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  #1  
Old 10-18-2008, 08:00 PM
sororitygirl sororitygirl is offline
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Exclamation The Eternal Recruitment Dilemma
So the boyfriend and I are leading a PvP-oriented guild in Guild Wars. And in our efforts to recruit members and ally ourselves with other guilds, I feel like we run into the same balancing act over and over and I want your guys' opinions on this. This question has been danced around and partially addressed throughout the leader support forums:

How do you recruit quantity and still get quality members?

It seems to me that most people either:
1) spam advertisements and invite just about anyone that wants to join to their guild, or...
2) barely recruit at all, only inviting friends or friends of friends that eventually become guildless and want a home...

But this becomes hard for many reasons,
as I'm sure you all have experienced.

With the first option you end up with a group of very diverse people that often don't get along, you get "noobs" that just try to leech free stuff, or people that just for whatever reason don't get along or aren't the kind of person you want to build the character of guild you ultimately want.

And with the second option, your guild is often lonely and small, because it is only your closest of friends. And while even this still SOUNDS appealing to me, it's ultimately been a problem for us because some of our best gaming friends are still in other guilds that they are reluctant to leave.

SO: My only solution has been try as hard as I can to put myself out there to meet new players. I join pick up groups all over the different aspects of the game and am always asking about peoples' guilds and alliances in the hopes of meeting new people. It kind of works, but it's slow and painful and I'm still never sure if there isn't a better way to go about it.

What do you guys think??
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  #2  
Old 10-21-2008, 09:11 PM
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I think basing leadership off a relationship will only end in tears.
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Old 10-21-2008, 10:33 PM
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I can think of a few others.

First, an extension to your (1): spam, but have really strict application policies. You get lots of applications, but reject all but the good ones.

Second, develop your guild's reputation. Probably the best thing I can think of is to claim some niche on your server that other guilds don't quite fit, and then make yourself googlable. That way, when someone is looking, and searches for [medium rp guild "kirin tor"] or whatever, you're the first hit.
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Old 10-22-2008, 10:57 AM
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I agree with what Kjallstrom said. I lead an FPS clan, not a guild, so the numbers are necessarily smaller as we're still pretty new, but the same principle applies. We put our members through a 4 week recruitment process, during which we assessed them not only for skill and maturity, but also for personality and humour. Even if they were mature and skillful players, if there were any significant personality conflicts between them and current members or leadership, we thanked them (and kept in contact with them for casual games) but declined their application. Pretty much all of them were fine with that; the ones that weren't were the ones we were rejecting on the basis of immaturity anyway. And again, as Kjallstrom said, we pushed out rep. For us that involved renting a fairly large public game server of our own, despite the fairly steep cost involved (it was, to begin with, only financed by myself and Digit, and I don't have a job) and hosting social events every week or two. We also pulled heavily on contacts with other clans that our friends were in.

At the start we had five members who were already friends. We currently stand at 14 members who truly respect and get along with each other, and we wouldn't have become friends with them WITHOUT doing all this stuff to grow our clan.

So there is a midpoint between having only close friends and recruiting total strangers - make the strangers your friends. I recognise that this is, however, much harder for a guild than for a clan. You can't host your own servers for something like GW, and you're dealing with much larger numbers and might not have the time to put them through the kind of recruiting regime that we did. But it's a thought - at least try a week or two trialling, and if it doesn't work out, thank them and look elsewhere.
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Old 10-22-2008, 11:24 AM
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I agree with Kjallstrom's second opinion. Become the guild people WANT to join. It's a bit of hard work, but when you get there you'll feel good.

Example: Warhammer Online isn't a very old game, but my guild has been known as the "good guild that does fun stuff", so we get tells from everybody and their mother about joining. The reason why we achieved this is simple. We went out with the intention to be seen! We did quests together, we did pvp together, and we socialized with everybody who came along, inviting them to our party, and then later to the guild - if they seemed like decent people.
Of course, some of them left the guild, and others have been removed due to being totally stupid, but we've grown into a great guild, with a lot of nice people who help each other, and as I said - people want to join us!

Just put in a few hardcore "we're going to be seen" hours with the guild, and you'll get noticed.
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Old 10-22-2008, 02:11 PM
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I have a similar problem. It seems no matter how hard I try I can't get anyone to join. The people I do get to join will leave within the week because there are only a few of us. It seems no one understands that you have to stick around and help build up to get a Kinship running.

I have done all the steps I post a message out there and most often then not no one answers. On LOTRO I think the problem is that my server's founding Kinships have already recruited the majority. I find it difficult to be special in any way because there's nothing to go off of when everyone is reluctant to try new things.
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Old 10-22-2008, 03:50 PM
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Another thing would be to talk to the established guilds' leaders; if you claim your niche, ask them to forward applicants that they would reject but fit you better.

Our guild is medium RP, with some casual endgame PvE, and we have contact with both small heavy RP guilds and more hardcore raiding guilds. If the heavy RP guild gets an applicant who isn't committed to their level of immersion, they send them our way; similarly, if we get an applicant who doesn't appear to be interested in RP, we send them on to a PvE guild we know.

Get all of your guild websites Google-indexed, and make sure that you link to your friend guilds. It's a good way to get reputation, get talked about by some of the senior people on a given server. Introduce yourself and get to know them, social network, etc., etc.
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Old 10-23-2008, 09:51 AM
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I do think it's a matter of networking and not being overly inclusive. I'm running a RP guild - and rp is so thin on the ground you would take a week to scrape up enough to get it into a spoon. But there ARE people who rp. So, what I do is find all the rp guilds of a game, introduce myself, ak if we can get involved in hunts or anything else they've got going and generally get to know them, plot stories, and so on. If they've got someone come their way who wants to play a race/character type which may not suit their own guild, more often than not they will send the character over to me for review, and vice versa. This works out well for everyone, as we get more chances to interact and pvp if we're both a strong group.

Sometimes, however I think you have to be satisfied with having a small group - rp isn't big these days, and is a niche thing. So, I just focus on getting rpers who are interested in giving a go, AND making sure that there's enough for them to do on their own so they don't feel like giving up. Again, this is where networking comes in, and making sure everyone's got some storyline or task to do, both gaming and storywise. And then, of course REWARD THEM. That's important.

Good luck with it, either way!
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Old 10-23-2008, 03:28 PM
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Yeah the best thing you can do is let your guild name be known, either in a good light or a negative light.
Making a presence is key, have guild outings, and always have room for ONE or TWO players in the party slot, that way if you stumble across an untagged soloer, you can invite and help them out, even if it just for one lousy quest that will net your members zilch.
This tactic will make your guild memorable to those who may be looking for a guild/new guild.
Another smart tactic is to get into party/group situations with other guilds, and find out about them, and their leadership. Goto their web site, learn about the leaders and then befriend them. Any and all of the "great" guilds are more than willing to impart advice and possibly friendship to the little clans of the world, so utilize them. You can gain allies and potential recruits for your own guild this way.
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Old 10-28-2008, 03:48 PM
sororitygirl sororitygirl is offline
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Thanks for the ideas guys, everyone made a valid contribution except Jodou.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kjallstrom View Post
(1): spam, but have really strict application policies. You get lots of applications, but reject all but the good ones.

Second, develop your guild's reputation.
Good advice to add to the list. Mirrors what I like, that Pocketwolf said, about "Making the strangers your friends". We've definitely been using this as the policy, but it's still easier said than done.

Several of you mentioned making yourself Google-able too. Definitely something I hadn't realized I should do, so that can go on the list.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scick
Just put in a few hardcore "we're going to be seen" hours with the guild, and you'll get noticed.
Good idea too, I like the way you put that =) I have been trying to do it all on my own more or less but I think I need to spread the faerie dust to all the guildies and get our do-gooderness out in public. Make it an outing.

Both Kjallstrom, Dre and Vharen make good points about networking with other guilds that are recruiting similar players. I may have to go search out some guild leaders of friends' guilds now and see if they can spread the word!

Thanks for your $0.02.
Any more gamer wisdoms...?
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