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Old 03-25-2005, 02:12 PM   #29
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Monaco Owners' Forum Request

Some Monaco owners feel they should have their own forum in which to post similar to the ones we've already established for Newmar, Winnebago, and Workhorse to name a few. The moderators of this Suggestion Box forum have brought this request before the administration for discussion. Special thanks to Ken Wilson "TXiceman" for his efforts in bringing this issue to the administration.

Most of our moderators and administrators, myself included, are opposed to adding more brand-owners groups into the Owner Section. Most of us feel that individual owners' brand forums dilute the other forums and some others have indicated having specific forums can drive new users to the site. We're a split group.

Some of the concern is once there's an individual owners' brand forum, the members with that brand seem to post all their messages in that forum, whether they are specific to the brand or not. A recent review of the Winnebago, Alpine and Newmar forums reveals that about 25% of the posts are not specifically related to the manufacturer. As example, there are currently posts asking about motorcycle lifts, duo-therm thermostats, generator opinions, ham radios, etc., in the manufacturers forum. Obviously those topics would have had much better response if placed in the general sections.

This dilution hurts the other forums by taking away message traffic that would have made them more useful and more attractive to other members. There is skepticism that we actually gain members by an individual owners' brand forum; what we gain there we may be losing elsewhere in the forums.

Most of the individual owners' brand forums currently located in our "Owner's Corner" are our sponsors and bring in operating revenue to iRV2 to help support it. Forum sponsorship which includes running a banner ad is currently $840 per year. There are challenges in getting large OEM firms to commit to funding an open forum where people can freely bash or praise their products, it's more involved than just getting them to agree to pay.

When we started promoting and selling forum sponsorships, we were wanting to increase our membership numbers. We have pursued this course since early 2002 and now that we're around three years into this promotional effort, we're starting to realize that we fractionilize people and posts with this strategy. However, as seen with the Winnebago forum, it has also has brought in a bunch of new members. When we analyze our post count, our strategy has given us much needed ad inventory which makes advertising with us attractive to our customers.

Additionally, we felt that having Winnebago, Workhorse, Newmar, and the others associated with us and supporting the site would tend to lend a lot of credibility to iRV2 in the RVing industry and with the RV consumers.

Currently we have RVupgrades as the major supporter of the site and the aforementioned OEM advertisers are not as critical of an issue that they once where. Our founder, Bill Rowell "Warpath", continues to use his own money to keep things going; before the promotional efforts he was the only financial supporter of the site. Bill is in favor of whatever is best for growing the membership and making the forums as active and useful as possible.

Bill has taken a look around the Internet looking at the big forums, sites with 50,000 plus members. Most of the successful large forums have 20 to 30 forums, we currently have over 60. It looks like over time we have diluted ourselves and instead of creating more posts, we may have lowered our numbers because people only go directly to a forum and miss topics that they may have posted in if they had seen them. We have concerns that this may have negatively impacted our growth. There have been boards explode with members once they reach that 10,000 member level and iRV2 seems to have floundered along.

We're going to start looking at each forum and see if we can consolidate some of the related ones and we currently have no plans to add new ones such as the suggested Monaco Forum. As long as a forum is active, it may be in our best interest to leave it alone. Each will be evaluated for effectiveness.

These contemplated changes will evolve over time and will gradually be worked in as our administrative team ponders the value and merit of each.

We thank each of you who posted here for your suggestions and input and hopefully I have cleared up the question about why we aren't adding a Monaco Forum.
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Old 03-26-2005, 04:52 AM   #30
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if consolidation is the goal, and a Monaco forum is not recommended due to this, then why wouldnt the first steps be to eliminate all the "brand" forums?
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Old 03-26-2005, 04:52 AM   #31
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Thanks for the explanation HitchHiker. You do have a point about having too many groups.

I find myself spending much more time on another forum---mainly because this forum is relatively dormant at times. Perhaps it really is caused by a dilution of subjects.

One separate section for -Class A another for Class C and so on, would attract more "posters" than the set-up used now. Let's face it---most RV problems can be found to exist in any brand--regardles of your bias toward the one you own now.

In any event---thanks for the explanation.

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Old 03-26-2005, 05:07 AM   #32
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by tammyinwv:
... then why wouldnt the first steps be to eliminate all the "brand" forums? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Most of the individual owners' brand forums currently located in our "Owner's Corner" are our sponsors and bring in operating revenue to iRV2 to help support it.
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Old 03-26-2005, 05:22 AM   #33
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I'm confused! Of the seven brand specific sections, only two mention they are sponsored? Are the other five also paid for but just not credited? If I understand it, the total justification of having a brand specific area is money? Those of us that have supported this site from the beginning have no input into it's content? In the past, many members have asked for an area and were granted it regardless of volume or usage. It might appear that the only area that requires sponsorship is in the brand specific area? If you cruise through the site, there are several areas that have very minimal usage (some almost non existant) that remain intact. If the reasoning was to reduce volume should these not be gone. I'm sure some of them are not sponsored. One of the two or three largest manufacturers in the US are not represented, while some of the very smallest have an area. I believe Monaco as a corporation is the largest manufacturer of diesel motorhomes in America. It's a shame that a site like this is driven by nothing except money and not to help their members.I've been here since the beginning and am very disapointed.
Also, I might mention that on 3/7 one of the reasons for not giving us space was there were not enough members with Monaco products, as it appeared that there were in fact quite a few members with Monaco, the new reason is no money from Monaco????
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Old 03-26-2005, 06:04 AM   #34
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Texas Bubba:
If you cruise through the site, there are several areas that have very minimal usage (some almost non existent) that remain intact. If the reasoning was to reduce volume should these not be gone. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>This will shortly change, we are currently working on consolidation.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I believe Monaco as a corporation is the largest manufacturer of diesel motorhomes in America. It's a shame that a site like this is driven by nothing except money and not to help their members. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>That's not fair. It's only in recent times that we have been able to reduce the amount of funding that we "require" from outside sources however we are still soliciting sponsorships because we appreciate having large OEMs and suppliers interact with our forums.

Since you've been here for 5 years you will no doubt remember my annual fund raising drive. We would see 50 to 60 members contributing annually in amounts that made them feel comfortable and we appreciated that. We placed a "iRV2.com Contributor" descriptor under their screen name in appreciation. We've since suspended that effort because we can derive funding from alternate sources. So we are not sitting by with a tin cup waiting for donations. We still offer the opportunity for our members to respond financially when they are motivated to do so that is why we still have the Contributions Link active. We are seriously considering removing this feature in the very near term.

One thing that we did promise and that's to be here for our members "24/7 - 365" and to that end we have kept our promise. The board remains free from membership fees and we've still here.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">.. the new reason is no money from Monaco???? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>The Owner's Corner is a feature that we offer the OEMs. Thankfully we have seen where the current list of sponsors have seen benefit is supporting a users group in a public forum. For "any" manufacturer to allow themselves to be in the spotlight where anyone can say anything about their product is a tough concept to grasp but they are willing to support not only our board but their members that use the board.

When iRV2 rolled out in early 2000 the operating costs for the board were minimal. The current product that we offer our members encompasses "8 major features" that needs to run on some of the latest hi-tech computer equipment in order to deliver content that allows space for it to exist and room for the data within the features.

In closing I would welcome Monaco/Holiday Rambler as a "Forum Sponsor" if they so choose to do so however we feel that we shouldn't spawn new forums at this time just to say we have them. There's also a problem where manufactures don't want their trade name used without specific permission as well.

I appreciate your view in this matter and as always we'll be here anytime you click on us.
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Old 03-27-2005, 05:54 AM   #35
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Driver, I'm going to quit "beating a dead horse" in a minute. You did not answer the one main question I asked. It appears that out of seven brand specific areas, only two are sponsored? Am I misreading this, or do five brands get a room without sponsorship? I would have thought that if the others were paying, they would have wanted a link also? Would seem to be not fair for some brands to get a "free" ride and not one of the largest ones?
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Old 03-27-2005, 06:42 AM   #36
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Texas Bubba:
You did not answer the one main question I asked. It appears that out of seven brand specific areas, only two are sponsored? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>That's true only 2 are listed as Forum Sponsored By: Workhorse does actually sponsor the WCMC Forum.

Regarding Alpine, Fleetwood, Lance and Newmar they are a work in progress and I still am trying to get those folks aboard but the negotiations are slower than molasses but I'm used to that.

Going forward and in the very near term these forums may cease to exist if we don't get the support that we are looking for from these OEMs.

It isn't fair to the OEMs that have paid for their forum sponsorships while others are content to watch and do nothing to support their user group.

Reviewing what I said before the "Owner's Corner" is a part of the website that we have made available to the RV Industry so that they can participate in our forums.

Your closing statement hit the nail right on the head.
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Old 04-25-2005, 05:35 PM   #37
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I think it would be good to have a Monoco Products Forum. I liked the Workhourse Forum when I had that product,
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Old 02-15-2006, 05:39 PM   #38
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Well, since we have just added a new area for Ford chasis and Freightliner I thought it was time to bring this one to the top again. If you reread this entire thread and the other one that was similiar, I think you will find there were many more requests for this Monaco forum than there ever was for Ford or Freightliner? Since it seems the policy that was in affect back when we asked for a Monaco area Has changed, maybe now is the time to start one for us???
First we said all areas had to be sponsered, then it was low demand. Now that we know we don't need a sponser to pay for a new area and Monacao with it's entire family seems to be the largest brand on this board, maybe we can add it now???? Diluting the board can't be the problem since we added two new one's this week and that doesn't seem to be a problem???? Thanks in advance for your consideration.
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Old 02-15-2006, 06:48 PM   #39
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I thought it was time to bring this one to the top again </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
MISSION ACCOMPLISHED, Texas Bubba. And thank you for bringing it back into our gunsights. At this time, all we can promise you is that these issues are all being reviewed, and more changes (hopefully to improve our members experience here on iRV2) will be coming in the not too distant future. Please be assurred your comments are important to us and are being considered. Thanks for your participation! ED
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Old 06-01-2006, 01:01 PM   #40
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by safcrkr:
Seeing as Monaco has such a large selection of products,AND,such GREAT products,why can't we
add this FORUM to this site? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Announcement: A Monaco Owners forum was added today, go to it by clicking here.

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