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Too Many Events and Sales


Prokofy Neva
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I just went to two major events that are usually very high quality but they were decidedly sub-standard and really underwhelming, even when "new" things were put out that looked different than "old" things -- that in too many cases were just recycled maybe with a different colour. I feel sorry for the merchants because they likely don't sell as much -- at least not to me, and I make a lot of purchases for rentals.

There are now so many events that unless you spend all 3 weekend days shopping, as fun as that may seem, you can't get to all of them. I don't know what some of these event hosts are thinking adding more in this very crowded market. The events are absolutely empty in some cases. You can now get to some events that previously, you'd need to wait 3 days even to get on a cam sim. This is a world with 30,000 concurrency. Not 100,000. Not 60,000. But 30,000. Plan accordingly.

A major blog that gains revenue from ads even competes against its own ad customers and its event customers by making its *own* sale sim. Come on guys, it's enough.

Except...this is all a sign of stress from the RL and SL economies.

So in Ireland in the old days, so family lore has it, and even sometimes today, families have lots of children. More than they can afford. Why? Because some will die in infancy. Some will be "given" to the priesthood or nunnery. Some will become alcoholics or not find jobs. So if you want the family to go on supporting its looming or its peat industry, or perhaps in modern times, its bar and restaurant business or insurance business, you need to have more children so they can work in the family business. Often poor people seemingly have "too many children" because they live in places of war, famine, economic collapse and its a natural instinct to try to compensate for all the deaths and destruction.

So, too, in SL there are just way too many sales, gatchas, and events now because sales are down, for lots of reasons. COVID may make people stay indoors, but it also loses them jobs.

It's the end of the year so we feel it more but I really wish some of my favourite creators would retreat for 2 months and make a nice, full set for $1500 which I will pay, with flair and innovation, then a gatcha full of crappy stuff which I won't even play, or 10 events with 10 balloon sets and candles in cages, those standard fall-backs by overstretched makers. You know? 

How to get off the gerbil cage wheel? They can't. During that month of rejuvenation they will have no income as in the flood of the new, few people want to go back to a store and buy something old. I was astounded the other day when a very good creator told me she couldn't re-send me a couch she made 2 years ago I had lost from inventory because she simply deleted it from inventory. It was one of a zillion things. Who remembers an old couch? Why save it? I liked it, but everybody else wants "the new".

My boots fell off in a teleport and I couldn't find them in inventory. Guess I forgot to save the outfit AND the boots got lost and can't be found under "boots" or "shoes". Nor do they show up on "My Accounts" under "boots" because probably they are called something else. Yes, I could page through hundreds of $50 and $60 purchases from sales and maybe find that  which seems a waste of time. Get the next $50 boots, Prokofy.  But guess what, I did page back 3 weeks on price searches, only to realize that 2 weeks ago, I bought something for $50 *I don't even remember at all*.  And which I deleted because I'm never going to decorate it, it's clutter. Scary.

So sure, any individual can drop out of the sales race and I do quite often as a shopper and a very small-time merchant -- because here's the thing: sales repeat their items many many times. It's now gotten to the point that even if I spend $25 on Tuesday, I check my inventory to make sure I didn't already buy that thing last year. Often I have. Few merchants have the setting on vendors that bounce back a payment if you bought a thing already. 

I note that one merchant, Apple Fall, simply ended his gatchas. Basta. They are gone. He told me he will not be making any more. That's it. No more frenzied pulling for sets with milk jugs and couches with throws on them because...he will make new ones that are better. Makes sense, although it saddens me. Yes, you can find some things on the MP if they are gatchas, but not very old copyable items. Creators often hate old things they made if they view them as "not as good" as what things are now with mesh or BOM or what-have-you. That doesn't matter to me. A good sculpty item is good regardless. Apple also seems frugal in his event participation. He gets people into the store with his Monday cash giveaways and his own personal 25% sales instead of a Tuesday or Friday sale. He probably makes more money that way. Why cheapen your wares? He probably pays less in cash giveaways than he would if he bought into 2 or 3 more events to hustle his wares. Stores are good. Stores are nice. They are better than the MP. They are not laggy. Stores are *good* I say. Make them, put things in them, put them on sale as you wish -- *I will go to them*. Meanwhile, you lost my event purchase -- too laggy even to get a vendor to work; simply won't sell when attempted from a cam sim; too sub-standard to bother with.

Occasionally I suffer a great shock. I drop into a store because they have put something in a Saturday Sale -- and haven't in a long time. And there is a section of "NEW RELEASES". Things they made that are new, nice, not in gatchas, not expensive, and not in events. HOW CAN THAT BE????  They are selling things in their store (gasp!), not in a laggy event or out of a gatcha, and for a reasonable price. Even entire sets of things. And their fans who are in their group know this, but I don't, because I'm out of groups. I will pay $200 to be in a group and put other groups on an alt that makes nice new things in sets for reasonable prices IN THEIR OWN STORE. How nice!

I think one thing that would help is if the forums had a section for new releases divided into clothes, vehicles, housewares, avatars, etc. The Lindens feel like Classifieds should solve that. It doesn't. Not when search is as bad as it is and classifieds goes only to the highest bidders. I think it would help some people surface better who deserve to serve without spending $10000 on a classified. Forums ads are not overwhelmed. Not everyone bothers. I rarely put ads there -- it's work. 

 

Edited by Prokofy Neva
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I thought September and October were really good months for events. A lot of the quarterlies came out in those months and the creators really cranked out a lot of good products. I personally really enjoyed NeoJapan, Necrotize and Cyber Fair. I think expecting that type of level every month at the monthlies is a bit of stretch unless you want your favorite creators to stress out, get drained and quit. I like the monthlies for checking in on my handful of favorite's new releases and finding other vendors to add to that list. I treat the quarterlies more like Christmas for me.

Edited by Ultimo Constantineau
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I really. like how Apple does things.

I can understand how things get overwhelming.   I am a hobbyist, and do one event a month now and also left the gacha events as it was brutal to make so many things (and the day after they would be replicated anyway, so cost/effort was a major consideration). Recently I have struggled myself to come up with "new" things.  So can understand how shoppers may also get jaded with similar products/outputs by a creator.    Weirdly this week I got inspired so made a new thing for the Saturday Sale which was fun to do.  It is nice sometimes as they have a flexible rule you don't have to do each week - I love shopping myself too on the new items that come up.

I have found people who do this professionally do really well with focusing on their own products at their own sims. 

 

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No doubt about it.  With how frequent clothing events in particular are, the creators don't seem to have time for creativity.

Interrupt me if you've not seen these at a recent event near you: jeans shorts, microskirts, waist-high jeans, bodysuit (sometimes with gaps!), crop top with long sleeves, very generic heels with an open top... and so on.

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I'm happy there's seraphim site at least. Saves so much time on not going to certain events where there's literally not a single item I would be interested in. It has a downside, though. If event is not listen there, then unless one of my favorite creators put something there, I usually have no idea it's even going on, 'cause I really have no time to keep up with all those shopping groups to keep myself updated.

But yeah, I certainly agree, there's far too many events these days. Less gacha ones at least, which is good. And when some montly ones overlap with quaterly and/or anual/semi-anual ones, then it's a nightmare to keep up.

In a way it does makes sense, though. Big names like AF from above examples can and do just fine with mainstore releases and occasional event/weekend sales. They have their own fanbase and customers, large groups to pass information about new releases through and people blog their stuff all the time.

While lesser known stores really have no good way to present their creations to potential new customers. Make something and just put it on MP? It'll quickly get pushed from the 1st few pages with those countless gachas, FP template retextures and other rubbish. Silently release in own in-world store and put a notice in own group, while their group has maybe 400-1000 people at best (and how many are inactive is another question)? Flickr, fb, instagram post? Same issue as with in-world group - not enough following. And their release might just go unnoticed.

So the events seems like the most logical choice for that, people will check it for some of the popular creators' releases and might see/try/buy something from new creators too. And if they'll like what they got, then they might join the group, follow on flickr and check next release by themselves already.

And with such demand for events there always will be new ones, and some of them are not needed really. Why release your item at "event-that-no-one-knows-about" and not at one of the popular ones? So those not needed events get flooded with low quality stuff, partially because of way lower entry fee.

Creativity and pumping up releases for so many events is whole different story. I'd guess it's because some creators don't want to lose the "regular" spot at some events, but yeah, there's only so many jeans that I need.

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I am sick of events! Same ole, same ole, month after month. Once in a blue moon, I'll find something that is not like the others and IF it has the Maitreya Petite in it, I'll demo it and IF I love it, I buy it! But yes, Seraphim is awesome for checking if anything is new and unique.

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I don't know if there are more events now because "sales are down" - I had suspected that there is an increase in the number of events due to 1) people being stuck at home due to COVID-19 and 2) the increased ability to showcase these events on social media, and with sites like Seraphim, and vloggers on youTube. Like a bunch of people have had the idea this year of starting shopping events, or creating additional shopping events.

I was on SL for several years, then off for a few years, and then back on in the last two or three years. Some events that were there in the past still existed when I came back - like Collabor88, Fameshed, Cosmopolitan, and the Arcade. Others, even some that were really popular at the time, were long gone. There's a life cycle to these things - people have real-life issues and have to drop an event they are responsible for, some have participating merchants drop out and are unable to replace them with merchants of equal or better quality. You can tell that a reoccurring event is on shaky ground when 1) they have lots of empty booths and/or 2) have a high percentage of poor-quality or low-skill-level vendors where even their item images are awful. There are some events - that I won't name because I don't want to insult people - that I'm pretty sure are on shaky ground at this point.

As to Seraphim opening up its own region with vendor stores and their own ongoing event, I'm not surprised that the folks behind Seraphim are taking advantage of their current popularity by doing this.  It's a business opportunity for them. There are other shopping regions that are aligned with big events, like the one Cosmopolitan is on.Seraphim's region might have even been somewhat modeled on that idea, since they have both the big event and a weekly event that includes an item at participating stores in the region.

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1 hour ago, Trinity1776 said:

I don't know if there are more events now because "sales are down" - I had suspected that there is an increase in the number of events due to 1) people being stuck at home due to COVID-19 and 2) the increased ability to showcase these events on social media, and with sites like Seraphim, and vloggers on youTube. Like a bunch of people have had the idea this year of starting shopping events, or creating additional shopping events.

I was on SL for several years, then off for a few years, and then back on in the last two or three years. Some events that were there in the past still existed when I came back - like Collabor88, Fameshed, Cosmopolitan, and the Arcade. Others, even some that were really popular at the time, were long gone. There's a life cycle to these things - people have real-life issues and have to drop an event they are responsible for, some have participating merchants drop out and are unable to replace them with merchants of equal or better quality. You can tell that a reoccurring event is on shaky ground when 1) they have lots of empty booths and/or 2) have a high percentage of poor-quality or low-skill-level vendors where even their item images are awful. There are some events - that I won't name because I don't want to insult people - that I'm pretty sure are on shaky ground at this point.

As to Seraphim opening up its own region with vendor stores and their own ongoing event, I'm not surprised that the folks behind Seraphim are taking advantage of their current popularity by doing this.  It's a business opportunity for them. There are other shopping regions that are aligned with big events, like the one Cosmopolitan is on.Seraphim's region might have even been somewhat modeled on that idea, since they have both the big event and a weekly event that includes an item at participating stores in the region.

Sales have generally been up since February 2020 based on merchant surveys.   Albeit it does depend on the merchant of course.   

I do wonder what is the alternative to events.  There have been so many things.  Hud based grid hops, sales at mainstore events, grouped events (like Fameshed etc), Gacha etc and variations on the themes through to doing main store releases solo - I did one a while back for a certain house and we had people camping out to buy it - it reminded me of SL 2006 all over again - it showed me it is possible.   However I am a hobbyist these days so tinker for fun only.   The main store success does take a lot of time to achieve but as people like AF, Blueberry show - it can be done with hard work and talent and you have to combine that with good marketing skills.

It takes a lot of work for a creator to grow a following - we outpace some of the big names on things like social media some times (purely as I have a person who does that who is an ace at all things with marketing) but for the new creator it is beyond overwhelming to scale towards that.   I wish Linden Lab would do more things like the Shop N Hop but when they can bring focus on New Talent Showcase - e.g. creators less than 24 months old in world (not alts).  Strawberry Linden has always done an amazing job at showcasing content, let's hope we see more from her in those areas in the future.  

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It has gotten beyond ridiculous, IMO....another pet peeve, there is a designer who used to do such cute things, now, every event are signs.  Signs, signs, signs and nothing else :( There are also a few great designers who used to do houses, or wonderful home interiors, and they have fallen back on food :( I get that the food stuff is the fad now, and I'm sure it's much easier to make, and they probably make a ton of L's from it, but there are those of us who don't do the "food" thing, and miss all the other things.  I've stopped supporting those creators.  It's sad to see, but hoping one day, the cycle will come around to the way it was before.

ETA:  Not you, Charlotte...still love your builds :)

Edited by Kylie Jaxxon
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On 11/20/2020 at 7:14 AM, Kylie Jaxxon said:

It has gotten beyond ridiculous, IMO....another pet peeve, there is a designer who used to do such cute things, now, every event are signs.  Signs, signs, signs and nothing else :( There are also a few great designers who used to do houses, or wonderful home interiors, and they have fallen back on food :( I get that the food stuff is the fad now, and I'm sure it's much easier to make, and they probably make a ton of L's from it, but there are those of us who don't do the "food" thing, and miss all the other things.  I've stopped supporting those creators.  It's sad to see, but hoping one day, the cycle will come around to the way it was before.

ETA:  Not you, Charlotte...still love your builds :)

Thank you, that's really kind to say!  

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On 11/20/2020 at 12:11 PM, Trinity1776 said:

 Know exactly which designer you are referring to, Kylie...and I've been wondering why they. have done this as well.

One reason could be is LL now do houses with their premium accounts / the neighborhoods etc.   I wonder if some creators focus on different areas due to that?   

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2 hours ago, animats said:

I'd like to see an "Perfect Fit" event. Fitmesh clothing that doesn't require an alpha. You just wear it on the designated brand of body and it Just Works. The body never goes through the clothing. Even if you move and or adjust the body sliders.

Idk see big issue with fits. I mean if its something meant to be tight sure but a perfect fitted jacket for instance isn't so great since you wont be able to wear anything under it or mix it with anything else that didn't originally come with it. So basically you're stuck with whatever look is on the advertisement instead of being able to personalize an outfit.

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On 11/20/2020 at 2:32 AM, Charlotte Bartlett said:

I do wonder what is the alternative to events.  There have been so many things.  Hud based grid hops, sales at mainstore events, grouped events (like Fameshed etc), Gacha etc and variations on the themes through to doing main store releases solo [...]

How about just spreading things out instead of having everything on Fri/Sat/Sun? Maybe have some Tue/Wed/Thu events where you've less to compete with. Maybe add a day or two to the duration to make up for the slightly reduced amount of people who can't get on during the weekdays. We see similar issues in real world markets, where new product releases seem to get concentrated around the holidays. Makes sense on an individual level, but you do risk much higher losses when everybody is releasing "their baby" for the holidays, because the money pool from the consumers doesn't grow proportionally.

3 hours ago, animats said:

I'd like to see an "Perfect Fit" event. Fitmesh clothing that doesn't require an alpha. You just wear it on the designated brand of body and it Just Works. The body never goes through the clothing. Even if you move and or adjust the body sliders.

I don't think it's mathematically possible to have two surfaces of different volume deform such that they never intersect.

Or to give a more practical example, try creating a knee joint, add a pant-leg around it, then try your darnest to rig it so that you can bend the knee all the way back without the pant-leg clipping through.

Edited by Wulfie Reanimator
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