I forgot to set up notifications for updates on the topic, so am just reading all the responses now.
To be honest, I think that I'm unlikely to win any prizes for the regularity of my posting on the forum. However, I'm not sure if I see the value of that approach.
I think that I see benefit in that it gives you guys another option of a kilt store with a relatively large range of products, where you get a reasonable discount. I appreciate that as afreegreek mentions, there is a relatively limited pool of manufacturers in our industry, therefore some of the products we sell can be found on other people's sites, but also some of them cannot.
I also think that it gives everyone in the forum an opportunity to interact with me in a public place, and I see value in that. As with our Trustpilot service we're keen to be as open and honest about what we do as possible, as I believe that we provide great service.
From my personal point of view, as a forum member, I'm not sure that I would want myself (or other business owners) heavily involved in my conversations. I think that my position means that I'm inclined to sell myself and degrade my competitors (though I don't do that). If I was doing this solely for business then I'm certainly incentivised to do so.
Therefore I think that in my opinion, a good thriving forum is about the members having discussions, not the businesses promoting themselves. I think that business owners provide a valuable addition to that, to get involved in conversations that relate to them, or to provide expert advice when called upon.
From that point of view I'm happy to fulfil that role - be available should anyone want to discuss anything, and I'm also happy to extend the suggested discount of 10% to any member regardless of our status as an official merchant.
Let me know your thoughts on that. Perhaps I misunderstand the role of being a more involved member?
In response to specific comments:
@KiltedTexan - well you know, some people like to wear something under their kilts! We're actually just about to publish a piece on what people wear under their kilts so would love some feedback on what people do wear under them!
@afreegreek - Unfortunately we're in a relatively niche industry, so the number of manufacturers is relatively limited. We try to work with as wide a range as possible, and as a result, we do have some products that are not readily available in other stores. However, I also think that controversy of imitation items over the last few years has spurred on many manufacturers to innovate and we regularly see companies coming out with new designs and new styles as a result.
@treenutt - I was as surprised as you! I went to join yesterday and it said I was already a member! I don't recall joining the first time and didn't have a note of the login details in my Passpack account so had to request the username/password. Perhaps consider yesterday as my real date of joining?