Saturday, March 1, 2008

More on hunts & gifts

Ivey Deschanel of Sn@tch wrote a blog post today about a situation that occurred when she was giving away a gift. Ivey likes to have people hunt for her gifts, which is sometimes cool, sometimes not. Face it, if SL is laggy, who the hell wants to stand around searching for a gift when it hurts to move your cam or walk? But I always enjoy her gifts when I'm able to go out there and get them because I think she's an extremely talented creator, so it's usually worth a little extra effort on my part to go out and look around.

I am always amazed when designers say that people yell at them or request other gifts other than the one being offered. That is just plain bad taste and poor upbringing on the part of the person showing their ass like that. The word "trash" comes to mind. These are probably the people who make a whole day of it at Sams Club or CostCo, hitting up every free sample in the store - three times. They are NOT representative of the entire community of gift lovers.

However, as appreciative as most everyone is of the gifts that the wonderful designers of SL give out, the designers must know by now that if they say "free," 10 people are showing up at once, with 10 more a couple of minutes later. People like being first. They like to grab the stuff and show off to friends and pass out landmarks. It's just the way it works. But it's true, most do not stick around to shop - at that moment.

When 20 people hit up your store at once, usually wearing 10,000 prims, scripted items, poofers, and the like, it's going to lag it down. Just a fact. Personally, I don't enjoy sticking around like that and it's getting to where I don't go running anymore when a gift is announced unless I REALLY REALLY love the store and I'm not doing anything else at the time and it's not a limited time offer. So yes, I will teleport in, grab the item, and leave. But I almost always return to the store later, and I believe many people are like that. So while there may be 40 people in the store at once and not a sale is made, that doesn't mean that sales won't be made later.

I love great gifts because that shows me what a designer is made of. It's getting to try something on to make sure that the designer knows how to do a good seam, or doesn't make their skirts crazy huge and unable to be resized down, etc. It lets me see if I WANT to spend my money in their place. If they give a terrible gift, I don't go back. End of discussion. If their item is fabulous, then I go back during my downtime and check out the rest. So while you might see me pop in, grab it, and run, that doesn't mean that I'm being greedy. That means I just want to see what the gift is and try it on in the privacy of my fairly lag free home. I think most people are the same way. There are many times in my RL I run into a store, grab one thing, and go. [Well, I pay for it, of course.] This doesn't mean that I'm not interested in the store as a whole. This means I have other things I need to be doing and I don't have time to examine the entire store. I'll come back later when I have time.

Ivey also brought up that people were basically just saying where the gift was in her store. You all know my stance on super hard hunts. I LIKE treasure hunts. I really do, I think they're loads of fun - except when they're not. They cease to be fun when people cannot find the gift at all on their own. But simple hunt or extra hard, there will ALWAYS be people who take the easy way out and get help. ALWAYS. I had to do it on one of the Valentine's Day hunts because some gifts were just too hard to find in certain stores. I'd prefer to be able to find it myself, but as someone who has spent over 30 minutes hunting for one little gift before, I just don't have the time to do that these days. I always feel disappointed when I see a hunt gift blogged and I wasn't able to get to the store and get it, or I just never could find it, but it's still never enough to make me act like a fool in the designer's IM box.

I guess everything, from being trashy and screaming that you hate a designer because you couldn't find the gift or you wanted something else instead to hiding your gifts under a rock under a box under a cat, can be solved with one little phrase:

Don't be an asshole.

Now I'm REALLY going to take a nap. I have a feeling I've got one leg in the Crankypants right now.


WillowC said...

I completely agree with you here - freebies are a fab way to try before you buy. I especially like it when they come up on FashCon - I have a folder in my inventory called "Things I Must Buy" and good freebies get popped in there to remind me to go to that store on my next shopping excursion! So yes, while I completely see why it's annoying designers when the Freebie Army marches in, I think the long term benefits are good, at least among people who make a purchase or two during the month: you're in the person's inventory, you've proved you're worth a visit and your stuff is being seen - on people and on the feed. What could be wrong with that!

M said...

I'll echo Willow's comment in that I agree completely. Believe me, I buy lots of stuff (much to my partner's chagrin), but I also love freebies, especially good quality freebies. And yes I will TP into a store, grab a freebie, and then TP out to go try it on, check out the quality, and then decide later if I want to go back or not. I've found several of my favorite stores this way, and I guarantee that the thousands of Linden dollars I have spent have MORE than made up for that freebie I grabbed months ago.

Another thing - as an SL Mentor, I like keeping abreast of what places offer lots of good freebies that I can direct new residents to. Although it's not personally MY style, Sn@tch is one of those places, and I've given her landmark out to many newbies (read: potential customers) as a place they can go to get a bunch of free stuff to hopefully outfit their avatar with and look a little less "new".

All in al I think the moral of this story is that as potential customers we need to be appreciative of those designers that do choose to put out freebies, and that designers need to understand that freebies can serve as a great marketing tool and that not all freebie-hunters are ungrateful cheapskates.

Alicia Chenaux said...

Thanks ladies, you both said my point a lot more clearly and a lot less cranky than I was coming across. :)