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Outpost 10F Forums / OTF v3 Ideas / Marketing
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darth_balco
Member
# Posted: 4 Jan 2009 22:24 · Edited by: darth_balco
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Quoting: majin_fett
I think people forget about the new Lord of the Rings movies that are coming out.


Quoting: david1
*ahem* new star trek film comming out soon ....

... big chance to market this site as 'THE' place to go for info and such about it



That doesn't mean squat. Just like with the new Star Trek movie coming out and Star Trek Online. Seriously, take a look when Revenge of the Sith came out, how many of those members that we got because of that are still around?

We'll get a rush of members, and then we'll be right back to where we are. We can't depend on all those stuff coming out to give OTF the fresh breath of air it absolutely needs. Because most of the time, those people that come in, are just there to talk about whatever movie that has heat and is doing moderately well and once they lose interest in talking about the movie, they'll move on to something else.

Our problem is not finding more members, it's trying to keep members. What's the point of putting all hope of OTF's revival on a few movies coming out if none of the rush of new members stick around?

majin_fett
Member
# Posted: 4 Jan 2009 22:48
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Obviously it means something. Just not "squat". We have the catalyst. Now we need to figure out the other ingredient.

darth_balco
Member
# Posted: 4 Jan 2009 22:55
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The other ingredient is there. It's called keeping them here. We need to show them that is more than just a place to talk about the movie coming out. If we market ourselves like that, then it will mean squat. It was a successful catalyst in the past because people came here for the movies or whatever, then saw that OTF is much more than just a place to talk about a movie.

I'll say it again, we need to market ourselves as a chatroom where you can meet cool people, have a good time, and can be a pleasant break from reality.

Putting stock in making ourselves as THE place to talk about a movie doesn't work. We won't be able to keep members that way because they'll just stick around until they get bored talking about the movie and go somewhere else. We have to show them that we're more than that.

majin_fett
Member
# Posted: 4 Jan 2009 23:03
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Yes, Pat. I know it's called "keeping them here". I now deem you "Captain Obvious".

darth_balco
Member
# Posted: 4 Jan 2009 23:07
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Really? Must not be that obvious because I'm only one that keeps saying that. I just remember what kept me here was because the people I met and how much fun I had, not because it was a place to talk about a movie. It's the people that keep people here, not a movie. This place used to fun, but it's not. It's dead and the fun and the love is all gone. We need to bring that back.

majin_fett
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 00:03
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Actually, what's obvious is that we need to keep people. A lot of us really do know this. You aren't the only one who has had this epiphany. If you go back and look at what I wrote, I actually never said the second ingredient we need is "keeping them here". That's the result.

"Getting new people" + x = "keeping them here"

We need to find x.

majin_fett
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 00:09
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Also, what I mean to say is that, yes, we need to find out a good way to keep people, but we should not stop promoting the new movies/tv shows. I mean, you have to admit that some people who came because of the new SW movies actually stayed. Like me. I came when Episode I came out, looking for a place to talk about the movie. 9-10 years later, I'm still here.

So, it's not a bad thing to market ourselves as the place to talk about these new movies. It just shouldn't be the only thing we use to market ourselves.

Is that clearer? Because I'll admit that my statements before weren't the clearest.

babel
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 00:29
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What's wrong with increasing the news facilities? Nothing. It's an obvious step. In my earlier post I wasn't saying let's downgrade the chat in favour of that, I was saying I didn't know where it could lead. But there is no harm in us trying.


In any case, is this issue not a bit of a red herring? ie how do we increase visitor numbers - and as you say, keep them?

darth_balco
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 01:00
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Simple, by just chatting. That's all we gotta do. I remember people could spend a good amount of hours just chatting with someone, having a good time. There's not too much of that these days.

If they come in here and see lively conversation, people having a good time, they would be more enticed to stay.

majin_fett
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 01:02
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Right.

But that doesn't mean we should ignore talking about/announcing news of the new movies/TV shows/books/whatever else.

Seriously, I feel like we could argue what's more important to comics, art or writing, when both need to work hand-in-hand.

soka
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 01:53 · Edited by: soka
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I don't agree with scrapping everything but the chat - we'd be a fossil to be honest.

But one thing ... even though I know there will be opponents -
I think we should get rid of the ranks. This was planned about a year ago if I am informed correct .
When a new person comes in and sees a lot of high-ranking guys in they get intimidated ... I know I was intimidated by Hobbie because he just had been promoted to CL5 back then

The point is, the average CL has increased a lot in the 5 years I'm here.
Back in 2004 the majority was 3, 4, 5 ... now - Paige phrased it best yesterday: I'm bottom of the list. Again. - majority is 5, 6, 7.

aeon
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 02:00
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The problem OTF is facing is that chat rooms are just not popular anymore. The reason why OTF still exists is because of all these members who are around for ten years. There's hardly anyone new here, and if new people come here, they either don't get noticed or purposely ignored. And then we have the issues of even snubbing old people so that they stay away from the chat.

What people want these days are things like social networks on Facebook. And they want everything that is speedy, which is why text messages or comment boxes are so popular. You don't have to spend hours doing one thing alone, you just type in your message, and then go off to do other things that are more important to you.

Chat rooms are old-fashioned and out-dated. So, if you want to market OTF, you have to come up with something new and fresh. Good luck.

hobbie
Moderator
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 09:24
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Quoting: soka
I know I was intimidated by Hobbie because he just had been promoted to CL5 back then


You didn't stay intimidated for very long. Unfortunately.

soka
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 10:34 · Edited by: soka
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*lol* no, I noticed pretty quickly that even the high-ranked are nothing but humans too ... would you want me to be intimidated again? *is nervous*

hobbie
Moderator
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 15:07
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No. It just wouldn't be the same the second time around.

demonvamp
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 16:10
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Quoting: aeon
The problem OTF is facing is that chat rooms are just not popular anymore.


Aeon is right, I think. With Skype, various messengers and (spits) facebook people have other ways to keep in touch. I, for one, really don't have the time much any more to sit in chat, in fact, I honestly prefer to frequent the forums, or various blogs, where I can do things at my leisure.

The forums are the liveliest part of the site these days, maybe we should also put more focus on them, with plenty of info.

Chats come and go, but everyone loves a good thread.

david1
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 19:38 · Edited by: david1
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Quoting: darth_balco
Simple, by just chatting. That's all we gotta do. I remember people could spend a good amount of hours just chatting with someone, having a good time. There's not too much of that these days.


If i want to chat, i chat to people in a game by shouting down the mic, or on facebook on a social networking site where 1,000,000's of people can join in or even simpluar instant messaging!. What is a good reason to chat here? chatting is just outdated .... as aeon said...

Quoting: aeon
The problem OTF is facing is that chat rooms are just not popular anymore


I couldnt have said it better

Anyway.. let me put this from a buisness point of view ...
If a product isnt doing well, they either promote it more ... or get rid of it alltogether, there isnt another option, because if you leave it as it is, it turns into a thorn in the foot, which is hard to remove.
And currently the thorn in Otf's foot is its over-relience on the chatroom, and its pumped so much effort and resource into it, and all its done is alienate its customers i.e. the users.

What other product does otf have that doesnt involve the chatroom?
just the forums.

Go back 7-8 years, otf had competitions, contests, games, chatroom and forums.

Just a rant lol
David

rpmobsession
Member
# Posted: 5 Jan 2009 21:52
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Not to be gloom and doom, but....I thought we downsized for a reason? And, to be honest, since the downsizing...there hasn't been much change in activity at all as far as chatrooms or forums go. But, I'll just sink back into the shadows like a good sedated old timer.

polson
Member
# Posted: 6 Jan 2009 06:20
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Okay - sorry I have had a crazy work rotation from the seventh circle of hell. I just finally read all this and am going to catch up on my OTF work here in the next three days.

Some preliminary thoughts:

Er...keep in mind, this is my own Polsonish way of saying my own Polsonish opinions - I do not necessarily represent Hal, Iain and Hobbie's positions. So if you don't like what I have to say, be angry at ME.

1. Ohmylanta. If I hear another person whine about the good old days and how much fun OTF used to be and how it's not fun anymore, I'm going to pop a vein in my forehead. I've been listening to that same old song and dance since 1999. OTF is as fun as YOU make it. That's why I still like it, because I have fun. I go into the chat with the attitude that I like OTF and that it's fun to be here. If you go into the chat with the attitude that OTF sucks and does not live up to your expectations or standards, do us all a favor and go find yourself another chatroom.

2. I intimidated plenty of people as a CL4 for more years than you've been at OTF. So there.

3. More seriously - I really like the idea of becoming "the source" for some upcoming sci fi stuff. It would be really awesome if Dierna's sci fi news could be created into an official part of the site where people, OTF and newcomerse could pop in to see what the latest buzz is in upcoming movies and series and whatnot. I think that would be a really big contributer to the site overall, for members and bringing in new interest. Now I don't know if Dierna would want to head that up, or if she'd just want to be on the team, or if she hates that idea, but it's definately a ball we should play with.

4. It would not be a bad thing to put a spotlight on our forum, perhaps expanding it to have a stronger focus on sci fi and fantasy genres instead of being prodominently OTF centered. Naturally, we couldn't loose that aspect because this is where we do a lot of our communicating and chatter, but we could ADD to that I think.

5. Chatrooms vs. Facebook/myspace/skype/whatever. Frankly, I've had more fun with OTF over the years than anything else on the internet. Should the chatroom die here - well, I think I'd actually pick up my bags and go. I already have facebook. And frankly, I'm not looking to create the next international messaging system. I'm dead set against making OTF into some kind of sci fi myspace. Seriously, if you're that ambitious and that determined, go make it somewhere else. Have fun.

6. Incorperating more genres: I've tried everything I can think of to get people to submit chattops with no success. I even told people they could draw it on a piece of paper, scan it, and send it in. No one but Michiel had submitted anything. If the current members of OTF don't actually care as much as they say they do, I don't know how I'm supposed to make it happen - or why I'm busting my buns trying to make it happen only to have people complain that we haven't accomplished this yet.

7. I think there is a lot of merit in the keeping new members argument vs. reaching more members. I've seen several newbies in the last month, and I've seen them be ignored by regular members, or toyed with, or mocked. I've seen new members in chat alone, talking to the walls, wondering where everyone is. And when we have sudden influxes of people after movie releases, they all disappear within months. Why aren't we forming friendships with these people? THAT'S what will keep them around. Personal connections. Remembering that first time they came into OTF and another member paid genuine attention to them. My person was Katrina. I still remember it, even though it was ten years ago. I don't think I'll ever forget it, because it had nothing to do with the chatroom and everything to do with that person who made a sincere attempt to connect with me.

We can have the fanciest chatroom/website on the entire interent and if we are cold hearted machines who could care less about the latest newbie who just wandered off the information highway, we will have the exact same problems many of you are describing now.

8. At the moment we have many apathetic or busy Team Leaders who have no interest or no time to commit to competitions, contests and games. I am personally at my wits end over this. I don't want to axe people and remove people from their teams, and I have sent people personal emails (often ignored) and I have made non-judgemental opportuneties for these TL's to ask for help or trade their leadership off to someone who is able to put in the time and effort. Still, they hang onto their positions and do nothing. I am at the point where either I have to completely eliminate those teams, or start "firing" TL's and replacing them. I'll be completely honest - I don't like those options. I appreciate fully the people who volunteer their time and hearts for OTF - I don't want to have to sweep that away so calously, but I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place.

And I'm open to dialoge and suggestions on that too. Either here or privately. And any TL's who think I might be talking about you, well - you've still got time to come to me one on one.

soka
Member
# Posted: 6 Jan 2009 11:12
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ok ... I've read the whole thing (about as long as my last mail to the Trivia Cmd-list)


1 - I don't see a post from Ohm anywhere. .. maybe I'm just blind too.
I agree with OTF is as fun as we make it - even more, if you go in expecting to have fun you are more likely to enter a fun conversation, maybe even start it yourself. Which in turn increases the chance of you expecting fun next time you enter again.

2 - Like I always say, there is no way anyone can change how long they have been at OTF

3 - There is a Forum I used to go to, they merged with another site about oh ... 2 years ago now I suppose. Now, I don't suggest we do the same, but it gave them a lot of boost - two large sites merging. They also cooperate with a large sf-mailing-list, and were mentioned a few times in an sf-magazine I'm reading. They've found their way of marketing - we need to find our own.

4 - This Forum has got a topic for many sf-series where people discuss it, post news and just talk about it. Now ... it is (or used to be) a standalone-forum, just the Forum (and an IRC-chat) - but maybe a mini-form of such a thing might be possible here. We don't talk that much about series or movies in the chat, so maybe take it to the Forum.

5 - I make no secret of the fact taht I hate myspace and facebook (see my dossier) ... it's just too impersonal. The huge amount of people who can comment at you is a reason against it ... but that's my view.

6 - I know I know ... I said I'd send you one or two - and I even fixed my PC's monitor which makes things easier. But .. well, I keep getting stuck with RL and avatars and Trivia. I'll try and finish them up today.

7 - I fully agree. Which brings us back to people actually entering instead of lurking in the spycam/personnel-list and going in with an attitude expecting fun.

8 - I hope you don't mean me ... but speaking for myself, I don't even know which teams survived the clean-up ... I don't think any team really was scrapped in the end ... they all requested to survive or something.
I know I asked for a list of surviving teams right after for replacing the departmental link-list on the Trivia HP and noone could tell me.


============


On another note, there is a checkbox in the Dossier Management somehow whether or not you want to get a quarter-yearly newsletter - I haven't gotten one since I registered, I suppose it's broken or has been forgotten. Sending one might be a way to remind old-timers of this place ..?

polson
Member
# Posted: 6 Jan 2009 16:21
Reply 


...we have a newsletter? *l* I'll have to look into that.

Also, I love the way Soka always numbers her points to match mine, in email and forums, wherever.

#8 - Soka, you're a fantastic team leader. I do not mean you.

soka
Member
# Posted: 6 Jan 2009 17:52
Reply 


just to avoid confusion or having to summarize what you wrote so it's understandable - would make my posts even longer

well... there is a checkbox. But like I said I haven't gotten a single one in all my time here. I suppose it's a fossil which just hasn't been removed, just like the Show BNT-score in Dossier (and no, I do not want to start th bring-back BNT discussion over, just mentioning as example of another outdated checkbox)

richard_smith
Member
# Posted: 6 Jan 2009 18:26
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Quoting: darth_balco
Honestly, we just need to market ourselves as a chatroom. Scrap everything else but the chatroom. Get rid of the ranks, get rid of the teams, get rid of everything but the chat. Let's just make it a chatroom. No forums, no departments,no projects, just a chatroom.


Sorry Darth, but I think you are wrong. I think all of those things are part of the charm of this place. I have enjoyed getting involved around here. It is a stress relief for me as I dont have the money to go out anymore *laughs* Teams are around for anyone who has said "this place would be great if". If we just scrap that and all that comes with it, I think we would be losing part of what makes this place great.

I do agree with you that this should be marketed as a place to meet great people and have a good time, that is very true. My belief is that the problem is only part ours though. As the franchises we focus on haven't created buzz or even declined, fewer people are coming in as a result. Fewer people are getting interested and therefore not looking us up. When the Star Wars Prequils were still being released people were looking us up. Lord of the Rings brought some people our way too. With a new Star Trek Movie coming out in the next few months we may see more people coming around. I think we are caught in the ebb and flow of pop culture. Branching out into new areas like Dr. Who and Stargate etc. is a very good idea. It cant hurt us and can only bring more people with a unique point of view to our little piece of the web.

polson
Member
# Posted: 6 Jan 2009 19:22
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I guess the question is - as a community what is our Vision for OTF?

Are we trying to be the best damn sci fi site on the web?

Are we trying to be the best chat site on the web?

Are we trying to create a place where we can have nerd fun?

Etc. etc....

david1
Member
# Posted: 6 Jan 2009 19:58 · Edited by: david1
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Personally ... id love to see otf as a Internet Sci-Fi and Fantasy Hub.

Thats My Vision.

I think Pols has a point though, without clear vision, we're just a bunch of ducks in a pond...

and this brings back some old thoughts, some of the dictators of old who use to be in charge of otf, yes people had issues, but when it comes to it, they had a clear vision of how they saw otf, and right or wrong, they stuck to their vision.

lzrman
Member
# Posted: 7 Jan 2009 04:02
Reply 


Quoting: david1
without clear vision, we're just a bunch of ducks in a pond...


Duck Duck Gooooooooooose!!! wait that Old Timer is back?!

demonvamp
Member
# Posted: 7 Jan 2009 17:46
Reply 


I'd like a fun newsletter, with links contributed or found and the whole thing archived as well as sent out and not just stuff pertaining to OTF... or at all.

Youtube is your friend here *l*


1984.... of the memories....

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