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How many users is the "right" size for FerrariChat.com?

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by rob lay, Jan 27, 2004.

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How many users is the "right" size for FerrariChat.com?

  1. 1,000

  2. 5,000

  3. 25,000

  4. As large as it gets.

  5. 1,000

  6. 5,000

  7. 25,000

  8. As large as it gets.

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  1. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
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    Dec 1, 2000
    51,217
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    Rob Lay
    Jim's "4,000 Users" post has me thinking. We are growing like crazy and it's almost getting out of hand. We're adding 1,000 users a month! These are 99.9% new users too, because the old software only had 3,000 unique users at the switch.

    How large is too large? How to best handle and manage the growth? I already have the software and hardware planned out to be scalable. We could handle 100,000+ users from that perspective. Would you rather have a smaller board of 5,000 users only or one with 25,000 users? More forum areas? More ways to filter quality users? The thing is I think 99% of these 4,000 users are quality.
     
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  3. amenasce

    amenasce Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Oct 17, 2001
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    We need more European users.

    The site is dead in the morning....

    Rob, do you advertise in some european Ferrari Magazines ?
     
  4. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
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    No, but I've talked with the Euro crowd about places to advertise. Problem is there's not one Ferrari mag like Forza or Cavallino.
     
  5. jimpo1

    jimpo1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Jul 30, 2001
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    Since it's my fault you're thinking, I'll respond.

    I don't know what the right answer is, but there is already more content on the board than I can keep up with and I spend a LOT of time here. I surf the GFD, the Technical, Off Topic, Texas, and occassionally the Collectible . I know I miss a ton of good stuff, but there's just too much to keep up with. Maybe you need to put the blocks back up on the search engines? Growth is good, but explosive growth can be harmful.
     
  6. chaa

    chaa F1 Veteran

    Mar 21, 2003
    5,058
    Filter quality users) Oh dear i feal the charging to be on Ferrarichat site argument coming on.
     
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  8. amenasce

    amenasce Two Time F1 World Champ
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    I think there are a few european Ferrari only magazine.
    I know there was a french one but i havent seen it in the newstands for 3 months.

    What other way is there to advertise Fchat for a certain crowd only ?

    Maybe some Ferrari owners here in europe could have a banner on their car at their next meet ..


    Have you exchanged links with some european Ferrari clubs ?
    ?
     
  9. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    That's the first thing that entered my mind. Growing is a good thing, but you want to keep the quality or the noise level will kill the board. There is really only one answer.
     
  10. sherpa23

    sherpa23 F1 Veteran
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    May 28, 2003
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    Rob,

    I don't know that the problem is too many users - it could be too many sponsors. I have been thinking about adding one of my companies to the sponsor fold and while the price is right, I keep seeing new sponsors pop on here all the time and I can't help but wonder if the ability to attract people from the site is being diluted more and more with each additional sponsor. This makes little difference if this is the best site to reach this market but it becomes an issue if competing sites are taken into consideration and marketing folks start measuring bang for the buck. It's something that you might want to start paying attention to, if you haven't already.
     
  11. Wolfgang

    Wolfgang F1 World Champ
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    Mar 8, 2003
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    Howdy Rob,
    there is of course 1 very important magazine.
    "FERRARI WORLD"
    Its in german language and everybody can buy it in any store and also in whole Europe!
    Its also the offical house magazine from the "Ferrari Club Deutschland"
    with over 400 members and 1.600 Ferraris and lots of possibilities to advertice for a resonable price.

    You can get in touch with the magazine:

    Heel Verlag GmbH
    Gut Pottscheidt
    53639 Königswinter
    Phone: +49 2223-92300
    Fax: +49 2223-923013
    www.heel-verlag.de

    Or Direct to the Magazine (I would prefer this one first):

    FERRARI WORLD
    Friesenheimer Str. 18
    68169 Mannheim
    Phone: +49 621-712202
    Fax: +49 621-708660
    Mail: p.braun@heel-verlag.de

    And of course the FCD

    Ferrari Club Germany
    Thomas Gardemann
    Dröttboomshof
    46519 Alpen
    Phone: +49 2803-802947
    Fax: +49 2803-802945
    Mai: buero@ferrari-club-deutschland.de
    Web: www.ferrari-club-deutschland.de

    Just say Mr. Gardemann best regards from me;-)

    Feel free to ask me for any more infos; its a pleasure & honour for me to help you in my country with my language.

    Yours

    Wolfarossa
    FORZA FERRARI
     
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  13. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Hehe.
    :)
     
  14. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
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    Dec 1, 2000
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    We could have 40 sponsors right now and they would still be getting more exposure each than the 15 sponsors we had 3 months ago. Each week my banner ad software generates a report to each sponsor that tells them how many times their ad was viewed a day and how many actually clicked on it to visit their site. Of course those counts don't include the exposure from the Sponsors page, Newsletter, or mention within posts.

    I decided not to cap the number of sponsors, but cap the advertising rate because...

    1) Sponsors are not being diluted. The growth of the site (what this entire thread is about) is just crazy and even adding one or two sponsors a month is still allowing sponsors to achieve the same or more exposure from the previous month. We're giving the sponsors much more for their same dollar each and every month.

    2) The more the sponsors, the better for the users. Users might be made aware of more options to choose from in this small niche market of Ferrari. The days of a business cornering the market to uneducated customers is over. The power of the internet and shipping! Also, users can take advantage of specials offered by more sponsors.

    3) The real value sponsors get from FC is not the banner ad, but their involvement and activity in the community. It's up to each sponsor how much they participate whether there are 20 sponsors or 50.

    Ryan, your question has to do with sponsor growth, not user growth. User growth isn't being stunted by the growth of sponsors.
     
  15. MarkCollins

    MarkCollins F1 Rookie
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    Jul 2, 2002
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    Wolfgang

    "and everybody can buy it in any store and also in whole Europe!
    "

    not over here you can't! :)

    Rob, you have to understand the 'Unites States of Europe' is nothing like the USA, for starters we all speak different languages!
     
  16. Wolfgang

    Wolfgang F1 World Champ
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    Mar 8, 2003
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    O.K. to be 100% correct: In foreign countries (outside Germany) you have to go to an international book store! F.E. for London: Go to the airport "Heathrow". I have bought an issue of Ferrari World at Heathrow last year!

    Wolfarossa
    FORZA FERRARI
     
  17. sherpa23

    sherpa23 F1 Veteran
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    May 28, 2003
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    Bastuna

    Thanks for that post, Rob. I find that very interesting. Look for an email from me in the next few days.
     
  18. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    You can't pickup Forza at any newsstand in the US either. Have to go to a particularly good/international bookstore.

    Y ademas hablamos espanol in los Estados Unidos tambien.
    :)
     
  19. Brian C. Stradale

    Brian C. Stradale F1 Rookie
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    Mar 17, 2002
    3,603
    Dallas, TX, USA
    Its a really tough question.

    The bigger it gets, the more difficult it is to manage trolls... eventually, you get enough that they will spend all their time arguing with each other... but that will squeeze out all other activity. But how big is too big just depends... and a lot on moderation or other anti-troll methods.

    The bigger it gets, the more likely you are to get an answer. But also the more likely you are to get wrong answers. So much so, that it can get hard to tell right from wrong... truthfulness from BS. That's where you learn who's smart on a board and want the software to highlight their posts.

    The bigger it is the more variety you get... but also the more redundancy. For example, how many threads do we have on the barn in FL... something that was circulated a couple years ago... and a couple years before that. To combat redundancy, you need to slap people for not doing searches... how to "slap" them is the question. Moderators can lock dup threads with a reference to the proper one... but then people get lazy and let the moderators do the searches for them.

    Some of these things are already happening... but none are too bad... yet. Unfortunately, they all tend to take off exponentially because they compound on each other. So, serious moderation is a near reality.


    I still vote for a membership fee to allow you to post... that will form a self-filter as only the people who value this forum over all others will pay... and those only quality members will be posting. But let anybody lurk for free.

    Its either that ... or big-time moderation.
     
  20. noony

    noony F1 Veteran

    Nov 25, 2003
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    Johnathan
    Whereabouts in Berks are you? I'm in Lower Earley, Reading
     
  21. gabriel

    gabriel Formula 3

    >Rob, you have to understand the 'Unites States of Europe' is nothing like the USA, for starters we all speak different languages!

    Well, maybe since the EU has the Euro, along with the rest of it, you may as well work on proposing a common language!

    I'll even suggest a name: EUROSPEAK. :) :)

    >amenasce
    We need more European users. The site is dead in the morning....

    Naw, just get all the european owneres up a few hours earlier. :)

    *More* to the point, Rob has a good question. I wonder how many members actually own a ferrari? A 1,000 new users a month?

    My question would be as to how non users have much technical input.

    Rob states that they are 99.9% quality, so it must be so.
    Rob, if you change to be a member here, I'll stay. The dues would be insignificant compared to the price of ferrari ownership, IMHO.
    Poll the members on that!
     
  22. Wolfgang

    Wolfgang F1 World Champ
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    Mar 8, 2003
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    @Andreas,
    O.K, O.K., O.K. and one more time (and I already typed it in my first post):
    EUROPE !!!!
    We are talking about advertisement in EUROPE! (yep, there is realy something behind the plate margin "Tellerrand")
    And I mentioned in my first post:"....can buy it in any store and in whole Europe"
    Man, you give me a hard time here;-)
    Pfffff, B4 I`ll get the next mail, here we go:
    Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Danmark, Austria, Luxembourg, Spain, France....and maybe some more EU countries.

    Wolfarossa
    FORZA FERRARI
     
  23. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Wolfgang, I'm just giving you a hard time. I did pick up "Ferrari World" in Switzerland, I think it was the German version. But I also think I picked it up in London in English. Immer mit der Ruhe.
     
  24. Wolfgang

    Wolfgang F1 World Champ
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    *top-secret language on*
    Danke Andreas,
    Kein Problem, bin sowieso immer extrem entspannt:D
    Aber es ist halt eben für mich verdammt schwierig immer ALLES richtig zu übersetzten. Du kennst das Problem bestimmt noch besser aus Deiner Anfangszeit als Du aus der Schweiz nach USA gekommen bist; sorry es geht leider viel Scharm, Witz und Inhalt mit meiner schlechten Übersetzung verloren....I try harder!!!!
    Viele liebe Grüße
    *top-secret language off*

    Wolfarossa
    FORZA FERRARI
     
  25. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    Rob....

    May I respectfully suggest that if you charge for site access in some form, you'll have the answer to your question.
     
  26. gabriel

    gabriel Formula 3

    You have my second on that
     
  27. matkat

    matkat Formula 3

    Mar 18, 2003
    1,840
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    Dave McGuire
    Rob,you could consider Autoitalia magazine,though not a Ferrari only mag it has a lot of interesting ferrari articles in it.
    Best regards
    Dave McGuire
     
  28. trkevin

    trkevin Formula Junior

    Nov 3, 2003
    889
    Belgium
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    K. Blommaert
    That's totally right Dave. I saw in this months or last months edition of AutoItalia an article about Carlos Monteverdi's F-cars like his 750 Monza and 250TR. There was also an article of an 288GTO evo in that magazine.

    I have no edition of it, but I believe it's in English. Can anyone confirm this?
    This could really be a great magazine to advertise.

    Another way to get more european members: All members wear FerrariChat.com shirts at Ferrari event here around Europe. And it's also an easy way to recognize each other.
     

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