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Steve Herschbach

Good Time To Start Finds Contests?

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Those of you who have been around awhile know this started as one main forum. As traffic has climbed I have created subforums to organize the content better. Several of those forums have reached critical mass, which to me basically means somebody who is not me posts daily.

Most of the brand specific forums have not reached that point yet although traffic is increasing across the board. That surprises me a little as I was thinking people orphaned by other forum closures would end up on them instead. These things take time though.

Anyway, I was thinking of running some brand forum "Best Finds" contests. I will start with new detecting gear I have accumulated from various sources that will be prizes. The idea is not to have prizes worth so much as to tempt people to cheat - it will all have to be honor system. I think simply "winning" motivates a lot of people but some kind of small prize helps make it more fun.

Example - a "Best Finds" contest for the White's Forum, using a set of White's headphones or a White's digging tool as a prize.

People will basically vote for the best finds by giving the post "likes". In fact, now that I think about it, I can create a new "like" option for voting.

Question One. People can see who "likes" their finds post. Does anyone have a problem with knowing who voted for who? Alternative suggestions?

Question 2. Is a month long contest too long? Given low traffic on the brand forums it seems ok to me but maybe two weeks is better? Suggestions?

And Question 3. When to start? Half the U.S. is frozen now so some people can't participate. I will run these more than once throughout the year, so would it matter? Still, on the first go I prefer as much people get to participate as possible, so back to the question - when to start?

Thanks in advance for your suggestions!
 

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Steve,

I'm in snow territory. Detecting this time of year is challenging, but can be done.  Might mean a little driving on my part, but, hey,  road trips are fun, right ?

 

Rich (Utah)

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I like the idea of it Steve but I don't like that you have to fund the prizes and shipping, perhaps some detector manufacturers or retailers may step in and donate some prizes.  I'm sure for Whites or Minelab or whoever to donate a hat or two or a finds pouch or something here and there or a magazine publisher or book writer donate some of their goodies it wouldn't kill them to do that and it's publicity.  You add that "donate' button we have talked about to use it as prize pool money to be used on prize acquisitions and shipping ?

It may encourage some of the "viewers" who never post to actually join in on the forum.

I think monthly would be best, or even every few months to start with, it doesn't need to be too frequent when a new thing as you would want as many participants as possible in each competition.  Even Minelab keeps it to find of the "month" to make sure there is enough decent entries.

I think anonymous voting is better then people won't feel obligated to vote for people they know and will vote for the genuine best finds.

The problem is if it goes for a month, and in week 1 someone puts up a good find and it gets votes then in week 3 someone puts up a much better find. You'd have to allow multiple votes from the same user however that doesn't really solve the problem of early good finders getting votes they may not of got later in the competition.  Removal of votes as an option may help but most probably will not bother to do that.  This is the bit I see as the hardest part of the competition to resolve.  Can you auto remove votes if a user clicks on another find?

If the competition is a long term project then it wouldn't matter when it starts as long as the prize pool can cope, I'm now looking at the manufacturers with a wishful look on my face.

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I’m in! Sounds like fun.  

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Sure thing man!

1000266(0).jpg

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8 minutes ago, deathray said:

Sure thing man!

1000266(0).jpg

You found that with a Herschbach..? I didn't know they came out of development.. :laugh:

Swamp

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Huh?

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3 minutes ago, deathray said:

Huh?

Steve's setting the contests up to be manufacturer specific, deathray..

Swamp

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The contests would not run monthly. They would be whenever I want or never... no promises. I may run one contest or lots.

The month part was about the length of any contest.

I don’t think multiple votes is an issue. You can “like” multiple things per day if you want and certain posts still get lots of votes and others none. People just have to realize it’s a contest and be sensible with their votes. I will always be final arbiter if ties develop but I don’t think that’s too likely. No worries if it happens.... we can have two winners!

There are ways people can cheat and no way around it. Frankly, if people want to cheat at this sort of stuff they are welcome to it. They may win the contest but only by being life’s biggest losers. You can’t make something like this airtight and I am not going to try. It’s supposed to be for fun. ?

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Not trying to complicate things, so if this is difficult/impossible then obviously it won't fly.

Could you have a time period (e.g. month) for entries but during that time period disallow voting?  Then when the month is up, open a week (for example) of voting?

A secondary (and minor) issue:  could the prize 'sink' to the top vote getter who actually wants the prize?  For example, I have more digging tools than a professional landscaper.  If I were to win and be awarded such a prize, I would like to accept the victory but decline the prize.

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