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Why Isn't Anyone Joining My Guild?


by squekepiggie123

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A number of times I have entered the guild boards to find hopeless guild leaders posting the question "why isn't anyone joining my guild?" While the answer is in part due to the advertising techniques of the guild leader and in even larger part due to the poor quality of their guild set up (in comparison to their "successful" guilds of Neopia), I will, in this article, attempt to explore the former of these issues. Hopefully, with this article, my readers will become more effective recruiters and act as a catalyst for the growth of their guild.

The Advertisement

The actual words that you use to advertise your guild are very important. Including the link in your ad is always helpful and makes the guild easily accessible. Despite what some people may say, pre-made ads are definitely a good way to go. I have found that the most effective pre-made is in list form, with the link to the guild at the bottom. Big advertisements in paragraph form, while seemingly creative and thoughtful, are often overlooked by the average guild searcher. Many just want to see things simple and straight forward. Now, what about those Neopians who suggest that the advertiser not post pre-mades? Well, post the link, the guild name and add a few comments of your own. In fact it is most effective if you post a few personal comments with every advertisement. If the searcher is asking for an “active and friendly guild,“ be sure to mention your great members and say how active they are. Now, you should not lie. If your guild is new and is NOT active, but you come across a person who is looking for an active guild, be sure to tell them that, while your guild does not offer what they are searching for at the moment, the guild could have it in the future: “All we need is more members like you!”

Say the guild searcher writes:

“Post here if your guild is well developed. New guild welcome as long as they are willing to give me a spot on council! Also, if not new, I’d rather be in a guild that is active, has 1np auctions, newbie packs, etc.”

To this you may respond:

“My guild is relatively new, and while I can’t promise council yet... we do have council open and will be chosen at 20 members (we are at 17 right now). We are active and do offer newbie packs.” This would be followed by a copy & paste ad and link.

It is much better to tell your potential member exactly how it is at your guild, and then hint at what it could be (most effective in brand new guilds). While it may seem that you may be turning the guildless away by stating what you do not have to offer, you are actually being honest and providing a more friendly tone to your advertisement, not to mention performing the once-thought impossible: making your pre-made advertisement unique!

Note: Obviously don’t lie about what it could be either. This strategy is most effective when the guild leader is advertising, for they already know what they have in mind for the future of the guild.

If you are creating your own board to advertise your guild be sure to write the name of your guild and some characters or smilies in the topic to make your name stand out. For boards you made you most likely only need to post your pre-made, and perhaps a little more in other posts to keep your board bumped up (avoid spamming).

Greater Power in Numbers

Now that you know what to write, the question is how to write it. By this I mean, what techniques are best for getting your advertisement out there? If you are advertising alone it is best to have more than one window open. Try one window open for making your own board advertising the guild and then another one open to refresh and look for new “guildless” boards. I myself like to have three windows open: two for making my own advertising boards and maintaining them.

If you already have members in your guild and they happen to be on, invite them to advertise with you. The more people you have advertising, the more people will notice your guild. You can also start advertising boards where your members can gather and chat while at the same time attracting attention to your guild. These stay at the top of the guild boards longer than boards created by individuals and also show that your guild is active.

It’s the Leader’s Job

The guild leader cannot depend on its members to advertise. While offering incentives to members who advertise is a nice way to get their members to help in the effort, it should be the leader’s responsibility to make sure that people are referring, and, above all, refer with their members, and then some. Too often, leaders think that once they get a few members that they no longer have to refer. However, the leader should constantly refer until they have reached a guild member count they are satisfied with. No one knows the guild like the leader, and that advantage attracts more members.

Board Etiquette

Have you ever seen those boards where the topic is something like “guildless...” and you enter thinking the person is looking for a guild, only to find an advertisement and a taunting statement “I got you to come in.” I have frequently seen this scenario (or something to that effect) played out on the guild boards. The fact is, this is not an effective way of advertising. The only people you get to come to those type of boards are those who already have guilds. These people obviously like their guilds enough to be advertising them, so very rarely will you get members with this “guildless” act.

Also, try to avoid posting your advertisement on boards started by other guild advertisements. While it may get you members, it just annoys the original poster.

If a guildless user neomails you saying that they are considering joining your guild but they want to check out their other guilds first, be nice to them. Say “take your time,” and maybe start a conversation (as long as you are not annoying them). Your kindness may help them make their final decision and draw them towards your guild.

Keeping the Members

Whenever you advertise make sure you have a window open to your guild message board. There should always be someone on the guild boards when a new member joins. Good members want to see that the guild is active. If there is not anyone on to greet them, the potential active member is more likely to leave shortly after joining. Some guild leaders have also been known to send neomails welcoming new members as they come in. This is a great tool to utilize when looking to make your new members active, and at the same time make them feel some obligation to their new guild. Mention to the new member that you cannot wait to see them on the guild boards some time if they have not posted already, thank them for joining, and direct their attention to the major activities of the guild and where to find them. This early neomail will not only get them well acquainted with the guild, but also, perhaps, make them less likely to leave so soon (if they were to have any doubt to begin with).

Remember, referring the members is half the battle; while this article may help you with your referring techniques, nothing beats a nice looking guild with tons of activities! So make those guilds beautiful, happy referring, and good luck!

 
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