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Thread: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

  1. #1
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    Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Every time I turn up on the forums I get upset with the amount of self-promotion.

    Its like this:

    P1: "Hi, not sure about what machine I should get, can I have some advice?"
    P2: "Hi, Im Sponsor X, were local, take a look at our range"
    P3: "Hi, I bought from Sponsor Y, you should see them"
    P4: "Hi, I bought from Sponsor Z, you should see them"
    P1: "Hi, Ive bought from Sponsor Z, theyre the best"
    P4: "Thanks P1, at Sponsor Z we love to help, another satisfied customer!"

    *new hx user (P1) hangs around the hx forum but is now called P3 or P4. cycle repeats itself. P1 also posts a seperate topic about how wonderful life is under the cafe of explicit link to sponsor.

    every sponsor Ive ever dealt with has been very, very helpful to me. occasionally one of us will have a bad experience with one supplier or another, its the nature of selling expensive, finicky shiny things to snobby, finkicky people like us. this isnt singling out any sponsor - its singling out a disturbing trend away from helping people by providing them with enough information to make a decision towards giving them a straight sales pitch. my belief is that it damages our coffeesnobs community and encourages people to go in to bat for the sponsor they purchased their machine from.

    how about we make a concerted effort just to say "sponsors are on the left, and they can help you when it comes to your purchase of a machine, and are/may be good places to try one out in your area. also, x,y and z may be relevant technical/cash factors in choosing your machine".

    bluntly, Im never sure where to talk about extraction (which seems to be the main point to me of espresso and one of the most important things to talk about. I try and hang here because there are so many wonderful, coffee-loving freaks like me! But Im sick to the back teeth of trying to look at the pointy end forum, where every topic Ive seen lately has sponsor links in it. I may not be the most [s]profligate[/s] prolific poster, but I know Id participate far more if the level of pitching going on around me. at most events I attend (especially coffee socials), one of the rules is "no pitchslapping"

    eg. 4. no pitchslapping: clients and projects are kinda out of bounds (unless you have a humiliating disaster to retell- then go for it)

    ...or am I the only one who feels this way and do I just need to moan less and improve my mental filters?

    John

  2. #2
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    John I think you need to check your filters.

    I see lots of advice or more correctly, lots of questions to get the newb thinking.
    After theyve narrowed down their requirements a little, even with more refinement needed, they are directed to a sponsor.
    I agree that sponsor can be the one the respondent has dealt with, but that is natural and also not a third party endorsement (which would be more like what you are percieving).

    I bought my equipment from Chris at Talk Coffee; at that time there were not any Sydney based sponsors.
    Since then Ive come to know some of my local sponsors very well and have no problem encouraging people to check them out, but I still praise the service I received from Chris.

    I think what your seeing is a result of the excellent service given by the CS sponsors.
    Would you rather they were not a cut above other suppliers?
    If they were average, Im fairly sure there would be more of the "sponsors are on the left" only response.

    I dont go in to bat for Chris because he doesnt need any help.

    To finish off my response to you I decided to check the most recently active thread about advice regarding a new machine.
    Being an auditor I figured that would me my random sample.
    Admittedly the OP had already narrowed down his choice already somewhat.

    Have a read (link below) and youll see that Chris gave the first response (as himself not with his sponsor hat on).

    He directed the OP to use the "contact all sponsors" email address.

    That was the perfect opportunity for self promotion, as the poster was in Melbourne, but he didnt self promote, he promoted all sponsors.

    Wanting to buy Isomac Tea or similar
    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1244880931

  3. #3
    TC
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Hi John,

    Im with TG on this one.

    We have a terrific forum with well over 8000 great members who exist, on the whole, very harmoniously. I am yet to see another forum which runs so smoothly. The level of support provided is incredible- from basic training, to where do I get this, complete rebuilds, *technical information (just read wsullys 30 page PID guide as an example *:o) and free activities provided by sponsors. All you have to do is browse away and you get this for nada. Your beans, if you purchase the from Andy are also subsidised all the way to your door. Much of this happens because sponsors contribute to help meet the running costs of the forum (and because Andy is a workaholic). This is just one contribution that many active sponsors make. Dennis hand is in his pocket again tonight, so that CSers can share Erins latte art blend. What will Dennis get out of this? The answer is probably nothing, but Id bet hell sleep with a smile.

    Many members choose to support CS by purchasing from sponsors and its normal that they want to share their experiences if they have been postive- and the overwhelming majority of expriences are. Its the same as telling a mate at the pub about the bloke you purchased "X" from when you have a good experience. This is our online coffee pub.

    There is no compulsion on you to read each post. Its your choice to read the occasional advertising post- or not, but keep in mind that if CS sponsors didnt exist, we may well be looking at a completely different experience here or CS might not even exist. If it wasnt for Andys vision, CS would have folded in its first 12 months and youd be staring at a blank screen. I for one am thrilled that we are all here. I cannot imagine a life without CS. Hats off to Andy and his choice of sponsors. ;)

    Must be time for a coffee and to read a few more posts.

    2mcm


  4. #4
    Super Moderator scoota_gal's Avatar
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Hey John...

    I actually think that the other blokes ie P2, P3 and P4 should be the ones who are chipped for not giving out enough info! ;D Actually, it is really their fault because their post could have been more informative and then include a plug about their fave sponsor! But, we cant tell the membership what to do here!

    From my point of view, there are heaps of HX machines too and not everyone has one...so I think that compared to say...oh the Sunbeam and Silvia, there are less comments made about HX machines as well..
    some auditor type might be able to back me up here... ;)


    Anyhow...have another coffee, mate... :D

  5. #5
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Quote Originally Posted by 5E737279637E636E170 link=1246549510/0#0 date=1246549510
    how about we make a concerted effort just to say "sponsors are on the left, and they can help you when it comes to your purchase of a machine, and are/may be good places to try one out in your area. also, x,y and z may be relevant technical/cash factors in choosing your machine".


    John
    Hi John as a "newbee" i often read the threads you speak of, yes sometime a few sponsors post. Often it is we have X & X brands its (they) are a pretty good machine, good build etc. But mostly I feel they are only trying to help not drum up business.

    I am glad people say X sponsor is good they helped me with X, makes me feel comfortable sending an email and asking a Q and saying i am from CS....... i know most (if not all?) will take the time to answer even if there is no sale......

    thats called SERVICE, and i like good service it makes me shop there again.......

    IF (and i am sure it wont) CS turns into a sponsor bidding for business war..... we will all be moving on and it will be a sad day.

    Like others have said, if you dont like those posts.......? what can you do thats the way of the world...???

    happy extracting :)

    Maheel

  6. #6
    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Quote Originally Posted by 5A565F52525B370 link=1246549510/4#4 date=1246573649
    IF (and i am sure it wont) CSturns into a sponsor bidding for business war.
    Behind the scenes the mod team have regular chats about getting the right balance and in fact we also have another sponsors only area that the balance of good business and helpful information is discussed in too. There are even sponsor guidelines on where to "sell". All of this is out of the public eye so it could appear that there is no management but in fact it is a dynamic and continuing process.

    The commercial reality is that CS site sponsors subsidise the website costs, product pricing and freight (eg: try and ship things to Perth at $1/kg without subsidy!!) and Im sure that most CSrs understand that and in turn support the sponsors.

    I can certainly see Johns point and we are very aware of the potential problem but I think we are close to the right balance at the moment but promise we will continue to keep a crytical eye on it.

    8-)

  7. #7
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    As a user it is your job to shop around and search through all the information you get.

    If you dont want the answers you alluded to dont ask the B!@#$% question.

    I have to admit that this site is very pro sponsor but that is ok. They are the ones that pay the bills. When I become a regular on a forum I like to gauge what it is like first. If I dont like it I leave. I dont try to change it. The fact is the moderators and sponsors put a lot of effort into this forum and they have the right for it to be however they want it to be.

    As I write there are about 60 members online and 60 guests. Seems to me that CS must be doing something right.

  8. #8
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Very brave post John, I often talk my mind at work and end up in my fair share of battles. I respect your honesty and have thought there are some threads that do seem very promotional (generally it is the snobbers - not so much the sponsors) and I have been left wondering how objective was the advice? I guess the flip side is some people have had great experiences with sponsors and genuinely believe that brand x is a great brand. It is a tough balancing act, I have seen car forums based in the US where people are attacking sponsors and sponsors clearly having a go at other sponsors, it can get ugly and unpleasant.

  9. #9
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    John ,I have bought some stuff from site sponsors, 2 of them from self promotion or advertising on this site.
    I have no problem with telling someone that Talk Coffee or Pullman Tampers have a great service and products.

    When it comes to self promoting if you have a good product and great customer service and you know it, why not let people know about it.

    Also there are plenty of free events that sponsors put on. I went to one at Di Bella in NorthMelbourne that was just fantastic, didnt cost me a cent and I got a free book and food and drinks and I got to have a lengthy discussion with their buisness development manager, who was more than happy to answer any questions .

    If all this sounds like Im supporting the site sponsors, then I guess I have had a good experience buying and dealing with them.

    Thats my 50 cents worth! :)

    Marty

  10. #10
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Hey self promotion is a bloody good thing. Would you go eat at a restaurant if you see the head chef in the streets handing out brochures 2 hours before service? Of course you would because they are going the extra yard. This is the exact same thing as that. I know that if I ever need parts for my machine there is one and only one sponsor I would even consider buying them from and that is because he was the one that took the extra effort to help me out.

  11. #11
    A_M
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    There is more value and trust in any word of mouth advertising Vs a publication in a mag or the local paper etc.

    1: Not aware on any CS being involved in underhanded promotions...

    2: We all have a favourites for many reasons... Location / Ease of Access / Support and or they like teh same equipment

    3: Most of us know and are up front as to who we prefer... But in general happy to recommend/ support all sponsors.

    4: The sponsors have their own differences and in general keep it out of teh Forums... This I like and respect.

    5: No one product will suite every one... It is about fit for purpose (FFP)...


    The issue is that people ask an opened question, provide little or not background and when CS members and or a sponsor attempts to provide Information / Advice and or asks further Questions... Some see that as - marketing and pressure to be directed down a particular path...

    IT IS NOT... It is about trying to determine FFP

    Quote Originally Posted by 674A4B405A475A572E0 link=1246549510/0#0 date=1246549510
    eg. 4. no pitchslapping: clients and projects are kinda out of bounds (unless you have a humiliating disaster to retell- then go for it)
    As to the above comment... Sheep... That all I can say...

    A: Good news travels so far... Bad new and a put-downs get promoted and embellished and travels much further than good news...

    It needs to be balanced and in context.....

    Many a bad story actually identifies an opportunity for all... But often the sponsor and or service provider is never given the chance to comment or implement actions to correct as everyone just sits around the BBQ and a red or two and wingers...

    M/Soft cops it... Car manufactures cop it..... and the list can go on...

    I just got a new car... Had a minor issue or two and over a coffee (Car yard coffee) and a pleasant chat.. Every thing was sorted and I could not be happier... Prado all the way :-)

    Oh... I like Chrom as a Beta browser, love FF and hate IE (except when the bank requires it - FFP) ....



  12. #12
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    I have no problems recomending a buisness that I am happy with the service or products. Infact the only way I get work in my hobby buisness is by WOM. The best advertising one can get. So If/When I need a new item I will evaluate all possibilities and purchase the right item for me and if the place deserves praise then that is what they will get.
    Weigh up if sponsor a or b has what I want and the service to match then choose wisly.
    Regards
    Crisp Image

  13. #13
    Senior Member Koffee_Kosmo's Avatar
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    You know, - I dont care either way

    I read most posts and comment appropriately

    KK

  14. #14
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    My long reply earlier sufficed to say that "If no-one else has a problem with it, best I learn to put up with it".

    in reply to TG - Ive cleaned my mental filters with Caffeto, which removes even the most troublesome coffee stains! available from nearly every supplier on the left!

    My main concern is that the pointy end forum no longer helps people determine fit for purpose as well as it once did. If someones upgrading the clamour is often "I have this machine which fit my purpose and you should buy it from the same place I did", while forum members with commercial experience or more than one of these beasts will just say "hey, hey, its a toss-up! pick the one with the rims you like"


  15. #15
    Senior Member caffeol's Avatar
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Quote Originally Posted by 436E6F647E637E730A0 link=1246549510/13#13 date=1247466441
    Ive cleaned my mental filters with Caffeto
    I believe that its coffee that has been shown to remove plaque from the brain but if Caffeto has added this feature they should update their label. ;)

  16. #16
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Quote Originally Posted by 527F7E756F726F621B0 link=1246549510/13#13 date=1247466441
    My main concern is that the pointy end forum no longer helps people determine fit for purpose as well as it once did.
    I disagree.
    AM and I are forever telling newbs to work out their requirements and to go see a sponsor for some hands on playing.
    If we occasionally mention a particular sponsor weve had experience with I dont see anything wrong with that.

    We do try steer them into making their own decision based on wants and needs.

  17. #17
    TC
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    man!!

    Are we there yet mum??? ::)

  18. #18
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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    am i missing something 2mcm?

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    Re: Leave...come back...leave.... come back...

    Quote Originally Posted by 174850464D464A4343404048444B250 link=1246549510/16#16 date=1247473421
    man!!

    Are we there yet mum??? *::)
    After sitting here reading P1 - P15 on this thread with :o on my face, was relieved to get to P16 (almost the end - thankfully) and finish up with *;D instead. *Thanks 2mcm - my thoughts exactly!!!

    CS Forum - its all good!
    Slowcoffee.



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