SL Entrepreneur Profiles: Sachi Vixen, Designer/Owner of Adam n Eve

July 2nd, 2008  |  Published in SL Entrepreneur Magazine, SL Entrepreneur Profiles  |  1 Comment

By Sigmund Leominster, News Editor
Earlier this month, Linden Lab® announced that it had replaced their old default avatars with a new set designed by Second Life® residents. When new SL™ client users register for the first time, they will be able to choose from 16 different avatars. The designers chosen to develop these are Adam n Eve, Nylon Pinkney, Grendel’s Children, Wraith Unsung, and Renegade Clothing,
Hoping to uncover why these designers were chosen over many others, I talked with Sachi Vixen, a three-year veteran of Second Life who owns Adam n Eve.

Sachi Vixen, Second Life Designer and owner of Adam n Eve

What began as a brief introductory question turned into an interesting discussion about in-world business. Sachi was very open with her comments and made some insightful observations.
I asked about her first encounter with Second Life and whether she initially joined to make money.
“Not at all. I knew some people who were exploring SL and they said check it out. I came and loved it. Then I saw all the possibilities and I started to make some things. Initially it was to fund my shopping – making things so I would have money to buy other items. But I loved making things and I liked the thrill of others enjoying them and actually buying them. I had no design background and came here with no Photoshop®. But I’m fairly intelligent and I pick things up quickly when I am focused.
“I have a business partner, Damen Gorilla. He makes shoes and shapes, sculpted prims, some hair, animations, and jewelry. I make the skins, clothes, hair, gowns, eyes etc. We came to SL together and we are long time friends. We knew one another before SL.”
Having been here for a while, I asked her about her perspective on the current state of commerce in Second Life.
“I think it is much much harder to earn a real life living in SL than it used to be. I think it’s a combination of things. People don’t spend in the same way. There is a recession and there is a lot more stuff out there, so the spending that does happen is spread much thinner. My guess is that the days when individuals really could earn a full-time income here are gone. I think in future it’s going to be more of a pocket thing for many. The statistics say there are lots of people in SL and they are spending money. But on the ground, from a business perspective, I have seen no growth for about a year or more. I love SL and I enjoy it. We have wonderful customers and a fabulous group of supportive people. I just feel less optimistic about it than I used to do.
“The store pays for itself and there is some left over for me, but it’s not really full-time job money and this has been my full-time job for over a year. So, that’s less encouraging than I’d like it to be.”
I asked if there were other factors that seem to be affecting business.
“I think the serious increase in IP rights violations has hurt business in SL. With any business you want to see growth and that is not happening in SL. I wonder where all the new users are!
“The new search was also a blow. It seems to be a mystery to everyone except those who are already playing it to their own advantage. I think according to Search almost every store in SL sells skins these days, whether there are actually skins there or not! I think we come up on page 8 or some such. We are trying to figure out how it works but it seems to be quite mystifying on many levels.”
So how, I asked, did Adam n Eve find itself a provider of the new default avatar skins?
“We were approached and asked if we would be interested in helping and we thought about it and agreed that we would. The initial approach was by notecard and then we had a meeting with Linden Lab. But then Linden Lab did make a few changes to the avatars we made and I think they were better before. When they arrived in the library, LL had mixed them up some and changed clothing, added items from other designers etc. But I suppose it’s all good if people like them and are happy.”
Were they a loss-leader for Adam n Eve – provided free to LL for promotional purposes?
“I don’t really talk about my private business arrangements as I think that is between LL and us. We have had one or two people say they came to look at the store after seeing the default avatars but we haven’t seen any sign of an increase in traffic. The only increase we had involved our own Dollarbie hunt.” A dollarbie hunt is where items in a store are marked down to a dollar for a specific period. Customers can then hunt down those items and buy at one linden.
I told her that other business people I’ve spoken with tell me that to succeed in business, “do what you have a passion for – and keep doing it.” Is that the same for her? “I think so. If I didn’t enjoy it, no amount of money would keep me here. I think you have to let yourself dream a little of the possibilities. There hasn’t ever been anything like SL before where ordinary people can become designers. And some fantastic items are being made in SL every day.”
So what are your top three tips for success in SL business?
“First, get a day job! Don’t rely on Second Life as it is too virtual and unstable. Never approach it for the money. Approach it for the enjoyment and any money that happens can be a bonus. Second, keep quality and integrity in mind at all times. And third, try to maintain a good rapport with your customers.”


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