Last week as I was heading off to lunch one of the people I follow on Twitter posted a question. Kind of a poll. A couple hours later he posted another tweet bemoaning how he doesn't like Twitter because he asks a question and none of his 874 followers answered.
At first this may seem harsh. 874 followers and not a single reply?
Here's the thing. The guy built up a follow-list of about 2000 people. About 40% (including me) were silly enough to follow him back. (I'm allowing that 4% might be actual friends/acquaintances/people who care.) He then uses Twitter as a glorified ad platform. Nothing about him or anything like that. Just random tweets pimping his various products and projects.
So yeah. When you put out a general tweet (of the self-fellating how-much-time-will-you-spend-playing-with-my-product variety) to a list of people who don't have any personal investment because they don't know the first thing about you, you're probably not going to get a whole lot of response. Especially when the vast majority of those people are too nice to be honest and tweet back "zero."
So by now you're saying to yourself, "Self, that's an interesting story. Why is San sharing it in a WoW blog, though?"
Glad you asked.
WoW is a lot like Twitter. At its very core--at the foundation--it's a social tool. Unlike Twitter, it has a lot of things to do while you're being social and a very pretty interface with which to do those things. And yes, you can ignore the social component of the game and still get those other things out of it, but you're not likely to keep your wallet open playing as long as the player that does involve themselves in the social aspects.
Right now in our guild we're having raid attendance problems. We haven't been able to come close to fielding a full 25-man team since we cleared ToC 25 a little over a month ago (and we even had one substitute that night).
Some of this is expected. It's the end of an expansion cycle. These kind of drops happened at the end of Vanilla (I'm told) and BC. Plus the summer is fast approaching. Students are in that last rush for the school year. And with Daylight Savings in full swing, people are out more doing things.
Some of it, though...I can't help wondering if it's partially the fault of the officers. I think we've fallen into the same mindset as Twitter-guy. We advertise our guild and bring in members, then throw out raid invites and assume that's enough incentive for people to show up on time (or at all), ready to go, and run with us. We're not doing a very good job of getting them personally invested first.
Even though I'm typing "we," I mean "I." I speak for myself, first and foremost. My intention is not to state this as fact for all of my fellow officers; just my own actions and general overall perceptions. A lot of them read this blog, though, so I know they'll see this and I doubt too many of them will disagree.
We haven't been taking the time to make our new recruits feel like they're an actual part of the guild. We toss out an ginvite when we're asked for one, say "Welcome" in gchat and then...kinda leave it at that.
It's only when someone's proven themselves and earned a slot on the progression team (as either a primary or a backup), that we start to go out of our way to include that person. We normally use our 25-man runs to get an idea as to whether or not we should give someone a chance on a progression team. So if we're not filling the big runs, our smaller ones become stagnant as well (which has also been happening).
We say we're about having fun first and raiding second, but we've been acting exactly the opposite. In fact, we've been acting is if raiding is the fun and if you're not in on that, well... *shrug*
Granted, this is kinda true at the moment for me. Raiding and mount farming are about the only things holding my interest at this point. But that's kind of besides the point.
I think we (again, by which I mean "I," specifically) need to start remembering that even though life is busy and game time is short, we can't expect to be able to just log in, put our head down, and tunnel-vision through whatever we wanted to accomplish that night. If we want to do that, we need to step down as officers. Otherwise we need to go out of our way to be more open, more friendly, and more social to all the guild members. Newly invited and vets. The best and the rest, alike. We need to make other guild members feel like we care about them, that they're an important part of our guild, and that we want them there. Only when they have that sense of personal investment are they going to start responding readily to our raid invites.
At the very least, it couldn't hurt.
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