What tips are there for running a sign-up?
Running a sign-up isn’t always easy. You need to dedicate a good amount of time to it to make it successful. Maybe once or twice you can get away with letting a sign-up fade into obscurity, but generally those who sign up are disappointed by prematurely-ending sign-ups, and if you do this too often be cautious of being reviled by people. Here are my tips for running a sign-up.
- 1. Think first how long it may take to run a sign-up. With this in mind, plan the number of people who can sign-up. If you will be providing screenshots of each forumite, you might want to minimise the number of members. Consider future events that might get in the way, such as examinations, coursework and holidays.
- 2. With this in mind, set a public schedule and stick to it. Not only does this stop people pestering you asking when the next update will arrive, it will help motivate you and result in you planning your time better.
- 3. Try and make it original. If you have an idea come to you at 10:00pm, perhaps sleep on it to develop it. You may want to use the ideas thread to gauge popularity and originality.
- 4. Be nice and*explicit. When posting a sign-up form, make sure everyone knows what is required to fill it in. It also helps to write some introductory paragraphs, and it helps me when writing the guide! Also, if you want users to email or PM you, make sure they know how.
- 5. Play a test game. This is really useful in finding out any errors that could arise.
- 6. Be prepared to be a little bit harsh. If you have set a sign-up limit and it is important to you that that limit is not breached, yet you have an extra person, do not be afraid to say no to their entry. If you have a user that is not posting, if it complements the updates, it may be a smart idea to drop their character from updates, perhaps reminding the user first.
- 7. If you intend to abandon the sign-up, let your users know why. It helps to get some closure, and who knows, you may even get some sympathy.
What tips are there for taking part in a sign-up?
While it seems silly to suggest tips for taking part in a sign-up, it is not uncommon for people to disregard basic etiquette when taking part in sign-ups. These are as important as tips for the running of sign-ups.
- 1. Post regularly to show your enthusiasm (but don’t spam). Also, if you will be away, inform the sign-up runner so that (s)he can plan accordingly.
- 2. Just because this is the internet doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be appreciative and courteous. If a sign-up is particularly bad, offer constructive criticism or don’t criticise at all. However, it is very easy to see past the façade of some “constructive” criticism, so even if it looks constructive, consider how it is delivered before posting. Also, when making requests, don’t be rude. While please isn’t always necessary, thank yous are generally warranted.
- 3. Provide all the information the sign-up runner wants in the sign-up form. If you don’t, (s)he may not be able to start the sign-up as planned, and could drop you from it. If you do get dropped from a sign-up, respect the sign-up runner’s decision as that decision is final.