making a special trip for a notecard. *laughs*

    Thanks again for the responses! Will be around more tomorrow.

  5. Lyric

    I keep Chain and Vine free to join, while still giving great benefits to the members. The way I see it, it is a win-win situation to have a group (or “network of interested consumers”) and to keep them rewarded with small and frequent thank-yous. The small and frequent thank-yous can be in the shape of group-only full-priced purchases, or group-only reduced-price purchases, or before-anybody-else purchases, etc… so there are benefits to being in a group. Keeping it “free to join” is an attractive and more-and-more seldom-used trick to gain that network of loyalty. I love it when I see it, personally, and so I offer it. I think Roawenwood is top-notch, and however you handle the group thing will be the right right way for your store (i.e. there is no right answer, clearly, there is only your favorite way of doing things). My opinion is “keep it free to join, keep the thank-yous small but significant and frequent”. Sometimes the small gesture is exactly what someone was looking for… and it’s the big gestures that you’re in business for : )

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