25 Sep

Forget Followers, You Want Fans!

Fan Schlock Mercenary quote

Fan Schlock Mercenary quoteI like Schlock Mercenary. I read the comic every day. I buy pretty much every Schlock merchandise that comes along. That doesn’t make me a fan.

What makes me a fan is that whenever someone asks about comics, I mention Schlock Mercenary. When I talk to someone about idle time, or surfing the web, or entertainment, I mention Schlock Mercenary. Whenever people talk about SF, or humor or anthropomorphic piles of poop wielding plasma cannons, I mention Schlock Mercenary.

The difference between a fan and a follower is not how much money or time they spend on your stuff. The difference is that a fan will actively try to broaden your fan base. Fans engage non-followers in order to make them followers.

And that makes fans the most valuable resource you could have. These are the people who will work in your booth for the honor of wearing a Munchkin t-shirt. These are the people who will repeatedly post links to your stuff in their Facebook accounts. These are the people you want on your side.

So how do you get fans? Read More

03 Jan

What Great Customer Service actually means

Euphoria: Building a Better Dystopia game box detailOn New Year’s Eve I picked up my deluxe KS copy of Euphoria: Build a Better Dystopia Amazon . I was quite taken with the stark cover. But when I picked up the box I realized that it was torn. Amazon had damaged my game!.

Nope. It was sleeved and the sleeve was designed as a vintage book, with a torn cover.

It wasn’t necessary. Steimeier and co. didn’t need to create a sleeve, didn’t need to add the extra torn imagery to it. It would have been fine as just a sleeve. But they did add it, and that made me feel like they’d gone that extra mile for me.

I’ve encountered the same from Howard Tayler’s Schlockiverse customer service (there’s a game here, but it’s mostly a webcomic: www.schlockmercenary.com.) They’ve gone beyond any reasonable demands in order to exceed customer expectations.

Schlock Mercenary PostcardsEach year they send out a post card to their customers. It’s a small thing, just a thank you for shopping that drops into the mailbox around Christmas. No coupons, no entreaties to buy more, no information about future products. Just a clean, friendly thank you note.

And it costs them to send it out. I’d wager that the one I get here in Sweden costs up to $2 or maybe even more to ship to me.

But they do it. And it makes me feel that I’m getting more that I requested, more that I could ask for. And that makes me even more convinced that I want to support Schlock, just like I want to support Steigmeier. Because I know that I’ll be getting all I wanted and more.

Oh, and it doesn’t hurt that when the USPS missplaced my order Tayler corp (yeah, that’s what they call their husband, wife and friends team), they sent me a replacement order and added to it, with original art, to say “sorry” for something that wasn’t their fault.

That’s more than customer service. That’s character.