Wednesday, January 8, 2014

State of the Break

For the past two months I've been pushing for folks to sign up for the charity break I'm hosting to benefit the children in the Philippines who desperately need help following Typhoon Haiyan. Unfortunately, my efforts haven't been very successful. Seven (now eight) kind folks have signed up so far, but I need a little more less than twice that to move forward. Last week I sent out 40 PWE's with a note asking folks to consider signing up, and got zero responses. That was disheartening. I know that the card community is extremely generous when they can be, so I want to know what I can do to make this break work. For starters, 2013 Topps Series 1 &2 were replaced by:
1999 Topps Stadium Club Series 1

1997 Topps Stadium Club Series 2

Thanks to Steve at the Baseball Card Exchange for making that possible! Take a look at the lineup now, if that isn't worth the entry fee then I don't know what is. To top it off, Steve tossed in some awesome loose packs!

The next person to sign up is going to get one of the packs of Topps '52 thrown in. (UPDATE: Play at the Plate stepped up and grabbed it! Next person to sign up will also get a pack since Brian was lightning fast!) The rest will be given away as door prizes during the break, and that Bowman fat pack will likely be part of the break itself.

What I really need is advice. If you are interested or aren't interested in joining the break, please tell me what I can do to get you to sign up. Is the price too high? Are the products not good enough? What can I do to fill this thing up so I don't have to keep the people waiting who signed up waiting any longer?

I'm putting a sign up deadline for February 1st, with the break happening the week after. If I haven't hit 15 teams claimed, I'll refund the money of those who signed up and take a shot to the heart.

11 comments:

  1. I feel your pain. I tried hosting a break to benefit the Wounded Warriors project and got nowhere. I think the problem is the time of year. People are starting to save their money for 2014 product (2014 Topps Series 1 streets in two weeks)...other than that, I have no explanation. I didn't sign up because I don't have the money. Maybe everyone else is just as poor as me.

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    1. That's my fear too. I thought doing it this time of year would be a benefit since there aren't many releases, but it looks like most folks just don't have any money budgeted for cards in January. I can't blame them. I know that people will sign up if they're able to financially and it makes sense, so I just have to find out how to make that possible for more folks like yourself.

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  2. I'm in. Commented on the other post.

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  3. Since I'm not really a team collector, I usually balk at group breaks (your Prizm 2012 is still the only one I've ever been in). I recently signed up a '14 Gypsy Queen break at My Cardboard Addiction and grabbed the Dodgers and Yanks, as those are the best bets for hits/trade bait. If they were already taken, I would have likely passed. Another reason I signed up was because you can sign up first.. then when it's filled, you pay. I'm sure I'm not alone when I say your break scares people away because you're requesting payment right away, and people are doubting the slots will all be filled. You might try saying "ok, everybody sign up first, then pay when we're good to go." I bet you'd have more luck with that. Maybe throw in some new (2014) product too, to cash in on the hype. Old cards are less "sexy" generally speaking. I'm by no means an expert on group breaks, but just trying to be helpful since you're a good guy and this is a great thing you're trying to do. Best of luck with it!

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    1. That's a really good point on the payment scaring folks off. I need to be more clear that if someone wants to claim a team but can't pay now, then that's fine, we'll work it out. The reason I asked for payment up front is so that I can order the boxes since I don't have the money in the bank to to place the order with my own funds. The break was initially a spur of the moment plan after the Tyhpoon, or I would have budgeted better. I can see why folks would be nervous. Tossing in a 2014 box is a great idea too, if I can get a good deal on a Series 1 box then we'll use that to replace something. I hear you on old cards being less sexy, but with a mixer break it's tough to keep it fresh. My goal was to offer something for everyone.

      Again, if you want a team but can't pay today, please email me, I totally understand! If it isn't filled by February 1st, folks will get their entry fee sent back.

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  4. It's the time of year for me. First it was the holidays. Now it's the aftermath and so many other issues (most weather related). I don't do a lot of group breaks, but I want to make an exception for this one because it's a good cause. I don't care about the cards available or the price -- but the timing is a major issue, I don't think I could do something like this until the end of the month or even mid-February. (March is another terrible month so don't push it back til then!)

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  5. Since I'm a set collector, I don't do group breaks, but if I did this would be the worst time of the year for me. Christmas, plus winter in the Northeast, and my birthday is in February (car registrations, inspections (I have two vehicles), etc.) leaves me very little money for fun.

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    1. That's true, I hadn't even thought about how group breaks only appeal to team collectors.

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  6. For what it's worth, if you add 2014 product I hope you don't subtract anything. Now that the 2013 (non-mini) Topps is out, there's nothing I'd like to see cut from the lineup. Wish we had the funds to sign up for a third team, but frankly didn't have the scratch for the two we took. Also, for what it's worth, I can be very patient. I REALLY want to see this one happen, and I don't mind waiting as long as it takes to get done.

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    1. I agree, I don't want to lose any more boxes either. If we have a strong sign-up push then I'd probably just throw the 2014 box in. Maybe instead of a hobby box I'd get a blaster or a couple hangers. We only need 6 teams now to hit 15, so I'm positive we can do it. I plan to pay for a team too, but I don't want to claim any teams that someone else might want.

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  7. Have faith, keep promoting it (daily reminder posts/updates) I'm considering, give me a 8 days and I will know whether I can spare the bucks this month. BTW I would be claiming the Braves.

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