June 20, 2008

Competition: Win the Ultimate Blogging Package by Suggesting a New Feature for Blogger

Update: Entries are now closed for this competition.

Thank you to everyone who participated! The winners will be announced after the draw of all successful entries tomorrow (Saturday 5th July), and I will be contacting the winner and runners up personally about their prize.

Blogger Competition: win the ultimate blogging package!

In celebration of Blogger Buster's first birthday, I am happy to announce the first ever site competition where you could win the ultimate blogging package by taking part in a community project!

There are features which I'm sure we'd all like to use in Blogger, such as:

  • A comment form beneath blog posts
  • A built in method for summarizing posts

Or simply...

  • A better selection of templates for us to use!

The Blogger Team are constantly developing new features for us to use. While we could make use of the Blogger wishlist to vote for the features we'd most like to use, there is much to be said for the value of raising awareness through our blogs!

What better incentive to post about the features we most desire from Blogger than the chance to win the ultimate blogging package..?

The Project

Many readers have commented or contacted me about features they would like to be able to use in Blogger. While I can create tutorials and widgets which serve many of these needs, there are some features which we would benefit from if these were available within the Blogger platform.

For some time, I have wondered how we could encourage the Blogger team to work on the features we would most like to use. Then I realized the answer is simple: Ask!

One person's request may not hold much weight, but if we can work as a community, Blogger will be much more likely to take note.

What you could win

There will be six prizes in total: one "grand prize" for the overall winner, and five runner-up prizes:

The winners will be chosen at random from a list of all successful entrants using Research Randomizer.

One Ultimate Blogging Package (for the overall winner)

For the first prize, I have hand picked (and coded!) a truly useful package of blogging tools, including:

  • A unique, pre-made Blogger XML template (which will not be available for anyone else to use!)
  • A complete blog tune up (including optimizing for search engines and page loading time).
  • A one year domain name, basic hosting and email package from GoDaddy
  • A copy of the Problogger book
  • A one month 125px advertising slot here at Blogger Buster (a $30 value)
  • A set of MiniCards from Moo to help you promote your blog offline.

Note: to prevent this post becoming too long, I'll write a separate post to explain all about these prizes (and relevant terms) in full detail.

5 Runner Up Prizes

In addition, five runners up will each receive 500 Entrecard credits and one month's advertising with the new 30px square banners (these will appear in the sidebar later this evening).

How to enter

This competition is open to anyone who actively uses the Blogger platform to publish their blog, whether you have had your blog for a week or several years.

The competition will run for two weeks, and all entries should be received before Friday the 4th of July at 10pm GMT.

It is very easy to enter this competition! Here is what you should do:

Write a post in your own blog explaining which feature (or features) you would most like to be able to use in Blogger, and why you would like to use it.

This post should include a link to Blogger.com or (preferably) the Blogger Wishlist page, which I will explain shortly.

Once you have published your post, come back to this page and leave a comment to verify your entry. This comment should include a brief explanation of the Blogger feature you would like, and a link to the URL of your blog post.

How the winners will be chosen

To decide the winners of this competition, I will place each entry into a numbered list in the order the entrants comment was received.

Using Research Randomizer, I will first select one random entry according to their number who will win the grand prize. Then a second random selection comprising of five entries will be selected in the same manner; these entrants will each receive a runner-up prize.

I will contact each of the winners about their prize as soon as the draws are completed and will announce the winners on this blog soon after (so please provide a means of personal contact on your blog if possible!).

Rules of entry

To make this competition as fair as possible, there are some rules which you should follow:

  • Your entry should be at least 100 words long (or two short paragraphs), though of course you can write far more if you prefer! Entry posts which are only one or two sentences long will be excluded from the prize draw.
  • You must post about a feature which is not currently available for us to use in Blogger.
  • Only one entry is allowed for each person. Of course, you can write about your own Blogger wish list as many times as you like, but only one post will count as your entry requirement. If you post to more than one blog, write your post for the one where it would be most appropriate.
  • You must confirm your entry by leaving a comment with the URL of your post. A backlink to Blogger Buster is not a requirement for entry, so this will be the only way I can be sure you have entered the competition!
  • Entry must be confirmed by leaving a comment before Friday the 4th of July at 10pm GMT. This will be confirmed by the timestamp of comments left on this post. Entries received after this time will not be included in the draw, so be sure to enter before the deadline!

How this competition will benefit the Blogger community as a whole

The main reason I devised this project and competition is to raise awareness of the features we would most like to use in Blogger.

By entering the competition, you are taking part in this community project. By writing about the features you would like to use, and linking to Blogger, you can help encourage the Blogger team to work on developing the features and services which are most important to us!

Once the competition deadline has passed, I will collaborate the details of the most requested features and post the results here on Blogger Buster as my own contribution to this project.

Help generate awareness for this project and competition

As I mentioned earlier, a link to Blogger Buster is not a requirement for entry. But if you think this project is worthwhile and would like to help generate awareness, I would be very grateful for your help!

There are different ways you could help promote this project and competition, for example:

  • Tell your blogging friends, family and colleagues
  • Link to this post and explain what the competition is about (optional)
  • Stumble, Digg or add this post to your Del.icio.us bookmarks.

If you prefer, you can grab the banner from the top of this post, or add this banner code to your blog:

Good luck!

The competition is now officially open! I'm looking forward to seeing how successful this project will be, and wish you all the best of luck for your entries!

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