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Request For Input On Future Plans For Fpn


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#1 wimg

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 13:19

Dearest Members of the little Fountain Pen Nut house on the digital prairie,

 

 

Considering the (lack of) speed and performance of our board of late, we are looking at increasing funding to be able to afford better hosting packages.

 

In Community Feedback we have therefore created a topic requesting input on possible paths to follow, here:

Request for input on advertising on FPN

 

We would really appreciate it if you could list any ideas you may have for such an endeavour.

 

Thank you very much in advance!

 

Warmest regards, Wim

On behalf of 
The FPN Admin Team

 


the Mad Dutchman
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#2 njagota

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 13:48

As a very occasional user, I would be glad to donate small funds on a monthly basis as a membership due in exchange for access to better things such as search in the classifieds. That seems to have been eliminated upon my return after 4 months absence. I would also welcome advertising by manufacturers of pens, and similar collectibles such as shaving and tobacciana even though I don't smoke.

 

Regards, Nimesh



#3 wimg

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 18:47

Thank you kindly, Nimesh. 

 

In the donation options, the anonymous ones, there is the possibility to donate yearly, if that is an option. We couldn't list all the possibilities, as it is either/or with PayPal.

 

The search facilities are still available in Classifieds, just that they have been repositioned with the software upgrade, slightly higher up to the right. We also  added Google Search for FPN a few days ago, which is the first option showing. Clicking on the Google search field will provide a dropdown list, and Classifieds is one of the options presented.

 

HTH, warm regards, Wim 


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#4 Calamus plasticus

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 19:08

Well, perhaps the major brands could advertise in the dedicated forum, that is, MB in the MB forum, Sheaffer in the Sheaffer forum and so on, acting like sponsors. After all, these forums are a great source of bussiness for them.
But all controlled by the admins, please, no automatic advertising (no wallets and cufflinks with the white star just bucause we are in the MB forum).

#5 wimg

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 19:24

Well, perhaps the major brands could advertise in the dedicated forum, that is, MB in the MB forum, Sheaffer in the Sheaffer forum and so on, acting like sponsors. After all, these forums are a great source of bussiness for them.
But all controlled by the admins, please, no automatic advertising (no wallets and cufflinks with the white star just bucause we are in the MB forum).

That would be the general idea anyway - straight adverts, no automatci ones, controlled and approved by us first, as indicated in the topic referred to above. 

 

We want to stay in control :D.

Warm regards, Wim


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#6 speculator

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 22:20

It looks as though running a search (for a particular make, for example) cannot be done anymore on the FPN Classified page. Can that be changed?



#7 wimg

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 21:02

That should work, but you have to use the standard search, not the Google one, and select Classifieds from the dropdown list where it says Google now.

 

BTW, this really is a question for the Members Helping Members Forum.

 

HTH, warm regards, Wim


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#8 Juicyjones

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 05:34

I don't mind at all as long as we can keep the ads related to pens and ink. Subscription options to see the site ad-free would be good as well.


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#9 jptech

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 13:13

go loud.

 

Fountain pens are luxury items and we are sitting on perhaps the largest group of that luxury demographic.

 

Breitling

Mercedes Benz

Mont Blanc

Louis Vuitton

Ferretti Yachts

 

Of course, I'll probably never be able to afford a thing on that list, but the ad money will be brilliant.



#10 Newjelan

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 08:13

I don't mind at all as long as we can keep the ads related to pens and ink. Subscription options to see the site ad-free would be good as well.


Agree! I'm happy for pen, ink & paper ads but NO shaving or tobacco etc. Happy to contribute monthly/annually as well and the ads can stay as long as they are subtle.

#11 Brian C

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 15:54

BRING ON THE ADDS!



#12 wimg

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 22:06

BRING ON THE ADDS!

<ROFL>

 

Warm regards, Wim


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#13 PatientType

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 22:50

FPN might be successful in issuing a sponsored credit card.  The card could be made using an uploaded image of one or more of the member's own fountain pens or, alternatively, one of several images donated by one of the masterful photographers that post such great pictures in their reviews and posts.

I think that the way those can work is that the sponsoring organization gets a small percentage and, sometimes the card holder does as well, as a rebate on every purchase made using sponsored cards.  So, FPN member can contribute without buying something posted for sale on FPN and without digging into their bank account. 

I'll bet that some of the fountain pen companies would also give a 5% or 10% discount on purchases made by people using a FPN credit card to buy pens or ink.  That as well as loyalty to FPN would make the card attractive to members.


Edited by PatientType, 28 September 2013 - 22:55.


#14 RMN

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 23:01

I think that might work if FPN was just a national organisation, but with Members scattered all over the world I think this won't work.

 

And I always hear: credit costs money.

Shopowners accept credit cards because it makes online sales possible, but not all will be willing to offer discounts when using CC.

 

D.ick


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#15 N2theBreach

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Posted 29 September 2013 - 01:44

Clothing sales? T-shirts, polo shirts, tote bags,whatever. They could have the FPN logo, or not. I'd be happy with discreet line drawings of FPs, or FPs drawing line drawings, and so forth. We have enough artists here who may be willing to help.

#16 RMN

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Posted 29 September 2013 - 03:22

Clothing sales? T-shirts, polo shirts, tote bags,whatever. They could have the FPN logo, or not. I'd be happy with discreet line drawings of FPs, or FPs drawing line drawings, and so forth. We have enough artists here who may be willing to help.

If you would care to look on top of the page, click the logo for Cafepress, and you'll see it already exists. I doubt it is bringing much revenues....

 

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#17 raging.dragon

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Posted 30 September 2013 - 02:33

I don't mind ads, and ads from reputable brands and dealers can even be useful, so long as:

  • They don't use sound (interupts music I'm listening to, annoys anybody else in the room).
  • No popups. Especially mouse over keyword popups like Konterra.

Flash and scripts in ads are also annoying and have a slew of privacy concerns. Many people block these so ads using them will be less effective.



#18 wimg

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 10:56

As mentioned in the topic linked to in the first post, this link:

http://www.fountainp...on-advertising/

 

We will not do pop-ups, pop-unders, etc., just plain image ads with a link to the advertiser's site. We want to keep maximum control over what is displayed and advertised :).

 

As to Café Press etc.: that currently provides us with an income of roughly $10 per month, and diminishing :). Considering the effort that went into setting it up, all I can say is, well, it is available as an option to our members :D.

 

Warm regards, Wim


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#19 OcalaFlGuy

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 18:43

There is likely no option any tastier the proverbial free lunch that wasn't supposed to exist in the first place. 

 

It's not easy sometimes to find out that there's now a charge for something you've gotten for free for an extended period of time.

 

Tough.

 

Life's not fair.

 

I am reluctantly resigned to the fact that the changing net means less completely free content. I have the least of any issues with the way FPN has decided to handle it (fixed pen related ads).  Completely free content isn't so (usually) for the contributor. I wrote a monthly article for gratus in an on-line motorcycle E-zine for a couple years. "For the fun of it" only goes so far and after awhile was bumpkus as any protection to my Editor come deadline time.  ;) 

 

Thank's to Wim and crew for at least trying to put a cherry Lifesaver in the spoon full of Pepto-Bismal.

 

Bruce in Ocala,  Fl

 

 

 

 

 



#20 wimg

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 00:51

Thank you for your kind words, Bruce, much appreciated!

 

Warmest regards, Wim


the Mad Dutchman
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#21 johnmetta

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 15:39

Please, whatever you do, don't allow ads from Goulet Pens! Because, honestly, I can't afford to give them any more money!

 

/me heads over to Goulet to buy a Midori TN…

 

I hate ads. Viscerally. But since I haven't yet gotten around to donating, I'm a hypocrite. I hate hypocrites. Viscerally.

 

I'd much rather have ads and a stable FPN. Do what you gotta do team. I just thank you for being there.



#22 Drawframe

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Posted 06 October 2013 - 09:18

I think ad's relating to pens, handwriting, papers and inks are just fine. Specialist sites offer specialist suppliers an opportunity to trade their goods and services, just need to keep a tight control of the content. That's my three penneth in as they say.



#23 Sandy1

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Posted 06 October 2013 - 13:47

Hi,

I've read the posts in this Topic along the way, and have learned much. I've mulled things over a bit, so here's my tuppence worth.

I agree with Member wimg that there are choices to be made about funding FPN on an ongoing basis. I also agree that at this time Option 1, charging a mandatory blanket subscription fee, is not desirable. So we look to advertising as Option 2.

Mute static advertisements as described by wimg are fine: text, image & link/s. Advertisements should not hinder navigation, drain system/bandwidth resources nor interfere with display of content.

As to the advertisements, I reckon that advertising is advertising, whether it be from an entrepreneur or a multinational, an ink maker or an airline. I see no particular reason for limiting advertisers to those directly relevant to FPN. I propose that any which meet the FPN criteria of 'politeness & civility' should be considered. I have confidence that the FPN Admin Team would set rates according to various criteria. ;)

 
That said, I firmly believe that Members should be subjected to less advertising than Guests. In effect, that would address the expense:performance:value balance of this site. Guests incur expense and slow performance to extract value from content, yet neither contribute nor participate, so would be of value as fodder targets of wide-audience advertisers. Members would see only a smaller number of site-specific advertisements sprinkled in the margins.

Placing advertisements only in a relevant Forum is a grand idea which takes into account display space limitations. However, as I would be disinclined to browse the entire site to ensure I hadn't overlooked something of interest, having the facility to view all advertisements in one fell swoop would be appreciated.

Also, advertisers must not have access to Member's activity logs or personal information not volunteered by the Member in their Profile.

In addition, I suggest that Guests be charged a very modest sliding rate fee for purchasing items in the Classifieds.

While somewhat off-topic, for reasons of transparency I would ask those  Members who are not at arms length to an advertiser or business relevant to this site include such information as part of their commercial Member Profile, and those be available to Guests and Members.

Bye,
S1

 


Edited by Sandy1, 06 October 2013 - 22:59.

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#24 sisiay

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Posted 08 October 2013 - 01:59

Speaking as a reasonably new, non-paying member, I feel like ads for relevant businesses (pens/pen shows/ink/paper/cases etc) wouldn't be too much of an imposition. I know many a post frequently sends me scattering to another tab searching for a vendor of some pen or ink I've just read (or re-read or re-re-read) about.

 

That said, I don't find myself bothered by speed or functionality issues with the site as it exists now.



#25 RLTodd

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 18:19

I would definietly support going for Advertising, as long as there are no popups.

 

I think side bar, top & bottom bar, and inline advertisements would be a very nice economic solution.

 

I think advertising is a good thing, it is just so many of the ad campaigns are so bad, end up targeting the wrong markets, and just irritate the dickens out of people.


YMMV

#26 wimg

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Posted 11 October 2013 - 04:23

We'll have ultimate control over what will be displayed, so it will in line with the target market. Inline advertisements is something we will very likely not do, however. Most of us find those very irritating, and it appears quite a few members here too ;).

 

I am pretty sure we will start in a very simple way, which from a practical POV is probably best :D.

 

Warm regards, Wim


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#27 raging.dragon

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Posted 11 October 2013 - 04:55

For sure. From a practical perspective, small, easy to rollback, steps with testing and a trial period between steps is by far the safest route.



#28 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 22:13

As a daily user you should ask pens firms which are represented here that their sales or marketing directors post here so it is easier for customers to get things solved if they don't have an adequate  representative or shop in their own country. Also ads for the best online dealers and pen sellers could complement the fpn activity quite well


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#29 Mags

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 14:11

I would be in favour of one not likely all these fund raising options:

 

1) increased advertising where anything goes;

2) pay for access and advertisement free FPN user access;

3) A downloadable app like Tapatalk for iphones where you make your one time app payment for FPN

4) Annual purchase of some FPN item which could be a pen roll or greeting cards which allow some profit for hosting after item and mailing expenses back to users.

 

5) a tightly administered and grouped set of forum boards in a paid area in essence sell pen groups, clubs some private space.


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#30 ruben50

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 22:00

I know I am fairly new to this group, but found the knowledge on this site to be such that I signed up for annual support to keep this valuable asset up and running. That being said, I do welcome some ads that align with what this forum is most interested in and about. I like Mags idea of paying for an ad free version of FPN. 

 

If taking votes, I'll vote for that now. :)

 

Rube


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