Thursday, November 17, 2011
Attracting and Retaining Adults in Second Life: Article by Ginette Pinazzo
by Ginette Pinazzo
This is a companion piece to the article: 'MARKETING ADULT SL: Getting Past The Sex' which was presented earlier this year and hopefully has already opened up new avenues of exposure (such as the Destination Guide) to residents of SL who create, seek and promote the Adult side of SL. This piece is partly an elaboration and continuation of that topic.
ATTRACTION AND RETENTION
The oft-stated goals of many SL initiatives are those of resident attraction and retention. Undeniably there are countless ways to work towards these goals, and it helps to define the audience when reaching for their attention.
DEFINING THE AUDIENCE
If one considers 'adults' to only be sex-seeking or sex-starved individuals, one may have chosen a lucrative market though it could be one fraught with serious marketing challenges. If one considers 'adults' to be those identified by their actual age (and presumably maturity level), one has chosen a large very influential market that can comfortably be addressed in mainstream fashion. By opening the definition to include all adults (regardless of hobbies or predilections) the possibilities of marketing are as numerous as they are for any other product or service aimed at the non-children's or non-family market. Limiting to the sexual aspects of adulthood needlessly restricts the audience if a global effort is to be made to attract (and retain) adults.
Note: this does not mean that niche marketing for sexual topics is poor thinking. On the contrary, it is essential and can compliment any wider marketing efforts.
The definition of 'adult' can relate to the likelihood of retention. If all efforts are made to attract sexual-interests only, retention may be limited to those who stay long enough to have urges satisfied. In essence, SL would serve as temporary interest for those who may be passing through or going through a phase. This does not lend itself to more long-term retention. (How long we want people to stay? If the answer is 'many years', is sexual experience enough of a incentive on its own to promote that?)
By contrast, if efforts are made to attract adults for sophisticated, mature, and highly developed interests (which certainly may or may not include sexual content, but can also include Business, Arts, Education, etc), then you can promote something far more lucrative: the retention of Content Creators. (certainly you can attract sexually-themed Content Creators, but we are talking about broader definition of 'adult' now)
We all love shopping. We pass into the mall or browse the marketplace and pick up items. We are consumers. Many are service consumers, who happen to enjoy consuming the services of sexual providers! My argument is that the attraction of consumers is not nearly enough to lead to retention. When I visit the mall, no matter how nice it is, I may never return and I certainly won't want to live in the mall. It is hard to retain a consumer with the level of investment we may want to see occur in SL.
The secret to retention in SL is simple: attract Content Creators. These are the people very likely to open shops, buy land, invest heavily in the virtual world. These are the people who will help grow and develop any aspect of SL, including Adult SL.
BLENDING THESE IDEAS
The twin concepts stated above have often been blended in the projects proposed and managed by Zindra Expo group. A broader (and more marketable) definition of 'adult' blended with an emphasis on Content Creator attraction. This combination can attract the most (broad definition) and retain the most (deeper investment)
This Article LIVES HERE