Newsletter #277

Newsletter #277 - July 29, 2015

Obtaining Critical Mass

>>> Obtaining Critical Mass >>>

Pure and simple, everything about ActiveCaptain is a numbers game. At first, few people used the marina and anchorage data because there were only a few reviews. But once there was a good database of reviews, the raw information became incredibly valuable. And with that value came more people using it who then generated more reviews and updated more data.

This ever-increasing power generation is similar to the way that atomic bombs work. And while those words put into an email newsletter going out to hundreds of thousands of people will likely make an analyst at NSA look into ActiveCaptain themselves today, it's important to recognize that reaching critical mass is what it takes to make an unusual capability like ActiveCaptain.

We are at the moment of truth for ActiveCaptain Services which resides within eBoatCards. It has not reached critical mass by any means. It's still very young and to be honest, it has already surpassed the results we saw at this age with ActiveCaptain. But we should be doing better because we have a very large base of users already.

We are told so often how ActiveCaptain has changed cruising. Now you have exceptional information to guide your destinations from place to place. Well those exact same new capabilities are possible with all the boating services you use every season. If you want the services to improve, the community must point out the great services and the poor ones. Nothing will make a bigger impact to your own future experiences.

We continue to make tweaks to the software to make it easier to use. A new capability was just turned on allowing you to see a summary of all services a business provides. Some yards might have great bottom painting capabilities but fall short with carpentry. The new summary section will put it all together in one place.

To see an example, we took our previous bottom painting experience at Sadler Point Marine Center in Jacksonville and broke it up into 6 different, smaller reviews for Bottom Painting, Haul Out, Painting, Mechanical, Carpentry, and AC/Heating. When we get hauled out for bottom painting, there are often a variety of other smaller tasks that are done too. Here's Sadler's record for bottom painting which shows the new summary for all the other services they also provide:

You'll notice they have a lot of single reviews in the different categories - all of them are ours right now. Note too that clicking on any service category in the summary jumps directly to their record for that service. So it's easy to see what others think and easy to navigate around to learn more about the business.

Let's jump start these service reviews. Bottom painting is something that all of us do every few years. Go find the places where you last had it done and review the experience in the different categories. Try to keep the review for a single service focused on just that service. That will give you the information you need when you are looking for a service in the future.

Work with us to achieve critical mass. Right now there are only about 1,000 reviews in these services, heavily tilted to the Boat Brokers category. There appears to be a lot that boaters have to say about boat brokers!

Our experience with ActiveCaptain tells us that we need 40,000 reviews. At that point, we won't have to ask for reviews - you'll be getting so much information and you'll be adding to it naturally. You'll then wonder how you did without it.

Please write a handful of reviews today for bottom painting and the other services associated with bottom painting. We'll report on the results next week.

>>> Defender 1st >>>

Watch this spot every week in the emailed newsletter for the Defender 1st special promotion. To sign up for the newsletter, create a new ActiveCaptain account at:

...or log into the ActiveCaptain website and select My Account at the top right of the page and make sure the Newsletter checkbox is checked.

Remember - Defender 1st: one product, one week, one incredible price.

When you're thinking about purchasing boating supplies, think of Defender first.

Dylan and Dee Dee are short timers here in Castine with their time in Maine quickly slipping away. They have been weathering many changes this summer as we all prepare to leave our land-based home behind. But soon they will be back onboard ready to find their next adventure. You can look in on their final week as landlubbers by checking out their blog:

Karen and Jeffrey Siegel
Castine, Maine
sharing the experience
Social Navigation for Active Captains

Newsletter Archive
We are currently merging the different ActiveCaptain websites into a single website.

Because of this, all later newsletters are being only put onto the ActiveCaptain Help Center found here:
ActiveCaptain Help Center : Newsletters

Older newsletters will be duplicated here until these pages are removed.

2016-03-02 #308 - Unexpected Benefits
2016-02-24 #307 - UK's MCA
2016-02-17 #306 - Chartplotter Support Questions
2016-02-10 #305 - One Giant Leap
2016-02-03 #304 - Bahamas Internet
2016-01-27 #303 - Community Anchoring
2016-01-20 #302 - Sharing Your Identity
2016-01-13 #301 - ActiveCaptain is...
2016-01-06 #300 - MMXVI
2015-12-30 #299 - The Power of Sharing
2015-12-23 #298 - Joyful times
2015-12-16 #297 - Thoughts of Cuba
2015-12-09 #296 - The Power of Love
2015-12-02 #295 - Windyty
2015-11-25 #294 - Mary Had a Little Lamb
2015-11-18 #293 - DeLorme inReach
2015-11-11 #292 - Celebrating Furuno
2015-11-04 #291 - Your ActiveCaptain Identity
2015-10-28 #290 - iPad/Android Tablet Owners
2015-10-21 #289 - The Top 5 Things...
2015-10-14 #288 - Skype
2015-10-07 #287 - Locations 1.2
2015-09-30 #286 - Cell Phone Frequency Issues
2015-09-23 #285 - Cell Phone Unlocking
2015-09-16 #284 - Mr SIM Card
2015-09-09 #283 - Route Storage & Sharing Continued
2015-09-02 #282 - Route Storage & Sharing
2015-08-26 #281 - Here's What You Told Us
2015-08-19 #280 - Bahamas 2016
2015-08-12 #279 - What is Services Missing?
2015-08-05 #278 - Aqua Map for Android
2015-07-29 #277 - Obtaining Critical Mass
2015-07-22 #276 - Our Backup Anchor
2015-07-15 #275 - Which Anchor is Best
2015-07-08 #274 - Pocket Mariner's SeaNav
2015-07-01 #273 - Services Galore
2015-06-24 #272 - Canvas and Upholstery Services
2015-06-17 #271 - Locations, Locations, Locations
2015-06-10 #270 - Keeping Track of Everything - 4

Archive Complete list of all newsletters
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