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How can I help the Game?
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-CRIMSON
Mon Apr 09 2012, 11:09AM
-CRIMSON
Registered Member #18
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 03:49AM
Posts: 207
and there lies the problem with advertisement.




everything a person does to promote nero is FREE.


the people that are HIRED to promote coco cola,fast food chains, best buys and rap music. they all get paid way more than free.



so basically unless nero international hires an advertising person to do it right. youll get as much FREE as free offers. which is baseline. basically someone bored or lonely enough to help out without reward.

and how do you hire advertising?


owners paying royalties religiously.



and how do you manage finances properly once owners pay their royalties?


open books and proper fund allocation




right now all we have are a bunch of slackers who may or may not pay rent and a secret landlord. i could be completely wrong. which i usually am. so no offense to my owner homies that work hard to keep nero financially stable.


there needs to be an open system that produces results.






[ Edited Mon Apr 09 2012, 11:36AM ]
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-CRIMSON
Mon Apr 09 2012, 11:39AM
-CRIMSON
Registered Member #18
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 03:49AM
Posts: 207
dan has the right idea as well. there are a ton of blockades preventing people from literally walking up to us. picking up a weapon and hitting us in the woods. needs to be simple.



maybe provide each chapter with a "new player setup" where all someone has to do is show up. and they have a whole package laid out and ready to jump into the fray.


when you go mini golfing, they give you the golf clubs. and the holes are ready for you.

[ Edited Mon Apr 09 2012, 11:40AM ]
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Stripes
Mon Apr 09 2012, 11:39AM
stripes
Registered Member #204
Joined: Thu Sep 01 2011, 10:33AM
Posts: 54
I have to agree with Crimson. For an advertising campaign to be truly successful you basically need an entire staff to do market research, target demographics, slogans, graphic design, video, editing, printing and the works. When trying to market a product nationwide it might as well be impossible to do on your own.

I would look into a marketing firm that offers a free or an inexpensive consult so see what mediums would be viable and what kind of return you can expect to get for your investment. They have access to a lot of the numbers it would take an ungodly number of trained man-hours to get on your own. Get several opinions, it may work, it may be too expensive to pursue but I think it would do good to at least look into it.

Knowing where my membership fees are going and what franchise fees would be going for would be nice, but you can't really expect that from a private company. Unless you were seriously looking to invest in something I ran I wouldn't show you my books.
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-CRIMSON
Mon Apr 09 2012, 11:42AM
-CRIMSON
Registered Member #18
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 03:49AM
Posts: 207
i have absolutely no clue how to make a commercial but i bet if someone made one that made nero look cool and edgy and fun. like a water slide park. people would show up by the thousands.


like this one.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vpeLlbe2OoI
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Stripes
Mon Apr 09 2012, 12:07PM
stripes
Registered Member #204
Joined: Thu Sep 01 2011, 10:33AM
Posts: 54
I believe one of the largest detractors of NERO and LARPing in general is negative press, such as the infamous 'Lightning bolt! Lightning Bolt! Lightning Bolt!' YouTube video. The saying 'There's no such thing as bad press' is a total lie. To really make an impact, NERO has to show how truly epic the game can be, how fun it is and most importantly, how much it's worth the cost and how the 'bad press' is just one-off flukes and not the norm. Even better would be to turn the negative press into a postive one for NERO. "Yeah, that 'lighting bolt' video is bad, but NERO is in a different league."

National and Chapter Owners can only do so much, the customers (players) also have to be motivated and have a desire to do that as well. Every bad makeup job, every lousy costume and every whiner and cheater is going to hurt and set improving the image back.

Your customers are walking advertisements; you want to make them to look good so they make you look good so you get even more customers that give you more money, don't you? How often have we heard someone wanting to LARP but can’t afford all the stuff? How loyal would that customer be if they got some assistance with the ‘startup cost’? How many others would they tell about how awesome you are? How many would start coming to your game and repeat the whole cycle over and over? I don’t have hard numbers, but if I could get a multi-year customer for the cost of a pair of wrap pants, a basic shirt or robe and a boffer that they’d be working for anyway I’d certainly want to look into it.

Like a paintball field, what about offering 'rentals'?

Have a 'company store' that they can work for credit at the store insted of goblin points. How many new players are going to care about gob when they don't have a good costume?

Donations over time to get something, like 5 MT weapons for 4 months and get a latex sword? Think layaway, but they 'pay' you over time with stuff you need anyway instead of cash.
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Attackgypsy
Mon Apr 09 2012, 12:22PM
Registered Member #79
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 04:39AM
Posts: 95
Here's an idea...

Have the rental stuff, but the rental doesn't actually cost any money.

It costs you a 4 hour NPC shift. But don't use that term. Use something like "Rental payment service" or something like that. And just have them do crunchies, so they learn the game from both sides.
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DanComstock
Mon Apr 09 2012, 01:51PM

Registered Member #10
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 03:45AM
Posts: 266
-CRIMSON wrote ...

so basically unless nero international hires an advertising person to do it right. youll get as much FREE as free offers. which is baseline. basically someone bored or lonely enough to help out without reward.



The first rule of viral marketing:

Using the product advertises the product

People don't buy an iPod because they saw an iPod commercial. They buy it because their friend has one, and he said it was cool. The commercial is just a reminder. Every time you use your iPod in public, you're advertising.

That's a bit harder with NERO, because actual NERO gameplay happens in isolation. But there's tons of stuff we do and discuss between events that could potentially be a form of event marketing.

Viral marketing used to be called "word of mouth advertising". These days, we have all sorts of cool toys to make the word of mouth smoother. The trick is to give your customers tools to make it easier to talk about your game.

I think you should be able to log into the NERO website, and from there, there should be a number of ways to communicate about NERO. We should host blogs. We should link to blogs every time somebody writes about NERO. We should have a form for people to upload little pictures and anecdotes about the event. When you log into the site, you'll see stuff your friends have posted. It'll be simple to post it to facebook, google plus, twitter, all that social networking jazz.

I think there should be a goblin point award for submitting that stuff too. If you blogged about NERO, you should be able to submit the URL to us, and we'll credit you with a few goblin points. Not a ton, but enough to encourage you to spend some time making the game look good for others.

If you're curious about the game, just getting started, or you just want to find out "the story so far", you should be able to find an index of each chapter's events. For each event, you should be able to look at pictures, an attendance list, anecdotes from the event, and other content created by players.

Aside from the startup development cost, this would all be free. The challenge is creating these tools to make it easer to discuss events, publicize those discussions, and invite your friends.

Like I said in my last post - this should all be very smooth. Optimally, you'd log into the database, see that you level'd up, and then press POST TO FACEBOOK to brag about it to your friends.
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DanComstock
Mon Apr 09 2012, 02:03PM

Registered Member #10
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 03:45AM
Posts: 266
Stripes wrote ...

I believe one of the largest detractors of NERO and LARPing in general is negative press, such as the infamous 'Lightning bolt! Lightning Bolt! Lightning Bolt!' YouTube video.


Eh, personally, I don't think this stuff really moves the needle. More people probably found out about LARPing through the lightning bolt guy than through Monster Camp, Darkkon, or any of the other more straight-faced looks at the hobby. We do look silly, just own it.

When somebody sees the boffer weapons in my closet, and they go "lightning bolt!" I go "Yeah, I do that, it's fun as hell."

If they say, "Don't you feel silly?" I say "Why would I feel silly doing what I love?" Gaming is mainstream now! Perfectly normal people spend 1000 hours per month playing WoW. Game conventions, cosplay, and alternate reality games are the new in-thing. We're no longer the fringe of the fringe, we're the fringe of the mainstream.

As Dungeon Bastard puts it "D&D is cool again! ...for the first time."

The only thing that embarrasses me about LARP is LARPers being self conscious and trying to distance themselves from what we actually do. I hate when people apologize for us. As if we have to do this stuff in secret or the bullies will pick on us and hurt our feelings. The LARP stigma is created by LARPers.
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Stripes
Mon Apr 09 2012, 02:20PM
stripes
Registered Member #204
Joined: Thu Sep 01 2011, 10:33AM
Posts: 54
The people that ask you about that video have a major advantage over those who see clips like that and don't know anyone who LARPs. They have you to advocate the hobby. Like you mentioned earlier and even in my own personal case word-of-mouth is the most powerful advertising at any business' disposal.

I also dislike the apologists, especially since there are times I have to go even further advocating the game. Since I play a Sarr I have to field the 'Are you a Furry?' questions as well as the standard LARP questions. Still, trying to open up new markets and promoting NERO out of the word-of-mouth circles can have the challenge over overcoming the stereotype without anyone handy to advocate to them by word-of-mouth.

Myself, I've told people that NERO is a vacation from yourself. You can take the most elaborate vacations and world-hopping trips, but there's one thing that won't change, You. NERO can give you that vacation from yourself that the most expensive trips can't do.
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HMTaylor
Mon Apr 09 2012, 02:25PM
HMTaylor
Registered Member #22
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 03:51AM
Posts: 207
Another idea: Carry business cards with you wherever you go to promote your local chapters. Most business card companies have special / free offers for 500 cards. Then anytime anyone asks you a question about your hobby, or why you are buying that odd fabric, what you are making, etc. give them a card and tell them about it.

I'd also like to see some Facebook contests along the lines of the "like and share to win" that I am seeing from small businesses. It has a noticeable effect and promotes turning Nero Viral.
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