Like @Eric_Inovelli said, we’re super excited for you all to have input in the projects we are rolling out. I think this rewards program in particular could be really cool! How about some free Inovelli gear at a certain number of points?
That would take a lot of points. Inovelli gear is less expensive than most comparable Z-wave devices (and some Zigbee and WiFi devices ), but it’s not a Big Mac either. Not that it wouldn’t work—a night at a Marriott isn’t cheap either—but it might be nice to have smaller things to redeem rewards for too (other than color paddles ).
Another thought: you have beta testing—both closed betas for new devices and open betas for firmware. For closed betas I could see “gold” (or whatever your upper teir is called; maybe “Red Series” ) folks getting to the front of the beta tester queue. For both closed and especially open betas, perhaps points for bug reporting? More points for reproducible example and/or analysis (or whatever else helps the engineers fix the bug and/or the community work around it) than for a simple “I did this and it didn’t work” report…
With the second generation devices, I’m excited to see Inovelli focusing on what I see as your core competencies—really awesome switches—for which there is nothing comparable on the market. (Yeah, smart bulbs too, Illumin is pretty cool…) I can’t wait to see what comes out of R&D in the next year or so… And I think a program like this might help get the word out to new potential customers.
Those are some great ideas! I’m excited to connect our rewards program to community engagement because I do think finding bugs or items that help our developers would be point worthy Thanks for your input!
@Eric_Inovelli@Brianna_Inovelli your thoughts about reaching new households with a rewards program got me thinking about my own case. My home automation journey really ought to be its own post, but for an anecdote, the money you spent on Amazon “sponsored” placement worked: before I got into Z-Wave I was buying Kasa switches, and Amazon kept suggesting Inovelli gear.
That was just the brand exposure, of course. What followed was more important: eventually I went to your website, read about what the switches could do, read about the company and its goals, and liked what I saw. I started to imagine how these switches would play out in my house, and realized that I had a few tricky use cases.
What finally won me over was the support: I thought about the most difficult use case in my house: a virtual three-way between lights on two different circuits, where two-way sync would be needed. I had some ideas about this and opened a ticket… and got a response the same day from @Eric_Inovelli basically saying that it was an interesting question and deferring to @EricM_Inovelli who had the complete answer within a couple of days. I don’t know how you folks manage such great support, with responses from the founders to customer inquiries, but I was impressed.
I still haven’t implemented that solution because the Red Series dimmers were out of stock, but I will soon. My first shipment of Red Series dimmers, unfortunately, needs to go towards replacing Black Series dimmers: for WAF reasons I need double-tap up to turn on the dimmer to 100%, like Maestro does, and that requires a Central Scene command (I wish it didn’t: see Post 4754). After that, my next shipment can go to the hallway that inspired my query and Inovelli’s great response…
I just saw that my first shipment of Red Series dimmers has been delivered. I’m so excited to install them this weekend!
I can speak for Eric and myself when I say I’m happy to hear our Amazon sponsored posts worked! We hope people like you in our community will be able to welcome new members as they join through the rewards program. I continue to learn new things about our products from this community, we all know how special this space is. Let us know how setup goes, it sounds like a great weekend activity!
NOTE: I know this question will come up so here goes lol – people who have purchased products before the rewards program rolls out will receive points for their past purchases (from Jan 1st, 2020 to present), but those points will expire within a certain period of time (TBD). All future points accumulated will not have an expiration date.
It might be worth avoid this. It can devalue the reviews - even if they are actually legitimate. It may make people question if they were done for the “reward” or because they really feel that way about the product.
I think the biggest concern, is that a financial reward will push some people to jump through the program hoops for the sake of the reward. IE post a lot of reviews that don’t really say much, answer a lot of forum questions with barely-acceptable answers, etc.
I do very much like the idea of an incentive for people who drive the community and create a lot of good content. I am just encouraging caution to avoid unexpected negative results.
This is especially true with an affiliate program- you don’t want to find Inovelli affiliate spam causing problems on other websites. And if half the recommendations online to buy Inovelli carry an affiliate link, that may end up reducing the brand’s credibility as it could be viewed like a MLM program.
I’m just saying- as you create the problem, be always thinking ‘how will a moron abuse this’.
Your MVPs are contributing community developers. The people contributing firmware updaters that don’t make me want to throw my computer off the roof (thanks @bcopeland), the people writing web tools that makes writing notifications at all reasonable (thanks @nathanfiscus), the people that have contributed features to the drivers (thanks @npk22, jdmar3, etc). Contributing code, platform, scripts, glue should net you the most win. In my mind that’s the best contribution you can make as an enthusiast. You build the whole ecosystem. I wouldn’t be able to do any of my Inovelli->Hubitat->Google shenanigans right now without a bunch of user-contributed code filling in the gaps. I suspect a lot of us are in the same boat.
After that your most useful people are the ones who make the tutorials, FAQs, and reliably answer questions. Pet peeve, though: I hate seeing this summarized as “unboxing videos”. Those are for children, I want a summary of features and specs and an independent and unbiased review. Review videos with honest demonstrations of capabilities I am interested in, with the right technical details, are quite valuable to me.
I strongly support your idea to incentivize solving forum topics.
Since you have the sales records already, it would be nice to get retroactive points for purchases that were made through inovelli.com in the past.
You might consider tying the forum software’s Badges and Groups functionality in with the rewards program (in both directions).
I can totally understand your thinking here. We want to create opportunities for customers to earn points but not have too many options that are too easy to achieve. The nice thing about reviews is in places like Google and Facebook, you can only leave a review once. I think having our lower tier options like following our social pages would be the ones people would do first, but higher tiered actions like answering a question in our community or making a video showcasing your products would be harder for people to achieve without actually engaging with us. Great ideas from everyone so far!
We do plan on offering some retroactive points just to highlight since a few of you have brought it up. I think Eric mentioned above they would be from purchases made from Jan 1st, 2020 to present and that the points will have an expiration date.