[Announement] “Second Life shopping events as a phenomenon” – The Grid, Unraveled

SL shopping events as a phenomenon - The Grid, Unraveled

When: 2016/09/25, 11 AM SLT
Length: 1 hour
Hosted by: K.T. Burnett (KayT Resident)

We are discussing:
Second Life shopping events as a phenomenon

All the fashionistas of Second Life cannot stay indifferent to the multitude of shopping events that have absorbed the Grid – and the new ones keep appearing each month. Designers work day and night to bring in new apparel items in time for the events they participate in. Residents hardly keep up their Linden Dollars balance with all the new releases, exclusives, deals, that they cannot resist missing. The Second Life Destination Guide has a separate “Shopping Events” category now. How come they got so popular in such a short timespan? Is this what Second Life really needs? What purpose do shopping events serve for residents who choose to create them, participate in them and/or shop at them? Are there possible alternatives to shopping events to achieve the same goals they do, so we can have some variety on the fashion events field?

We will be having a panel of special guests who will share their experience on the field – and you, the audience, will be able to take part in the conversation via chat.

Cannot make it to the show? It will be recorded and posted on the YouTube Street Wear Live Channel, so you will not miss it.

So, mark September 25th on you calendar and join the discussion at the place where you will be heard!

Your destination: Street Wear Live Studio

Join the Street Wear Live group! secondlife:///app/group/4f66c1d7-33bb-3a51-82b3-c1c6f83c62e6/about

Check out the Street Wear Live YouTube Channel!

See you there!

K.T. Burnett and Street Wear Live team (Abbyrose Abbot & Nick Mammoth)


Be the brand. Featured event: “Self-branding and Marketing” forum by Xavier Thiebaud of The A List! at Model’s Workshop

The A-List! & Model's Workshop Self-Branding Forum

When: 2016/08/02 5PM SLT (PDT)

Destination: Model’s Workshop @ Second Life

We’re attending: Model’s Workshop and The A List! present: “Self-branding and Marketing” forum with Xavier Thiebaud

More information: Model’s Workshop in-world group: secondlife:///app/group/0b48687e-b400-6d60-5547-48b114c49c8c/about (copy the link to the local chat in Second Life and press Enter to get the URL to the group profile) | Model’s Workshop website | The A List! in-world group: secondlife:///app/group/c39e50d0-257e-dc11-b31e-14570cadab1a/about

Business is a crucial part of Second Life – we, the residents, either produce content or use it. Therefore it is reasonable to have a conversation about business practices so we all can enjoy and benefit from the growth of certain brands. However, such conversation requires adjustments to the virtual world, which lives by the laws that differ quite significantly from the ones the real world lives by. In some cases of our second lives, we enjoy more freedom than in the physical world, and in some cases, there is less. The Grid also undergoes changes at a much higher rate than the physical world… With all the tools available to residents in the second world, how does one create a brand that lasts?

The A-List! & Model's Workshop Self-Branding Forum

Xavier Thiebaud has taken it upon himself to answer this question. This resident is most known within the Second Life fine crafts industry as the founder of The A List!, the group where selected content creators and event organizers announce the best events one can possibly find on the Grid. He is approaching the 10 years milestone in Second Life, and during most of these years he has been building a brand of himself, his name, along with the brand of The A List!, in the higher society of Second Life. This Tuesday, he has hosted a forum on self-branding and marketing at the Model’s Workshop, a foundation dedicated to assist models of Second Life in a whole variety of ways, and I suggest checking out the “About” page on the Model’s Workshop website for more information about these awesome people.

We have gathered in the Model’s Workshop auditorium and took some time to get acquainted with each other, before Suki of Model’s Workshow went up on the stage where Mr. Thiebaud was already gazing at the audience next to the photography of Steve Jobs along with his famous quote – “Think different”. Ms Rexen took a few minutes to introduce the venue where we have gathered, and then the forum itself has commenced.

The A-List! & Model's Workshop Self-Branding Forum

Starbucks. Versace. Chanel. McDonalds. Mr. Thiebaud included the presentation which began with the logos of these and other companies, asking us whether we can recognize those. Some we could, some we could not. This is unrelated to Second Life, but personally, when I saw the Versace logo, I thought of Perseus, a fictional brand from the Grand Theft Auto universe – I could not recall the name of Versace, the real life brand with Medusa on its logo, but I knew that Rockstar Games, the developers of the GTA universe, mocked Versace that way, by making a brand with the name of Perseus, the Greek mythological hero who defeated Medusa.

Then Mr. Thiebaud has made a remark that branding a company and an individual requires different approach, and then has flipped through the photographs of real life celebrities. Most of the participants have recognized almost all of them. I recognized none of the real ones, but that’s another story. The only one I had recognized was… the avatar of Xavier Thiebaud himself.

Stopping at that one, Mr. Thiebaud said that even though many people on Second Life (higher society in particular, I imagine) know The A List!, not many have heard of Mr. Thiebaud himself prior to actually diving into The A List! – he could “make his name an SL house hold name”, but that was not his focus. However, those who consider branding their name and/or image (for Second Life models, this is all too relevant) have to be ready to put some significant work into it. One of the models asked Mr. Thiebaud about branding name vs. branding image, to which his answer was that “branding a name in SL is easier than an image, particularly because our image changes constantly”. But he has a suggestion to those who still consider to gain recognition by image – and that is adding something to our appearance that separates us from other residents. Cindy Crawford, one of the real life celebrities I did not recognize, has a mole on her face, which has become her trademark. Mr. Thiebaud suggested to cam in to his eyes – supposedly they were electric, and I would be able to say for sure, had he not wear glasses. He sticks to electric eyes, “because [his] personality is electric”, but allows himself the freedom in altering the rest of his appearance. One of the models had recalled that freckles was her brand back when she had started her modeling career in Second Life. All in all, while for models always staying fresh is part of the second routine, they can choose something in their appearance that will not be changed next time they get a new look – and make it their brand!

The second part of the presentation began with Mr. Thiebaud asking the audience about the size of their friends lists and the amount of groups in which they can post. After hearing the answers, he has shared with us his infamous story about the April Fools Day prank he has pulled on The A List! members by sending out a notice which went like “Steve Jobs will be on the Apple Sim in SL and first 5 get a free iPad.”. In his words, “In one minute flat it spread all over the grid, because all our members have groups of their own”. That is when he has realized how powerful the right kind of networking can possibly be. Another story from Mr. Thiebaud on the subject of the power of networking: “I told Suki one year I got all the DJ’s to do a mix of a sample from an old movie called The Warriors and the one message being played all over in all the clubs was 20,000 HARDCORE MEMBERS”. But Mr. Thiebaud suggests finding the right balance between advertising not enough and advertising too much. The A List! does not ever see the same notice appearing more frequently than once a day (and therefore is one of a few entertainment groups for which I myself have not turned the notices off). Ideally, one has to find their own way of balanced advertisement, and that includes the outreach to the public with the message you have got – for Mr. Thiebaud, it had been uniting all the finest of Second Life regardless of the field, with an exception of the adult industry, in one group, so people of all trades had the opportunity to explore the industries of Second Life other than the ones they work in, and “that’s where [they’re] different than the groups in SL”.

Suki Rexen asked a question about picking the right logo – once upon a time, she picked a butterfly as her personal logo and got criticized for that choice, since, supposedly, it has nothing to do with modeling. To which Mr. Thiebaud responded that logo can be anything, and if Ms. Rexen wants to go with a butterfly, that’s exactly what she’s got to do. The point is to assert the ownership of the name, or the image, or the word and let everybody know that it is yours and it will stay yours, however one should choose any of the above wisely, for it is going to stay with one for a long, long time. Mr. Thiebaud reminded the participants once more that one should send a message to the public with their brand, therefore being different, unique, rather than bluntly copying the existing, is the right approach to it. (I can relate to that. The Digitized was started in exactly that spirit – “to cover everything that deserves the coverage, but has not received it”.)

In conclusion, Mr. Thiebaud has summarized the ideas of the controlled marketing. First, he listed the ways one can give the opportunity to others to follow one – basically, all the known social media, an in-world group, and a blog do it. Second, he suggested that one should not neglect the opportunity to help other brands of Second Life, because most of them will help one in return – “it becomes less daunting when people help one another”. Third, he reminded us to watch ourselves and what we share with other users, because reputation plays a tremendous role in how people perceive you and your business. (Anshe Chung, with all her millions, had got a bad reputation not only thanks to the failed CNET in-world interview 10 years ago – all over the Web I can read the stories of the atrocious customer service and the unfair tactics she uses to keep the profits going up. I have never rented from any of the AnsheX lands, and I sure as hell will think a lot before ever renting from them. But that is another story.)

That is where we have ended, now ready to let the world know [insert the forum participant name here] is coming around and it’s better be ready for this. Big thanks to The A List! and Model’s Workshop for organizing this forum and allowing everybody in – there was a lot of information relevant specifically to Second Life (and perhaps even other virtual worlds) on branding, and I myself cannot wait to try out some of the strategies. I hope this summary has been helpful to those who consider branding themselves, but have missed the forum. Thank Xavier Thiebaud if some of the advises turn out useful to you too. I am only re-translating them.

Hair Fair 2016. Brands to consider

Tameless at Hair Fair 2016

As a follow-up of the “Hair Fair 2016 in numbers” article, I give you the list of the stores that happen to be on the higher end in donations or on the lower end in prices. This is not meant to be finger pointing – I base these lists on raw numbers that are actually out there and one can verify them if one is inclined. Just a warning, it takes several hours.

6 brands that donate the biggest percentage:

  1. Zibska – 100%. Booth at Platinum
  2. Gumi’s Bad Box – 90%. Booth at Iridium
  3. lock&tuft (male hair available) – 75%. Booth at Rhodium
  4. Alli&Ali (male hair available) – 50%. Booth at Platinum
  5. *TUKINOWAGUMA* – 50%. Booth at Platinum
  6. [kik] – 50%. Booth at Iridium

Brands that donate the smallest percentage:
About half of them. I do not have to list those – next booth you visit has an almost 50% chance to be one of them.

10 brands with the cheapest small packs:

  1. Gumi’s Bad Box – L$30 per single colour. Booth at Iridium
  2. Tomboi (male only) – L$169 per pack (event only price). Booth at Osmium
  3. Alli&Ali (male hair available) – L$175 per single colour. Booth at Platinum
  4. adoness – L$180 per pack. Booth at Rhodium
  5. The Stringer Mausoleum (male hair available) – L$199 per pack (event only price). Booth at Osmium
  6. [kik] – L$200 per pack. Booth at Iridium
  7. ASO! & Soothe – L$200 per pack (event only price). Booth at Iridium
  8. Hair Studio One (male hair available) – L$200 per pack. Booth at Rhodium
  9. no.match_ (male hair available) – L$200 per pack. Booth at Platinum
  10. TABOU – L$210 per pack (event only price). Booth at Iridium

10 brands with the cheapest middle packs:

  1. Bizarre Hair – L$199 per pack (sale price). Booth at Iridium
  2. Zibska – L$200 per pack. Booth at Platinum
  3. Tameless – L$249 per pack. Booth at Osmium
  4. lock&tuft (male hair available) – L$250 per pack. Booth at Rhodium
  5. Letituier – L$250 per pack. Booth at Iridium
  6. Mello – L$250 per pack. Booth at Platinum
  7. Lovey Dovey – L$260 per pack. Booth at Rhodium
  8. adoness – L$280 per pack. Booth at Rhodium
  9. Exile (male hair available) – L$280 per pack. Booth at Platinum
  10. KoKoLoReS – L$299 per pack. Booth at Platinum

11 brands with the cheapest fat packs:

  1. Zalea – L$280 per pack. Booth at Iridium
  2. Tameless – L$499 per pack. Booth at Osmium
  3. lock&tuft (male hair available) – L$600 per pack. Booth at Rhodium
  4. booN – L$640 per pack. Booth at Platinum
  5. Speakeasy (male hair only) – L$675 per pack (event only price). Booth at Osmium
  6. *TUKINOWAGUMA* – L$750 per pack. Booth at Platinum
  7. Vallani – L$750 per pack (event only price). Booth at Iridium
  8. The Stringer Mausoleum (male hair available) – L$799 per pack. Booth at Osmium
  9. [kik] – L$800 per pack. Booth at Iridium
  10. Wasabi Pills – L$800 per pack (event only price, almost 50% off!). Booth at Osmium
  11. [Decoy Hair] – L$800 per pack. Booth at Iridium

Also, here is the list of my personal high-quality-for-low-price picks. This one is not ordered – do not assume the last to be the least! I am not associated with any of these brands, just would like to spread a word about the good bargain.

Tameless. Donates 25%, middle packs for L$249 per pack, fat packs for L$499 per pack. Booth at Osmium

Since I have discovered Tameless back in 2012, they have not disappointed once with their hairstyles, both mesh and flexi. This year at Hair Fair, Tameless has brought several short hairstyles and a couple of tails – check them out!

Speakeasy. Donates 20%, small packs for L$225, fat packs for L$675. Booth at Osmium

Undercuts are still in, so boys, if that happens to be your thing, you must visit the Speakeasy booth at Hair Fair!

lock&tuft. Donates 75%, middle packs for L$249, fat packs for L$499 per pack. Booth at Rhodium

Boys and girls, are you looking for an original hairstyle with an attitude? Look no further. Discovered by me only this year, lock&tuft offers Hair Fair visitors several hairstyles that make a statement, including those with funky swirls on the back of the head. Have a look!

adoness. Donates 15%, small packs for L$180, middle packs for L$280, fat packs for L$850. Booth at Rhodium

adoness offers several original hairstyles, each of whose evidently requires litres of hairspray, that ladies with an attitude are going to love!

*TUKINOWAGUMA*. Donates 50%, small packs for L$250, middle packs for L$400, fat packs for L$750. Booth at Platinum

Ladies may be interested in the original hairstyles offered by this Japanese brand at Hair Fair, each of whose just screams “summer!” – from cute long ponytails with an optional hairbow, to a gorgeous updo with a hair accessory, to a long flouncy style.

no.match_. Donates 30%, small packs for L$200, natural colours packs for L$650. Booth at Platinum

Ever considered dreadlocks? no.match_ will make you! These beautiful unisex Carribean hairstyles with inbraided accessories will sure make other residents turn heads next time you come to the beach.

Mello. Donates 15%, middle packs for L$250. Booth at Platinum

Great quality hairstyles which can be worn both as the everyday ones and as a part of the fantasy costume, from your regular long hairstyle to cute double buns, all modeled by creepy girls. Check those out, why not!

Exile. Donates 15%, small packs for L$250, middle packs for L$280, fat packs for L$1250. Booth at Platinum

Exile sure has secured its name among Second Life hair creators as a brand that always offers a quality product, and at Hair Fair, offers a pretty sweet deal for its middle packs – both guys and girls can get a hairstyle at this booth that will look good even with the ever-changing quality standards!

That will be it for now. You have got until the end of this week to get yourself some new wigs – hurry up!

Stay digitized and enjoy!