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New AFOL Survey

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Re: New AFOL Survey

Postby legodavee123 » Thu Jul 07, 2011 10:52 am

Daz Hoo wrote:See what I mean? [...] We were willing to give our time, and all we wanted was a little financial effort from LEGO Canada.


I guess I just don't see it. We don't decide whether or not to do public or charitable events based on what we expect to get from LEGO, we decide to do them based on our resources and time. We turn down various opportunities because we simply can't support them-- some of which are also referred to us by LEGO. We don't expect LEGO's help, and typically don't ask for it (sometimes we have), and when we HAVE asked, we haven't gotten much.

Honestly, we often feel like asking LEGO for support is, well, unwarranted. If every LUG asked for support for every show, charity fundraiser, display, or event that they help put on, LEGO would (I expect) get inundated with bunches of requests all over the place. Heck, I expect they ALREADY feel pretty inundated-- I don't even want to imagine how many scads of events LUGs do all across North America.

Daz Hoo wrote:So to hear that other club members do get perks just for participating in events organized and led by LEGO (with all of its ressources) is kind of frustrating.


There's a difference I didn't see you mention before, and I think it's important: "events organized and led by LEGO". LEGO as a company has a whole team of people handling logistics for events that they help lead. They know what they can handle and what they can't handle, and that's why LEGO doesn't volunteer to show up to every single local charitable fundraiser everywhere on the map. There's just WAYYYY to many of them for LEGO to donate their resources to. They select certain events to participate in (or lead), and they try to bite off only what they can chew.

Obviously, I don't know all the details, but I believe what often happens (when LEGO refers someone to you) is that they're trying to find a way to politely decline their own participation. If some random high school in Massachusetts decided to have a fundraiser for a local charity, and wanted to have a LEGO theme, they might ask the LEGO Company for help. But LEGO can't commit to showing up and supporting the event, so instead of giving a flat-out "No", they say "Well, WE can't, but there are some guys in NELUG that might be able to help you out." And mostly, that means the burden of saying "No" now passes to us (unless it works for us).

[edit]One other point is that LEGO often offers AFOLs perks for volunteering because we're cheap like that. LEGO could jump through some hoops and hire people to help work an event-- but that means getting tax information for a bunch of people, or finding a reputable staffing agency that can do it, and it means paying money, which is difficult. It's much cheaper if you can find some AFOLs who are willing to work for a discount, or some freebie LEGO that they were going to throw out anyway.[/edit]

So, here's the question-- are you disappointed because you see other LUGs getting support for events that they lead, and are NOT lead or participated in by LEGO? Because that's something I haven't seen very much of at all. I see a lot of perks being given out when LEGO leads an event, but I very rarely see LEGO step up and support an event in which they don't take part.

DaveE
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Re: New AFOL Survey

Postby Daz Hoo » Thu Jul 07, 2011 11:36 am

Short answer: yes.

Like I mentioned, I do know that some European clubs (PLUG and FreeLUG to name them, anyway it's clearly visible in their anual briefs to their members) do get support from their local LEGO representative in the form of perks for club members and goodies to give away to the public in many events that are led by the clubs themselves, and not by LEGO. Their representatives seemed to have realized how important those club events are in terms of visibility, and they seemed to incorporate them into their overall marketing strategies for their region.

Over here, well, like you said, it would seem that our club is now just a polite way to say "no" to event organizers while also being a perfect excuse not to organize anything in our neck of the woods "because the guys of QuéLUG are taking care of things in Quebec".

You wanna know what the worst part is? The few perks our club did get from LEGO over the recent years weren't from the LEGO Canada representative, but from Steve Witt because we knew each other from this site...

Like I answered in LEGO's survey, it all seems to depend on who you know in the company, and although I understand that things cannot be equal all the time everywhere, some standardizations of the practises and policies might be beneficial both for the clubs and for LEGO's marketing.
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Re: New AFOL Survey

Postby legodavee123 » Thu Jul 07, 2011 1:03 pm

Daz Hoo wrote:[...]I do know that some European clubs [...] do get support from their local LEGO representative in the form of perks for club members and goodies to give away to the public in many events that are led by the clubs themselves, and not by LEGO.


OK-- I guess I just don't really see it as a problem. Maybe I'd see it as more of a problem if, say, most clubs EXCEPT ours got such perks. But my experience pretty much matches yours insofar as not receiving much if any support from LEGO.

Daz Hoo wrote:The few perks our club did get from LEGO over the recent years weren't from the LEGO Canada representative, but from Steve Witt because we knew each other from this site...


Like I answered in LEGO's survey, it all seems to depend on who you know in the company[/quote]

Yeah, I find that that's true. The company as a whole doesn't have any heavily enforced policies about handing out perks, so it just depends on who you're dealing with, and how generous and available they are. IIRC, way back in the early 2000's, LEGO actually fired the manager of the LEGO outlet store in the DC area for being a little TOO generous to AFOLs!

DaveE
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