Suggestion for membership drive

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Chicago X
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Suggestion for membership drive

Hi all,

I've noticed the disparity between registered members and visitor numbers, often 5-to-1 or more.

What would you think of a members-only area where the giveaways would be hosted, in an effort to convert the 'browsers' to 'members?'

If that's too much work or too divisive, maybe some "newbie only" giveaways are in order ?

Thoughts?

http://wardogsmakingithome.org/index.html

War Dogs, Making it Home - Rescue Dogs for Returning Vets

taz
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It is not just about converting them, I think it is also about making them actively participate, to write a message every now and then... although I think the addiction comes sooner or later...

 

One common method used to "force" more people to register in a forum, is making images and links (urls) visible only to members. So someone who comes to read a review, would read it just fine, but if they want it to see the images (product photos, beamshots, measurements etc) they would have to register. Same with the links, we help each other in here by providing links to products etc, guests would be able to read a thread but not see the links in the messages...

Chicago X
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Excellent perspective.  

Denying the "outsiders" Foy's photos, or the links to the good deals is a good idea.

http://wardogsmakingithome.org/index.html

War Dogs, Making it Home - Rescue Dogs for Returning Vets

taz
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It works great! Can you imagine reading a review without the images? Or reading about finding a good deal, or where to find a replacement driver without being able to see the link? You go immediately to register button! Silly

 

This can also be done selectively, leave some subforums to "full view" for the guests, and make the rest like I described...

PilotPTK
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Chicago X wrote:

Excellent perspective.  

Denying the "outsiders" Foy's photos, or the links to the good deals is a good idea.

Consider this my vote for NOT doing this.  I use forums for a lot of topics, and when I first start looking for a proper forum for my interest, this is one thing that will turn me off to it in an instant.  I'll register after lurking a bit and getting a feel for the neighborhood, but if I can't even enjoy myself while lurking, there is absolutely no chance of me becoming a registered member.  Protected "member's only" areas are actually far more likely to entice me to join.

PPtk

I am currently extremely busy with work. Please do not expect a response from me quickly. I will be dropping in as time permits, but the amount of time I can dedicate to responding to topics and PMs is very limited.

taz
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The only forums that I ever turned away from, are forums that to even read the content you have to subscribe first. Forums that require simple registration to view links & images don't bother me, there are many out there, for example ones that post links to file downloading. It is not a big deal to register once, then have your browser to automatically log you in every time you visit...

Gorbag
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Giving the lurkers access to information is good.  Let them peruse at their leisure, and entice them with a "secret club" if they want to get to the good stuff.  Sharing the knowledge is good, but if they want access to free stuff, I'd say make them register.

That and I'd also put access to spiffy deals, listings for discount codes and other stuff like that in the member's area, too.

 

Or we could just beat them with sticks.

 a dream, I've got to stop eating pickles before I go to bed.

ezarc
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If it was a members only area I wouldn't bother signing up to look in there, there is also no way for them to know about give-aways in there etc. 

Just like when I joined BLF, I checked out multiple websites before joining. I did't sign up to any of them.

If I am looking for information and see that I need to register to see links or images or search I just close the page and go somewhere else.

I don't see any benefit in making/forcing people to join either, if BLF was like that I wouldn't have signed up. 

I think give-aways not in any special area would likely make more people join, because they can see it and might sign up to take part rather than sign up to see whats inside a members area. 

taz
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10 seconds to come up with a user name and password, and then set your browser to login is not a big deal, is it? I haven't typed my log in info ever since I registered...

 

Also to me it doesn't sound so nice the "if I don't find it for free and 100% available I will go elsewhere"... the 10 seconds to register-and-then-forget-about-it to me is a small tribute especially to the people that spend their free time doing those wonderful and detailed reviews, full of nice images, explanatory charts, and on top of that providing help to the users that pose questions, all without any form of payment... it's not like reading everyday world news... so as I said, this is the least that maybe we could do...

 

 

Huny74
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+1 on PilotPTK (out of some unknown reason I cannot quote anymore?)

This was the main reason I never registered at the other place in the first place when my flashlight interest came to a more than average life and BLF didn't yet exist. To me this "members only" stuff has an elitist touch which I don't like.

Leelou
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taz wrote:

It is not just about converting them, I think it is also about making them actively participate, to write a message every now and then... although I think the addiction comes sooner or later...

 

One common method used to "force" more people to register in a forum, is making images and links (urls) visible only to members. So someone who comes to read a review, would read it just fine, but if they want it to see the images (product photos, beamshots, measurements etc) they would have to register. Same with the links, we help each other in here by providing links to products etc, guests would be able to read a thread but not see the links in the messages...

That annoys me. Not a good idea.

I like: walks on the beach, sushi and things that are paisley.

ezarc
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taz wrote:

10 seconds to come up with a user name and password, and then set your browser to login is not a big deal, is it? I haven't typed my log in info ever since I registered...

 

Also to me it doesn't sound so nice the "if I don't find it for free and 100% available I will go elsewhere"... the 10 seconds to register-and-then-forget-about-it to me is a small tribute especially to the people that spend their free time doing those wonderful and detailed reviews, full of nice images, explanatory charts, and on top of that providing help to the users that pose questions, all without any form of payment... it's not like reading everyday world news... so as I said, this is the least that maybe we could do...

 

 

And check your email for a activation link then go to the site and sign in and then find what you were looking for again to find out it doesnt have the information you wanted in the first place.

And what is the point of members having to sign up if they will never return again? How is someone signing up a tribute to anything?

If they don't contribute anyway how is signing up benefiting anyone? Its just a empty account and information stored on the server  forever without any use.

And yes if it isn't free and 100% available, like most I would go somewhere else. 

ezarc
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Chicago X wrote:

maybe some "newbie only" giveaways are in order ?

Thoughts?

I like the idea but it would be hard to stop people from making new accounts to enter. 

taz
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ezarc wrote:

And check your email for a activation link then go to the site and sign in and then find what you were looking for again to find out it doesnt have the information you wanted in the first place.

 

And yes if it isn't free and 100% available, like most I would go somewhere else. 

 

We are talking about the images and the links only, no the entire messages. So according to your view, the information most users seek is visual aka the images, so no images make the site worthless to visit, even more worthless to register, regardless of the quality of the content of a message... this is what is sounds like. Yes it does work fine on big (and healthy-run) forums, people who are members of such forums will already know this.

 

So talking about flashlights in specific, if it is not available here (talking about the images again), your other "elsewhere" option would be Gretta... Silly

 

What is your take on what Chicago X asked regarding getting more members? Criticizing is easy, I haven't heard any other suggestions...

fishmaniac
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If it aint broke....

C-channel
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I do Prefer for BLF to stay the way it is now...

That was how I got started the hobby. Comparing to the CPF, Bright side.

I do feel for BLF more.

Just my humble opinion.

How bright is bright enough...

Runtime VS Lumens...

ezarc
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@taz 

I'm not trying to criticize but just say that if things like that happened it would result in less members and not more. 

I don't have any suggestions and think its fine just the way it is. 

Vectrex
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Pics only visible upon registration? That is a horrible idea... this is how CPFism starts. We want to convince members to register through good content and the benefit of being "one of us". You would also keep me as a registered member to look at BLF pics at work, because I can't/won't log in there most of the time.

BetweenRides
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Leave it as is, please. Most forums have far more viewers than members. That's the way life is - most people don't want to speak up and join in, staying in the background is just fine. I've done it many times on sites where I was just looking for specific info, not interested in becoming a member just to answer a question. If we want to encourage new membership, let's do it with a positive method, not a negative one.

The restrictiveness of CPF towards new members almost turned me off completely to researching flashlights. Thankfully I kept searching and found BLF - the most open and friendly forum I've ever been on. Let me repeat:

Leave it as is, please.

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IMO those who are really interested will join sooner or later. I'm no fan of boards that force you to register. When I started lurking here, I felt like being a member already. Not really a difference.

Also dont forget that a lot of these guests are crawlers.

scaru
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@Nightcrawl. I totally agree the friendly community is what should encourage people to join not being forced into it.

jacktheclipper
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BetweenRides wrote:

Leave it as is, please. Most forums have far more viewers than members. That's the way life is - most people don't want to speak up and join in, staying in the background is just fine. I've done it many times on sites where I was just looking for specific info, not interested in becoming a member just to answer a question. If we want to encourage new membership, let's do it with a positive method, not a negative one.

The restrictiveness of CPF towards new members almost turned me off completely to researching flashlights. Thankfully I kept searching and found BLF - the most open and friendly forum I've ever been on. Let me repeat:

Leave it as is, please.

This .

Lensman
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I have to say, the only reason - as a non-flashaholic - that I actually joined BLF was because of the complete absence of all the elitist red tape that was such a turn-off over at that DX sponsored place. I'd have to vote 'no' to anything that takes the smallest step in that direction.

The message, however tactfully it might be phrased, that "Sorry you are not authorised/ do not have enough priviledges to access this page/area/information.." will instantly put me off.

Also, as some of the others have said, I'd question the value of increased membership that's the result of people joining just to access information, or worse, to participate in a giveaway. Do we really need extra members like that? People who want to join in and contribute will usually do so anyway sooner or later, surely? 

Langcjl
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Vectrex wrote:

Pics only visible upon registration? That is a horrible idea... this is how CPFism starts. We want to convince members to register through good content and the benefit of being "one of us". You would also keep me as a registered member to look at BLF pics at work, because I can't/won't log in there most of the time.

+1 and +1 to between rides above.

Piers said " ....but who wants enough light, when you have the option for far too much "

Langcjl
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Lensman wrote:

I have to say, the only reason - as a non-flashaholic - that I actually joined BLF was because of the complete absence of all the elitist red tape that was such a turn-off over at that DX sponsored place. I'd have to vote 'no' to anything that takes the smallest step in that direction.

The message, however tactfully it might be phrased, that "Sorry you are not authorised/ do not have enough priviledges to access this page/area/information.." will instantly put me off.

Also, as some of the others have said, I'd question the value of increased membership that's the result of people joining just to access information, or worse, to participate in a giveaway. Do we really need extra members like that? People who want to join in and contribute will usually do so anyway sooner or later, surely? 

That too. Wish I knew how to quote multiple posts.

Piers said " ....but who wants enough light, when you have the option for far too much "

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Langcjl wrote:

Vectrex wrote:

Pics only visible upon registration? That is a horrible idea... this is how CPFism starts. We want to convince members to register through good content and the benefit of being "one of us". You would also keep me as a registered member to look at BLF pics at work, because I can't/won't log in there most of the time.

+1 and +1 to between rides above.

pretty much agree

if you build it (and post it), they will come

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T.H.Cone
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I agree with everything from Fishmaniac down.  Why would we want to take hostages?  The vibe of this community will keep bringing new members in that really want to be here.  Coercion only leads to resentment.

fidem, prae caeteris omnibus praeter honestatem

 

 

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taz
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So actually Chicago X's suggestion about getting more members is not a good idea, since guests and members should have the same access to content...

 

Thus why shouldn't guests be allowed to post without being members? This also happens in blogs and forums with the use of captcha to avoid spam and bots of course. Or now maybe guests being able to post is not a good idea? Silly

sb56637
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I think that all of the generous BLF users who do giveaways and organize group buys are already doing us a huge favor in this regard. Many of the giveaways are open to anybody, and all the group buys are open to everyone. So a lurker only has to register here to benefit from them. And invariably many new ones do register in order to participate in giveaways and group buys. I would also prefer to keep BLF as open as possible.

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T.H.Cone
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taz wrote:

So actually Chicago X's suggestion about getting more members is not a good idea, since guests and members should have the same access to content...

 

Thus why shouldn't guests be allowed to post without being members? This also happens in blogs and forums with the use of captcha to avoid spam and bots of course. Or now maybe guests being able to post is not a good idea? Silly

New and active members would be great, but the ones that want to be here will eventually join.  For instance, I lurked for about a year before you guys won me over; a decision some of you regret.  Silly  

fidem, prae caeteris omnibus praeter honestatem

 

 

Don't be confused, my Username has been changed from "Cone" to "T.H.Cone".  I'm still the same clown.

zeroed4x
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Langcjl wrote:

Lensman wrote:

I have to say, the only reason - as a non-flashaholic - that I actually joined BLF was because of the complete absence of all the elitist red tape that was such a turn-off over at that DX sponsored place. I'd have to vote 'no' to anything that takes the smallest step in that direction.

The message, however tactfully it might be phrased, that "Sorry you are not authorised/ do not have enough priviledges to access this page/area/information.." will instantly put me off.

Also, as some of the others have said, I'd question the value of increased membership that's the result of people joining just to access information, or worse, to participate in a giveaway. Do we really need extra members like that? People who want to join in and contribute will usually do so anyway sooner or later, surely? 

That too. Wish I knew how to quote multiple posts.

If it were members only I would have assumed that it was like the elitist snobs with the same B.S. at CPF. Being rather new, from my perspective but at the same time as a professional sale man, people can not lust after or want something they can not see. To create the want and the need is visual. If there are lurkers out there, they will come in when they see the content if they are truly interested. If they are only curious they would come in and clog up the member list with dead accounts. I can understand the desire for new members but at the same time, it is happening, new BLF members are coming simply because of the "Cluster F" that perpetuates at CPF. I believe that BLF will be much more successful than CPF as a Forum and not an Online Catalog for a select few vendors who all must bow to, bought from and worshiped. I like this place because its not about the money, its about sharing our passion for lights. 

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