Welcoming new members questions

Discussion in 'Managing Your Online Community' started by Michael, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. Michael

    Michael Regular Member

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    Do you as an admin welcome your new members regularly? Do you welcome a new member as soon as they post an intro or do you tend to wait till it has a few replies from members first? Do you think it is a good thing to welcome your members as an admin? Do you sometimes feel as if you sound like a broken record when doing so?
     
  2. Nick

    Nick Regular Member

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    I check in the Intros forum every once in a while and make sure to respond to any threads with 0 or just a couple of replies. It annoys me to see new users post an introduction thread and not get any responses; imagine what they think about the forum. :rolleyes:
    Yes, I do often feel like a broken record so I try to find unique things to comment on in each intro. It's a nice personal touch for the new member.

    I was reading a blog entry earlier, and it mentions a tip to greet at least three newcomers daily.
     
  3. Webmist

    Webmist Champion

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    Me too, I know how it is to post on a forum and be totally ignored. Even simple questions. I also try to think of some interesting to say. If they post links or refer to something I try to comment on it.
     
  4. Michael

    Michael Regular Member

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    Its damn hard when their intros are only a few words long lol I try to myself although the uniqueness of my intros is starting to lack especially when theres not much to say to them other than welcome to the forums have a great stay due to a short infoless intro.
     
  5. Noles

    Noles Adept

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    I usually reply to their introduction topics as soon as possible. If they provide a unique intro I'll try to bounce some questions off of them too with my reply. It does seem like I'm just saying the same thing over and over but I'm sure they appreciate it over no recognition at all.
     
  6. BananaQueen

    BananaQueen Grand Master

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    not telling anyone ;)
    i welcome all new members who post an introduction thread, and on their first post in any other section on the forum i will add a welcome onto my reply to their post if i reply to it
     
  7. MordyT

    MordyT Grand Master

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    I welcome members. It tends to repetitious....:frown:
     
  8. Vekseid

    Vekseid Regular Member

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    I've setup a system for welcoming new members, but there are times when I catch a newbie before my mentors do : )
     
  9. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Regular Member

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    I send a welcome PM to every new registrant - it's automatic and they also get a welcome email. It is not the standard welcome format. I modified it to make it more personal and fitting for my forum.

    I don't have an intro forum or section. I have rarely used them myself. I like to get to the meat and potatoes and it appears that's what most of my users do too. If they do feel they must introduce themselves, they usually do it either in the off-topic forum, or in their first post or request for support. Regardless, most members that reply have the courtesy to welcome the new member - and welcome back those who haven't posted in a while. It's a great community spirit.

    R'gards,

    Jim
     
  10. 3Phase

    3Phase Champion

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    I don't because I can't keep up with it. And either (a) it creates an expectation everyone must be greeted or it is a personal slight, or (b) they don't know who I am anyway.

    I've felt that since I don't greet all members I should greet none or few, so people don't feel slighted if not greeted. I do greet a very, very few, especially if they are obviously new to the hobby. But honestly, they don't know I'm the owner/admin.

    I've appointed 'helpers' that aren't even full staff to greet new members and keep an eye on them, offer help if they need it. There is a restricted access sub-forum where newbs can post "how do I?" questions for the first 90-days, a few of the "mentors" (greeters) respond. This was instituted when we were told that many newbies are new to forums, were confused and nervous about asking questions "in front of everyone." Most members come not because they are internet people but because they are hobby people, and a lot of them are low-tech Luddites.

    Oh yeah - there is an automated welcome PM, ostensibly from me. I think they get that it's not personal, really, very few reply. Really it gets them to click on the link to their pm's and discover there is such a thing.
     
  11. Nick

    Nick Regular Member

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    And you don't think everybody should? In my opinion, members who aren't welcomed (by anybody) are more likely to not participate in the forum or even come back.

    It just seems rude to ignore somebody who takes the time to join your forum and post an introduction thread telling about themselves. That's just my opinion though. :shrug:
     
  12. 3Phase

    3Phase Champion

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    It depends on the forum ... size, purpose, culture, etc. In many cases, actually no, I don't think the owner/admin should greet every new member. Someone should, definitely! :)

    Comparison ... a large party ... when the host/hostess greets every new arrival, this is all they do for a good part of the time. They are anchored to the door. They are not circulating, making sure enough food and drink are reaching all the guests, making sure guests already in the party are enjoying themselves.

    A step over to an internet forum ... if there are a large number of introductions posted every day, then no, I don't think posting greetings to people who have no clue who they are is the best service an admin can provide for the forum, if & when it is at the expense of what could be done to make the whole forum better for everyone. Definitely someone should be appointed to greet each one and offer to help if they need it - someone for whom that is a primary role on the forum. A professional greeter, as it were.

    If you count an automatic welcoming pm to each new member, purportedly coming from the admin, then I agree that is a good idea. Every once in awhile a newbie will answer that, and I'll engage that newb in a short exchange.

    Another thought about individual forums ... I've tried to make it a point that my forum is not built around the personality of the admin/owner. Some forums are, and that's fine. The owner/admin participates widely, everyone is aware of them and knows something about them and their opinions on the forum topic. That's not the case on all forums. On mine I want the bulk of posting members to be the personality of the forum. I try to have a more minimal presence and my topic opinions aren't so important. This is simply a personal choice. So newbs aren't missing anything much if I don't post in their Introductions thread. They don't feel they've been slighted.

    I have some secret feedback on how newbs react to the forum. The greeting has never been mentioned. What's been mentioned is that they feel intimidated by 2 things ... how to use the forum (esp. first-timers to forums,) and posting in a community where there is so much dialog going on between obviously active participants. Those are the things I'm taking extra steps to address, using forum members who will focus on this task and don't also have moderating and admin demands on their forum/online time. I have learned the volunteers just can't do it all, and neither can I, so they will focus on aspects they enjoy most.
     
  13. 50calray

    50calray Grand Master

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    My forum is still small enough that it's easy to welcome new members. This is something I actually enjoy doing and generally welcome them on their first post. Now once the sight grows I'll probably slow down but I will always keep an eye out making sure that everyone gets a welcome.
     
  14. Nick

    Nick Regular Member

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    Well I didn't mean to imply that every member should be welcomed by the administrator(s). I was saying that sometimes introductions go ignored, so I make it a point to skim the Introductions forum every couple of days, and reply to any threads that have 0 replies.

    I used to welcome every new member, but as you said, it would consume all of my time if I did that.
     
  15. Desu

    Desu Addict

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    I almost always welcome a member as soon as I see their intro.

    With my newest project, I generally give them some information into the development and going-ons of the project, so that they can see what we're working on.

    I almost always try to keep my posts between members different, though at times it becomes difficult to do.
     

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