Here are some wonderful hints, tips and advice from a very experienced Hunt Organiser Spooky Mistwallow. She has successfully been organising hunts since since October of 2009. Most of you will be familiar with the Kastle Rock Hunts one of which we are a huge fan of and have been for many years.
Organizing a Hunt
By: Spooky Mistwallow
Before You Start
Think putting a hunt together sounds like a fun idea? It is, but think twice. A successful and well-executed grid wide hunt is a lot of work. Anyone can organize a poorly run hunt. SL has more than its share of these, so please consider your abilities before diving head-first into such an undertaking. As with any job, organizing a grid wide hunt requires a certain commitment, skill set and personal resources. Do you meet the criteria?
ORGANIZATION – You need to have top-notch organizational skills. OCD affliction would be a blessing in this situation. You need to collect, process, and maintain a large amount of information in a very precise manner. You need to be able to develop a system and have the discipline to stick to it no matter how busy or distracted you are.
DEVOTION – You need to be able to put the hunt first. Anytime you have asked others to commit precious time and effort to your promotion it should become a top priority. If you have other interests in SL or in RL that may make it difficult for you to devote all the necessary time, effort, care and patience a hunt and its participants need and deserve, then maybe this is not the right en devour for you.
OTHER SKILLS – Most hunts have a blog. You will need a basic understanding of how to set one up and edit it. You will need a graphics program (Gimp is a good free one) and enough understanding to create a poster for your hunt. Your friend said they’d do it? That’s all fine and good, but if you cant do these things yourself you have no business organizing a hunt. Your friends may or may not come through. NEVER rely totally on others. Create a hunt that you can run alone if needs be.
LEADERSHIP – You will make friends with merchants, then have to tell them no. Sounds simple, but it isn’t. Hunts are not all sweetness and group hugs. People will get impatient with you, challenge your rules, throw fits, make demands, and even get downright nasty. You must be able to handle each situation with professionalism and be able to stand your ground without being confrontational.
So, you’re planning your first hunt. There are some things you’ll need before you announce it to the public.
THEME – The theme is the most fun part of the set-up process and usually what rouses a person to organize their first hunt. It should be whatever you want. Just keep in mind that the theme should be something open to interpretation so that it’s as appealing to a fashion designer as it is to someone who makes flowers or who makes couches or shapes.
POSTER – The sign is usually the first point of contact between you and your would-be hunters. An ugly or boring sign will not attract as many hunters as an interesting, eye-catching sign. Take your time and really do your best with this. Try to think of ways to make it stand out.
RULES & GUIDELINES – Decide what you will and will not accept and write it all out clearly in easy English. List the criteria for a store to be accepted into your hunt. Whether or not merchants will be required to join a group, your allowances for decoys, altering the hunt prim, etc etc. Do not, if you can help it, leave your vendors wondering what’s ok and what’s prohibited.
CAP OR NO CAP – Until you’re a seasoned organizer who knows exactly what they can and cannot handle, you should accept no more than 50 locations.
So, you’ve sent out your application, chosen your stores, sent them your hunt poster, set up a time line, sent group invites… what now?
ADVERTISING – Now is a good time to find additional groups, blogs, magazines and venues to advertise your hunt.
WALKTHROUGH – The walk through is, in my opinion, an obligation. You owe it to the merchants in your hunt to make certain the hunt is organized to the best of your ability. The walk through is a test run, ensuring all locations are still participating, have their settings correct, and the LM in their item goes to the right place.
Many do this differently. Some don’t do it at all and find their hunt is a mess for the first week or longer. Some have it before the hunt starts, some have it as soon as it starts, some have it at the sign, some hidden, some ask for slurl to hiding place, some do the hunt as a hunter would, but you MUST do it. Why? People will move and not tell you. Drop out and not tell you. Have their settings wrong, forget about the hunt, forget their gift and any manner of other error. Merchants are usually hurried, busy people. Some need reminding.
Sadly, a few selfishly don’t care if they cause problems for you or the other merchants in the hunt. Make note of them and take care not to accept them again.
Once your hunt has started, listen to the hunters. If they say there’s a problem go check it out. Make any changes or corrections quickly. Stay on top of landmark changes. Keep your blog updated and you will have an excellent hunt.
Good Luck to all your future Hunt Organisers
from Spooky Mistwallow
We hope this information helped you with your current and future hunts. We would love to say a huge thank you to Spooky for providing this information.
Good Luck organising successful hunts in the future
Jiovi and 2WAT Michigan