Posted in business in SL, Clover's Kitchen, Shopping!

Am I just behind the times?

Photo: Teleny Macarthur

So I’ve been running Clover’s Kitchen for something to the tune of 3 and a half years now. One of the things that I do, that I’ve been doing since the beginning, is manually inviting customers one-by-one into the shop group. I don’t believe in using Subscribe-O-Matics because they make it difficult for an unwilling customer to leave (click and “leave group” from the comfort of your own home is way simpler), they’re abused and mistrusted, and they rely on sending notecards. Nobody usually READS notecards.

The oldschool SL group, on the other hand, enables me to program my vendors so that group members get special deals (like the monthly group-only dollarbie); they get the message and a LM right away, logged on or not, and–most importantly to me–they are in the group because they actively chose to be.

And so at least once per week I round up the names of those who have made a purchase from me, and one by one, I add them to the “invite” list for the shop group. Then I send the invitation. Those who are already in, never get the duplicate invitation (god damn, LL did something logical! Good going!). Those who want in, click “accept”. Those who don’t, click “decline”. The list gets purged, life goes on. In the three and a half years of using this method, I’ve gotten two complaints from people.

The second arrived just a short while ago. I got IMed: “please im me before spanning me.” I hope she’s all right with me ignoring her and closing the chat because that struck me as the kindest and most honest thing I could do. Like I say, if you don’t want in the group, I don’t want you in it either. So… click “decline”.

So am I just behind the times here? I figured a quick opt-in group invite sent once would be way less rude than, say, IMing her out of the blue first. She apparently does not agree. And I think it’s way WAY less rude than my just putting you on a list for a Spam-o-Matic machine that spits notecards at you whether you like it or not, and forcing you to come back into the shop in order to (hope that you) remove yourself from said list.

Am I mistaken?



2 thoughts on “Am I just behind the times?

  1. Hi,

    well first time i answer here but i like you blog, it helped us get started in SL and this is finally something i think i can add an idea.

    First of all, yes i also like SL group more than Subscribe-O-Matics.

    I personally hate, and i really mean hate it when i get group invitations out of the blue. Just figer me standing on my home sim, scripting something when i get the invitation. If this happens, normally i click decline, cause most of the times i do not know which group that is, and i certainly do not read the groupinfo. It just disrupt me and i hate this.

    Here is what we do instead:

    We sell two lines, one is for furniture and other things to make your SL nicer and one is for Business, like vendor, rentalsystems and sriptpackages.

    With every propduct we send a little prim, which can be rezzed and gives out an LM, an NC with News (automatically over a server, so you always get the current News, regardless when you bought the product) and an automatic groupinvite per Bot (so it looks like an invitation from a real person). If the cutomers rezes this item he can chosse what he wants.

    In addition we IM every buyer who bought something of the business line. We write an IM saying, thanks that you bought this item, if you need any help setting it up contact us and if you want an groupinvite to get information about new products and free items, just IM us.

    In two year we never got a complain about this, just the contrary we get a lot of answer from customers, who are very surprised about this good service. We do it only for the business line, not for the other cause i just do not have the time to do both. 🙂

    I think this is a far better way. Yes it takes time and sometimes, i hate myself for this idea, but it brings us closer to our customers, if you IM them, then loose the fear of asking questions and a lot of good customer relationships came out of this IMs.

    1. First thing, I’m flattered to hear that my blog was helpful in getting you started. Thank you.

      I’ve been thinking about your reply and it makes me think that maybe it is time to take a different approach. A bot seems a bit complicated and expensive for my personal tastes, but, much of what you describe I can probably do without the aid of one.

      Thanks for the suggestion, and thanks for reading!

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