Sunday, February 13, 2011 Talks Blog Contest: My View on Making an Online Contest Click

Join Talks Blog Contest and get a chance to win as much as 50$ via paypal. All you have to do is blog about a DigitalFilipino Talks episode and add your insight.

This contest is open to all subscribers of

Here are the mechanics:

1. Blog about a DigitalFilipino Talks episode and add your insight.

2. The said blog post needs to have the DigitalFilipino Talks video embedded and link to it, comments from readers, and a Facebook Like button.

3. Submit the url of your blog entry to the page of the video you have chosen to feature. Cut-off for submission is before midnight, Monday to Friday.

4. Five (5) winners will be announced every Sunday (February 20 and 27) picking one entry submitted on a per day basis (1 for Monday, 1 for Tuesday, 1 for Wednesday, 1 for Thursday, 1 for Friday).

If there were no suitable entries received, we have the prerogative not to choose a winner for the said day.

Winners will be chosen based on the following criteria:

1. Adherence to the mechanics.

2. Quality of insight whether from the blogger and/or from resource persons interviewed.

3. Quality of comments.

4. Effort taken to promote the said blog post. (based on Facebook Like and other social media)

Four winners will receive US$20. The best post (5th winner) will get US$50. Prizes will be transmitted through Paypal.

There is no limit on the number of times a blogger can win.

My View on Making an Online Contest Click

Last January 26, 2011, posted a video on Making an Online Contest Click. Renowned contest blogger Jayson Biadog of Winners Place was interviewed for this topic.

Making an Online Contest Click from Janette Toral on Vimeo.

The full blog post can be found on's link with the same title. Click here to view...

After watching the interview with Jayson, I would like to state my own opinion regarding the topic.

A. About the Like / Online voting contest:

In the first portion of the interview Jayson was asked about his views on online voting contests. I totally agree with him that online contests should minimize the 'likes' or online voting criteria.

Just like Jayson, I myself am a frequent online contestant. Based on my experiences, I try to avoid contests where winners will be based on 100% online voting or "like" criteria. And just like Jayson said, online votes can easily be manipulated. There was one experience where I tried my luck in a photo contest and online votes are part of the criteria. I asked some of my friends to vote for my entry, but 1 hour before the closing deadline, something 'strange' happened. My friends were not able to log-in to the contest website, and thus were not able to vote.

After the cut-off time passed, they were able to enter the site but they soon found out that some entries received more than 500 votes within that hour.

Of course I didn't win the contest but the sad part is that the winning entry received those 'instant' votes. As a contestant, I do not have any right to contest the results released by the organizer. If I were someone else, this experience will tell me that contests are unfair and biased to those who can magically come up with the votes and at the same time lockout other internet users from voting. I know it is possible to make programs or viruses that cause denial of service or DOS attacks on certain websites restricting users form accessing them.

Another experience from online voting contests is that there are certain people who win over and over again as long as the contest is a 100% vote criteria. If the vote criteria is less than 30%, their entries seem not to have much chances of winning. In my opinion, if other people see these certain individuals winning in online voting contests multiple times, they assume that these people manipulated their way to winning. It would have a negative effect in contests in general.

B. About the Nature of Contests

Like Jayson, I have joined many kinds of contests, not just blogging - both for online and offline. I have joined photo contests, video contests, blog contests, writing contests, poetry, assembly art, digital art, and lot whole lot more. Before I join a contest, I make sure I have enough quality time to create my entry, and at the same time read the mechanics carefully. From the mechanics, I can draw out my probability of winning the contest I want to join. If I see a contest that has an online voting criteria of more than 30%, I would think twice before joining it. It would be waste of my time and effort should I not win while the winner might have an entry that seems to have been done with less effort than mine.

C. About my interest in joining contests

Unlike Jayson, I do not join as many contests as possible. Although his strategy works, my strategy also works fine. I try to pick contests that I think I have a good chance of winning because of my current skills. If I choose a contest that is far from my abilities to win, I join for the sake of learning. Because of joining contests, I was able to learn a lot - from using blogger that allows me to make blog posts for contest submissions, to making video, and using music generation software in case I join music and composition contests. The more I join, the more I learn.

D. Making an Online Contest Click

I definitely agree with what Jayson says about how contests should be done. Yes, contests should have: 1) content 2) marketing and 3) advocacy.

We definitely want to take pride in whatever contest entry that we managed to win specially due to criteria 1) and 3). This is because these two define who we are as contestants. We feel like winners because our entry deserves to win, and not because we had the most number of votes.

E. How to attract more contestants and spread the buzz.

This wasn't mentioned in the video but in my opinion, and overall experience, people join contests because of the prize. In fact I join contests because the prize is worthy enough. The bigger the prize, the more people will attempt to join. It will be a whole new ballgame if the prize exceeded more than 10,000 pesos cash. Laptops, cellphones, Apple products and cash prizes are among the most attractive contest prizes people want to win. Tell a person that he may have a chance to win 100k pesos cash, he will definitely try (as long as he has the knowledge on how to make an entry).

And this is also why I do not like a contest with full online voting as criteria. The bigger the prize, the more people will attempt to cheat the process in order to win. If organizers want to give away a big prize, I say MINIMIZE if not remove the online voting criteria.

For me, a contest is a test of will and a test of skill. Whoever wins a contest must be truly deserving.
con - against
test - trial / obstacle

Through contests, we will be able to boost creativity and ingenuity for us Pinoys as a whole. Through contests, we learn values like patience, determination, and humility (accepting defeat). Through creating and participating in the right contests, whether we win or lose, we all gain something from it. In effect, we all get to win.

This is my entry to's Talks Blog Contest. Be part of the conversation. Visit the contest page to join. Feel free to comment on my blog post about My View on Making an Online Contest Click.

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