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Forum Moderators: lawman
What good is a subscription [webmasterworld.com]? What goes on in the community forums that us plebes don't see? I like your site, but I haven't seen a good reason to pay all that $$$.
You should spend some time on marketing. ;)
Honestly, I think this place has helped more small to medium web based companies to start out, stay afloat or flourish than any other institution I know of.
Aside from supporting WebmasterWorlds continued operation and expansion, subscribing to the site has tangible benefits. Members receive:
Access to the private supporters forum. It is made up of some of the best professionals in the business in a more relaxed atmosphere.
An ad free environment if we should add advertising.
25% off the cover price at all WebmasterWorld hosted conferences.
there were plenty of supporters both before/after it was official
i think the main thing is that if you gain something from what you read here then maybe it might be worth giving something back, even just from a selfish point of keeping the whole thing going ...
when i found this place my sites began to kick off, not because i discovered the elixir vitae here, but because
1) i learned to work at my sites from a more informed viewpoint
2) i found inspiration from like minded people
it should be based on what you will or have gained by reading and digesting and posting on both sides of the wall
There are single threads on the public forum whose information will produce more than $150 if properly followed. And there's equal value on what goes on behind the curtain in a less noisy forum. Look at it as an investment in the future of your site. It's been worth it to me.
The gas here is free and has been for more than 3 years, Mat.
The subscribers place is a little more relaxed, and a little less crowded. It's a nice place to be.
If you don't feel like you can or want to subscribe than that's fine too. No need to stress out on that.
Each to his own, I guess. I'm here 'cos I want to be, not because the idea was sold to me. Because a community has to supply facilities, a community should pay for them.
I have found this community extremely well inhabited (with all kinds of people with the desire to communicate), with some of the best freely available webmaster tools around (many of them inhouse), just the kinda yard I'd like to hang around in, with a group of people who feel it is worthwhile to do things to make it more comfortable .
That's why the accolade from time to time. [webmasterworld.com](well done Brett and all of WebmasterWorld by the way ;) ).
I guess for me a good product sells itself.
Just my 10 euro cents
For every public member in WebmasterWorld there are 2 or 3 lurkers who sit, read and "copy/paste" for their own benefit without participating in the community. They take and give nothing.
Community leaches sort of speak.
We all need from time to time to bounce an idea off of others to cover a whole gamut of "cause & effect" but those leaches make the process of doing it in the open very unappealing.
In the "attic" it is all share, all give and take thus a few may be rewarded for you opening up an idea - but they help develop that to fruition.
It's very disheartening to open dialogue up in public only to find out that someone with "much more resources" beat you to it, and had nothing to do with the original process.
Pay to play! ;)
Those who are starting out may not be able to afford subscriptions.
To all who commented on the value of WW and that we should contribute to supporting the site:
That isnt in question. We all agree with that.
The point is why should anyone upgrade from a free service to paid one?
Why pay for the forum software when the freeware version meets you needs? What added features does the paid version have?
Why pay for Opera when it can downloaded for free? What additional benefits does it hold?
Any service that is offered for free has a huge amount of detail "selling" the benefits and features of the paid version of the service.
The WW subscription lacks that. I would have to agree with webdevsf - more marketing is needed.
>ad free environment - yes indeed unique for the web and a good selling point for some, but most people really aren't that bothered.
>25% Discount for PubCon - a much better example of tangiable benefit from subscribing.
>More relaxed atmosphere....eh? Thats very vague. Not a good selling point im afraid. Too ambiguous. May as well try to sell a sense of well being. ;)
Personally, I would be inclined to subscribe (when I can afford it) if i had more information available to me.
Content is King! :)
I think the main selling point just now is the mysteriousness surrounding the supporters forum which is being encouraged by exisiting susbscribers and long term members.
It could be that the aim is not to generate a huge amount of income from subscriptions, but to stem the amount of people subscribing to a sustainable level (therefore reducing forum spam, etc on the new forum).
Yes, more marketing is required. But only if WW is targetting the mass market.
Im sure Brett et all are more than capable of generating custom for the service and presumeably are happy with the levels of uptake - therefore no more marketing is required.
>You should spend some time on marketing.
Why? You're doing it for them! ;)
>>>>Courtesy of Marketing Guy<<<<<<
No marketing budgets, No hype and No b#@X%£*)
Webmasterworld fits that category, why try and sell a product, which sells itself.
Its the ONLY forum I have ever heard mentioned in meetings with people who control most of the Internet Marketing.
Why pay for Opera when it can downloaded for free? What additional benefits does it hold?
Agree totally - personally I prefer the much small private community. If everyone here in the public was also "private" there really wouldn't be a need for the public forums.
No marketing is needed... it is not meant as an enhanced revenue stream.
Paying for the privilege of belonging to the private forum isn't for everyone and that's fine! Personally, I think asking Brett to market it is kind of out there. If you can't figure out the benifit to you as a webmaster or SEO professional, you likely don't need it anyway.
As Heini said ... no need to stress out about it. The public forum is a wonderful place to be! :)
I weighed in for a washing machine in November to make life easier.
I weighed in for a computer overhaul last year to make life easier.
I see subscription here in a similar way. Who knows, if not just enough people subscribe to make ends meet.......
i prefer not to go down that road. ;)
No Google Update Thread
Fewer me-too posts
Fewer newbie-ask-the-same-questions-that's-covered-in-the-Google-Knowledge-base posts
Fewer I'm-too-lazzy-to-use-the-search posts
Better networking opportunities
Members sharing some useful personal/professional background info
Better quality recommendations on products/services
Ability to use specific urls, keywords... when needed
Closed to spiders & the occasional nosey client
No lurkers, just active posters
Best ROI I got on any investment on the web.
A wise man once said...
Ask not what WebmasterWorld can do for you, ask what you can do for WebmasterWorld - the community.
In plain english - ROI on "free" is exceptional even if you only make $10 more than you would have without "free". If you really need to ask "what's in it for me"... WebmasterWorld provided that in advance... how many of you asking this question provide the same thing to your customers - "free" products & services and only paid if you want to.... none!
The question therefore is why did you original become a member of this particular community?
A recent post by me - in private -- which sort of parallels this thread and the varying opinions of "what's in it for me".
...the 4 most brandable features that WebmasterWorld and any (all) conferences have is:
Global community joined by a common theme - achieving connectivity in both the virtual sense and in the real world.
Improvement/Advancement - information > knowledge > skill > wisdom > share > repeat >
This is a big asset - the testament of complete knowledgeless newbies going from next to nil website visitation to 2K a day, for the cost of reading, asking, and applying is no minor feat.
Internet Quality Control
A testament to Brett... but more importantly, all admins, moderators, and all members that actively participate in projecting a professional "growth" community that is opened to share ideas, concepts, observations, and trends while both teaching & learning at the same time. Constructivism at its finesh. (People learn better by doing).
It is rare to find a resource that maintains steadfast consistency, such that a vast number of web related businesss and their reps - Google, DMOZ, Euroseek, Wordtracker, Hitlinks, and so many more, are not just members but actively participating in open discussions within their fields of expertise.
All of this amazed me 8 months ago - and it only gets better by the day.
I am in the same boat and am planning to join "at some future date" ... when I can afford to. $150.00 is still a big deal to me too. Don't take it as if anyone is chiding you for not being grateful. That simply isn't the case!
As I said, the free forum is a wonderful place to be and its where we have all started out.
Don't gamble anything ... wait until you can afford it! As there is no payment plan, make your own. Put away $10.00 or $20.00 a month until you have enough saved and then sign up if you choose to. In the meantime, be happy (like me) that WebmasterWorld public forums exist ...
I NEED to be assured that what I would be getting via subscription is of added value.
Nobody is going to hand you thousands of dollars just because you join. However, the advantages are pretty easy to figure out from the above posts IMHO.
... and please don't refer to those of us on the outside looking in as plebes. I'm not a plebe!:)