Breaking

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sweetpea

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Insurance on breaking? Yes please!

Arena Club recently introduced a new feature, which I feel is really interesting and compelling for some collectors, which I anticipate many will copy.It’s called buyback. Essentially it gives you a guaranteed buyback offer on a hit pack pull should what you receive is below your ‘risk tolerance’ level. It is a form of insurance.
The math on a real example from my purchase.
- $250 slab pack- Buyback cost 10% of the slab pack price, so in this example $25
- Total cost of pack is $275.
- Slab pack is revealed and you can decide to accept the card or accept the buyback offer.In this case,

I took the buyback offer and received $200 back. 

I effectively paid $75 to protect losing more than 80% buy in. Given the pack odds are weighted to cards below buy in, its a clever high margin add on that targets a collectors risk loss thresholds, which in theory is already loaded to the downside. The psychological ‘insurance’ of getting 80% back if you don’t hit what you want is a variation of F2P gaming add on systems of ‘re-rolls’. It would be interesting to see how many of pack purchases also bought the buyback premium. Right now Arena Club limits your ability to activate this to 15 times. Be interesting if they tested making it unlimited, but make the re-roll of each new purchase pack sequentially higher — e.g. on pack 2 open, the premium goes from 10% of slab pack price to say 20%. My gut is that there is a segment that will keep re-rolling at decreasing value given the sunk cost fallacy. If the goal of the system is higher $ per transaction, they should consider progressive cost re-rolls.I expect this mechanic to become more prevalent in hit pack/repacks as this category continues to grow in popularity with collectors looking for a bit more de-risked breaking.

Collectors would you buy the buyback insurance?

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General

Arena Club

Breaking

Breaking Mechanics

Great new feature on Loupe that solves multiple collector segments in a break.

Link preview image for Box-breaking platform Loupe launches 'Collector-to-Collector' buying and selling | cllct

www.cllct.com

Box-breaking platform Loupe launches 'Collector-to-Collector' buying and selling | cllct

Feature is currently available for all Loupe users on IOS, Android and web.

LOVE this. A big quality of life improvement on emergent secondary activity from breaking. Well done! Its a great example of a win win for the initial breaker collector to create liquidity, while allowing others who were not in a break or have a different risk/reward aversion level to participate and convert to a spender, which could help breaker communities.

https://www.cllct.com/sports-collectibles/sports-cards/box-breaking-platform-loupe-launches-collector-to-collector-buying-and-selling

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Wemby /1 Card A Missed Opportunity?

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@BenchMob Thanks for flagging the Wemby /1 card hit.
It got me wondering if this is a missed opportunity by Fanatics/Topps and the hobby. So much potential exists for the collectible space to invest in product, events, and tools to expand their audience beyond its current form.  Right now the Wemby chase is for a very small audience when the appeal would be nearly every collector like hitting the winning lottery ticket. Think of the lost engagement, media exposure and potential conversion of collectors to engage in multiple products. Even the biggest spenders would in theory have a reason to chase lower end product, increasing total spend!

In its current form, the NYY spot in PYT Dynasty Cases were well over $1k. The pretty much eliminates many from participating in this chase, which clearly would have pop culture mass appeal. There is a lot of missed engagement by not looking at it from a tiered system. For example, buy in low end products for chaser spots into the say Chrome, to then get into Sapphire, to then get into Icons, to then get into Dynasty. Or golden tickets in retail Target boxes. This gives, in theory anyone a chance to participate. The size of interest would be much bigger and hitting that card even a bigger cultural event.

But this would require Fanatics to think about it on a more programmatic level to think out the system where it involves breakers to participate. In my opinion, there is likely a massive opportunity to create “real time” content / reality TV by investing in tools, systems, and co-funded dollars for Breakers to incentivize this event. But imagine if there was such a programming involved where it was planned out with breakers and inserts into all their tiered products to create a pathway for someone buying a retail hobby box for under $30 and hit a ticket, that eventually gets into a Dynasty Break where they got NYY spot and hit Wemby. This would hit global level awareness and likely have people who don’t even like breaking to participate on a level like Lottery jackpots that hit over $1Bn.

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What Sport Breakers Can Learn from Pokemon Breakers

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TCG and more specifically Pokemon streams on Whatnot are just different.
Bigger Pokemon streamers on Whatnot tend to have 3-5x the size of viewers vs the most popular sports card breakers. I wanted to know why if it’s just the interest is larger and accounts for it? The volume of cards being submitted for grading would indicate that where the number of TCG (mostly Pokemon) being submitted for grading is as large as Basketball, Soccer, Football and baseball combined on a given month.

But once you go into the streams, you will se a very big difference vs. the sports breakers.
Sport breakers, while the breaks are done differently, which could account for it, but the viewers and chat have a very different vibe — its for solitary in that folks are generally hoping they get the hot card or spot and silently hoping everyone else misses.

Contrast that to Pokemon streams you have a vibe of community and communal positivity. Nearly everyone is sending luck emojis on a break or congratulating nice hits or welcoming new entrants to the stream.
But while I do think there is an element of the TCG community that is inherently more inclusive, I think a lot has to be attributed to the breaker and their tactics. For one, you will notice a big part of their streams contains three key elements:

* A program or schedule of what is happening and when — this sets expectations and trains certain cohorts to tune in or pay attention to the things they are interested in — they also program free giveaways every 5 minutes in the case of the breaker I highlight in the screen shot.

Source: Whatnot/Krakenhits

* Giveawys — While this isn’t unique to TCG breakers, but what the giveaways are very different than other category breakers. The big difference is that the giveaways are of value — value where anyone in the stream would consider winning a giveaway as a BIG HIT — so anyone watching in the stream can have a chance at a free giveaway but one that is A HIT and in a similar payoff as anyone purchasing or is a whale — THIS IS KEY

Source: Whatnot/Ryans_cardhouse

* Allow anyone to purchase a giveaway to give to the community — The key to the last point is that the giveaway is driven by the community and by fellow viewers. I think this is a big differentiator because it allows those who can’t spend or spend at the levels of some bigger spenders to “have a chance” to experience the higher end breaks. For the purchasers, they get shout outs and community recognition. This is often times in the form of two methods: a) Name up on a wall and b) requests by moderators (this is also another key point that I’ll address later) to follow the generous gifted so that they can build a following — I’m sure there is a psychological motivation for this behavior that others can break down, but this is clearly a big driver for whales to buy $25- 3000 product to giveaway.

Source: Whatnot / Krakenhits

* Agency for the community / Role of Moderators — The standard is tipping, but there are two differences here vs Sports breaks. In sports breaks its usually done when a person hit big, similar to how its customary to tip your dealer in Vegas when you hit big. The difference here is the community can select ways to tip, and its mostly in buying product for the moderators who are volunteers, They are viewers just like everyone else but have an elevated role in that they have powers and a special icon — they provide a valuable service in helping the breaker answer questions, keep folks in line, reinforcing rules and are part emcee and cheerleader. They are quasi working for the breaker but non-paid, but what is unique is that viewers can buy product for the moderators (see Image below).
That results is a highly active stream that is a mixture of purchases, gives aways, and content creation driven by the viewers. But perhaps the biggest pull for viewers is that viewers are trained that by viewing a stream and staying around for hours, one has a chance to win and get a big hit. So it hits on the classic dichotomy of Too much time, too little money vs having money, but little time. The TCG breakers are either directly or indirectly deploying systems to drive their viewership and what likely be a core KPI for streaming collectibles — Revenue / minute & Engagement actions / minute.

* They provide a revenue system to allow spenders to buy giveaway product for the community which provides value for those who can spend hours in stream, but rewards the spenders with their name on a wall for the stream to get recognition--and therefore 'remain in the stream' via the wall shout out even though they left the stream.

Source: Whatnot / Ryans_cardhouse

* For the non spenders, they create viewers for content to be created by spenders and the breakers to engage via moderators to build a fun engagement chat--and rewarded by potential giveaways of product they value.
* The moderators are rewarded by being the glue between these two cohorts by getting the opportunity for free product.

Source: Whatnot / Ryans_cardhouse

* It’s a nice balance that results in bigger viewership and likely higher than sport card breakers Rev/Min or Eng/Min.
I feel this is going to be a key vector for collectibles broadly — the role of community as the “hub” to harness the viewers to perform tasks, thus creating the content to drive further engagement and spend. The Pokemon breakers have found systems that appear to be functioning, in my view, that incentives both spenders and non spenders to work together and reward one another. I feel much more should go into building community creation tools and giving rewards to encourage both cohorts, which will result in higher viewers and ultimately spend.

Would love to hear your thoughts on this!

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