Contest winners (2013)

12082766_sSometime yesterday my faulty hard drive crashed, so for the past 24 hours I’ve been reinstalling, rebooting, and restoring files – thankfully I recently signed up for an online backup service (BackBlaze), otherwise the loss of data would be devastating.

As it is, I’m kind of on a forced leave of absence (I can’t do much “real work” until I get Photoshop installed and all my client files back), and my download meter says “23 hours remaining.”

As luck would have it, it’s coincidentally the end of my Contest Domination project I ran this month, so now is a good time to reveal the results and offer some reflections about running an online contest.

The Winners

Contest Domination lets people enter the contest and gives them “points” for all the leads they generate – so sharing the contest alone doesn’t earn them more points; only when someone in their network also joins the contents do their scores increase. (I think you get 1 point for entering, and 10 for each lead, so the scores look like “1, 11, 21, 31” etc.)

However (as I just learned) Contest Domination then picks 3 random winners, like a raffle drawing. Those with more points probably had more chances to win (like buying a bunch of raffle tickets) but that doesn’t mean they will win. But that doesn’t seem fair to me, so I’ve decided to award those with the highest points. Since 3 people tied for 3rd place, I’ve amended the awards a little.

I’ve added their Twitter handles in case anyone wants to congratulate them. 🙂

First Place – 1 week writer’s vacation

  • Rachel Starr Thomson  @writerstarr = 51 points

This will be a fun experiment, Rachel will be the first but I’d like to do two of these a year, and make them super special creative experiences. If Rachel is willing we will share some pictures of her trip later.

Second Place – Full “DaVinci” Book Cover package

(Or the author marketing/branding strategy – probably I’ll do some of both).

  • H. Raven Rose @ChocolateVamp  = 31 points

Third Place – Help with whatever you need

  • Terri Wagener @tlwagener  = 21
  • Kathy [email protected] = 21
  • Shah [email protected] = 21

While I can’t offer full print cover to all three tied for 3rd place, I think a fair prize would be $200 worth of any graphic-designer services (or about 4 hours of my time). If you’re working on a cover and need my help, that’s fine – if you help find images I can make an ebook (front cover) for you. If you need business cards/bookmarks I can make, print and send some to you. If you need help with marketing and promotion I can review your Amazon page and give you some personal strategies to sell more books. It’s basically a Carte blanche to be used how and when you need it.

Reflections

I like the idea of prizes and games, but I don’t think I’ll use Contest Domination again. I don’t like making people repost giveaways and things that can look like spam (which can be annoying, and probably isn’t great for building your own platforms). It’s also not as creative or personal as I’d like it to be. So while I really appreciate everyone who got involved and shared the contest, I promise next time will be something different.

Ideally I’ll finish a couple of books by the end of the year, so I can offer big prizes for reviewers.

I also like the idea of writing contests or photo-scavenger hunts or something more visible… I’ll probably try different things just for fun. Thanks again to those of you who entered the contest, hope you win next time!

About Derek Murphy

I help authors and artists turn their passions into full-time businesses, make a bigger impact, and blaze a luminous trail of creative independence. Right now I'm in Taiwan finishing a PHD in Literature, writing several books, and managing a handful of online businesses. Find me

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