Wednesday, November 01, 2006

The Great Make-Under

A few days ago, I stumbled across the secret to making a ton of cash.

Unfortunately, it’s not tons of real cash, it’s SL cash…but let’s just say the amount of money I made has jumped a whopping 4000% in the space of a few weeks.

Basically, if we’re talking in terms of the amount of real money I’d get if I cashed in my SL money, I’ve jumped from making about 40 cents a week to about $20 a week.

This is kinda sad when you realize that’s pretty much the same wage I used to get at my very first Saturday job.

So what’s the shocking secret?

For added effect here, pretend I’ve just handed you a ‘DaVinci Code’ style cryptex and told you the password was ‘ultimate secret’. With trembling hands, you align the dials and pull it apart, revealing an ancient yellowing scroll that reads:

Make people believe you don’t actually need or want their money.

Basically, I made over my store. Well, technically, that’s the wrong word. What I really did was give my store a make-under. Before the make-under, I made my store as inviting and friendly as possible. Now it’s a monochrome shrine to the God of “I Have More Money Than You”.

Take a look at my old shop sign and logo:

I worked fairly hard on this. I created a background, composited four pictures of my model wearing different outfits, put in my store name and tag-line (complete with drop shadow), and even went ahead and using all kinds of Photoshop magicks, even put in a subtle bloom lighting effect.

Turned out this, along with my pricing, was a recipe for disaster.

Why?

I was trying too hard. Plus, there was the small matter of the ‘great prices’ tagline. Apparently, no established SL player will be caught dead buying from a ‘cheap’ store. Half the fun of a new outfit is when someone asks you where you got it, telling them the price, safe in the knowledge that the person asking you can in no way afford it.

Add to that the point that my prices, while exceptionally low by SL standards, is just out of newbie range. Sure, I might be selling an outfit for L$150 that would cost at least L$500 – L$800 elsewhere…but that doesn’t help if the customer base you’re attracting only has L$50 to spend.

In other words, my store wasn’t doing so well thanks to the phenomenon that causes someone to walk past Wal-mart, where you can get a three-pack of plain white T-shirts for less than $10… and instead buy exactly the same T-shirt at a designer store, where you pay $80 and only get one.

So I decided to go a little “upscale”.

My prices remained the same, but I changed my store logo to this:

Sexy, huh?

Actually, it pretty much killed me to make this. Black and White? What’s the point in Photoshopping something if you can’t add all kinds of gradients and lens flares?

But it did the trick.

My old sign said “Look! Here’s what you can buy! I’m selling it cheap as well!”

My new sign says “I’m so rich, I don’t need to advertise. I don’t even need your money. Hell, I don’t even want it. In fact, the whole thing is a huge hassle, so if you really must buy something, be quick about it, lest I smite you.”

I even changed from “Paulius Designs” to “PD”…you see, I’m so successful, I don’t even need to tell you the name of my store!

Apparently, people no longer care if my clothes are good or not. I’ve arrived at the Calvin Klein stage where people aren’t buying my clothes for the looks…they’re buying it for the label.

5 comments:

MC Etcher said...

That's so odd. Humans are wacky. I've always thought that the name of the company should tell you what service they provide - maybe just saying "Paulius Designs" makes people curious about what it is you sell, and draws them in.

Unless you're in the middle of the garment district or something...

mistyforeverlost said...

He's in a quaint little shopping mall that tells him every freakin thing a person does as soon as they enter his store. My avatar picks her nose...he knows about it.

Trust me...I tried it out one day...LOL

Great Going P!!!!

Saffyre said...

I love that store! and you KNOW i have most of your outfits, I advertise them for you too when people ask.

PD rocks! :o)

mandapanda girl.. how the fuck do i refer to myself?? said...

Hahahahaha paul,.. Why do I not believe a word this says..

Hell yeah PD is the SL CK. GOod job. Of course I have your clothes, and I Uh advertize all the timme.. esp withmy tag!

i miss you sooooooo much

Paulius said...

MC : I think I've worked it out...now people can say "This outfit? It's a PD!" Which sounds WAY cooler that Paulius designs

Misty : A GROSS exageration. All that happens is I get an email telling my your name, what you bought, how much you paid and what location you're in...and whether the mind control drugs have taken effect yet.

Saffyre : Why thank you, and PD does, indeed, Rock...I'd even go so far as to say it 'rawks'

Manda : You may refer to yourself as "The Triplets"