Congratulations! You’ve decided you’d like to join and become active in a guild. The first step is actually joining, naturally. If the guild is not private, you will be able to see the guild’s front page. Just click ‘Join Guild’ under ‘Options’ to join. If the guild is private, neomail the owner asking for an ‘invite’. If you are sent this, it will include a link to the guild, and you will be able to join.
Now that you have successfully joined, you may be confused with the links on the main page. At the top is the council; this is composed of 5 members. Underneath this will be your rank, there are 5 ranks you can achieve. Each guild has separate requirements for each rank. Below this is the options section, and a link to home. You will then see the link ‘Messages’. This will lead you to a message board, where you can introduce yourself, and get to know others in the guild.
Next comes the calendar, most guilds encourage members to add things such as birthdays and holidays to this. After this is the member list, use this to find new friends! You can use the invite option to invite other friends if you enjoy the guild, though some restrict it to admin only. Finally, a direct link to the guild is given.
Underneath this, there most likely will be a poll. It may merely be an opinion, or for a competition. Feel free to vote!
Next you’ll see the guild’s stats, the pageviews, member number, messages number, and when it was founded. If you have admin, it will be below this.
After joining a guild, explore the links on the front page. If they have a website or ‘webbie’, make sure to read everything, especially the rules! If there are activities, participate in them! Most of all, have fun.
Making a Guuld!
You’ve seen those guilds. They seem to shine with a light from within, even before your mouth drops at their members and messages. Something inside you envies for such a chance to make others feel this way. What does this require you ask? The answer is simply one word: work. It can be done, just read on.
The first step takes place even before the guild is created, that is, picking a theme. A first and foremost rule is to try to choose one that does not already exist. Look around the guild boards, and see what guilds are being advertised. Try combining two themes, if they are not opposite. (One exception to this rule is Neo Related guilds. These have so many possibilities your guild can become truly unique even with a common theme) A great way to choose is to consider what you and your friends enjoy, however make sure it isn’t too specific. For instance, you wouldn’t want to do the Asparagus Lover’s Club when you could do the Green Vegetable Lover’s Club. A large number of people will be fond of a broader theme. Make sure your neighborhood fits with your theme. A great way to get noticed at first is to choose a neighborhood that is less crowded, as it will take fewer members to bring you nearer the top.
Next, a good layout is in order. These make the first impression and are central to an excellent guild. A large turnoff is bright clashing colours. Try softer blues, greens, or pinks. If you choose to add a background, do not pick one that dances or is animated in any way. (I don’t care how cute it is, giving potential members a headache before the can join is never good) Another essential part of a great layout is its loading time. If your computer cannot load it in less than 30 seconds to a minute depending on your computer speed, try to loose some images. A premade layout is a great starter for most guilds. Search around the guild boards and you should find a good site. After your guild reaches 10-20 members, it’s time to move onto a non-premade layout. If you were not blessed with layout-making skills, ask around the guild boards. It may take time, but you will hopefully find someone nice enough to make one for you. You will need to have ready what you want on your layout. Make sure all of your links are easily accessible, as well as readable. Council blogs and daily links are popular.
Although a layout is important, another important aspect is your friendliness. If you have both your neomail and neofriend requests blocked, it does not send a good impression. When a new member joins, try to send them a welcome neomail if you are still small. If they post on the board, welcome them warmly. This will make them much more likely to stay and tell their friends.
Members have started to slowly join because you your super spiffy layout. ‘Now what?’ you ask. Though guilds are great for just chatting, members want something to do, as in activities. These will become more and more important as your guild grows. Contests are not allowed by Neopets, but competitions are. In contests, you offer Neopets prizes in return for winning or participation. Competitions however, have no prize clearly offered. Instead, you can offer ranks up or perhaps an image saying they were a winner for their lookup. To choose this winner, the members can vote in the guild poll. Other activities can be things such as spotlights, where no official winner is chosen, but members can enjoy others’ work. It is best for these to not be placed on the layout, as it clutters. Instead, try placing it on a non-used pet’s page. This is great, as non-Neopets links are not allowed on guilds.
As you advertise on the guild board, you pop over to a few other guilds. They have many members, and offer giveaways. Oh! Bright idea you think. *light bulb pops up* Not so fast. Neopets does not allow giveaways, as they can be a scam. I understand your generosity, and you can randomly pick members and give them items. However, you may not display or post it in any form. A great way to look generous is 1 NP auctions. Just accept guild members as your neofriend and they will be able to receive the items for almost free. When other users see these auctions through searches, they will be more apt to join your guild.
As more members begin to pour in, the standards held on activeness go up. This means, if your guild has only 10 members, users do not expect 1,000 messages. However, if your guild has 200 members, it should not have only 10 messages. The more active your guild looks, the more likely people are to join. A great way to promote activeness like thinking is ‘bashes’. This means designate a time such as 6:00 PM NST on Friday in which members should try to be online. Post it on the guild’s front page. These can be quite fun, and tend to run late. Don’t be disappointed however if your first one is a drag, try a different time instead. Soon messages will be flowing!
Another extra that larger guilds like to have is a webbie, or website. They often contain guides, graphics, and guild links. Some chose to host these on pet’s page, but when you find yours growing, ask around the guild boards for a good host. Website layouts can be premade, but once again as around the boards for a nice person to make you one if possible. The same general rules apply for website layouts as guild layouts. Don’t forget – You will have to link to the website from a pet’s page as non-Neopets links are not allowed in guilds.
Finally, a major choice most guilds decide at one point or another is whether to go private. When choosing, make sure you have enough active members to keep the guild going, as well as a way to gain new members. For instance, if your guild is a battledome themed guild and you decide to go private, make a pet’s page with the stat requirements and a way for prospective members to contact you.
In conclusion, there are many different aspects to creating a successful guild. A unique theme, great layout, and friendly council and members are good starters. Continue to add on with activities, organized bashes, and a website. Throughout all this, continue advertising on the guild boards and in your shop. Consider taking out a noticeboard add to increase awareness. Good luck to all future spectacular guild leaders!