Okay, suckas, I guess not everybody forgot about the whole iPad giveaway. I thought that whole concept might fade into the ether and that I’d just get my own damn iPad (my morally-challenged SO suggested just saying I gave it away, and instead giving it to her). Frankly, when my trading account took a 20% nosedive in the middle of July, I was pondering whether iPads were edible/nutricious. Don’t call it a comeback; I’ve been here for years – so I’m gonna give away the iPad as promised.
My concern wasn’t really about the giveaway itself, it was more about the construct of the competition. I couldn’t really think of an objective way to evaluate the efforts of those striving to win. Secondarily, the bang-for-the-buck quotient for the giveaway was going to be pretty low: there are only a couple thousand unique visitors to this site every month, and half of those people make so much cash they probably already have 5-6 iPads laying around serving as coasters. Figuring out how to structure this thing was a quandary, to be sure.
Then it struck me that my quandary had elements of a classic business school case study: hazy means to an unclear end, uncertain economic benefits, the optimism of a rose-colored proprietor. Rarely in business school do you work in anything other than teams; it became clear to me that, as then, I needed to surround myself with folks that are smarter and less lazy than myself to figure this thing out. Also, I was reminded that I probably should have taken some marketing classes at B-School – marketing, when you have nothing to sell, is a tough business.
The simplicity of the concept evolved out of that thought: whoever adds the most value to the website will win the iPad. Value is certainly a subjective conceit; like many of the “B’s” I earned on quality English papers, there’s probably going to be some unfairness in the interpretation. That’s why friends of the site Bat Rastard and Flint have agreed to join me on the panel of judges. One was accepted at Princeton undergrad, the other has a JD/MBA from a school that’s Top Five in both – they are legit brainiacs, (mostly) honorable, and neither can hang with the Chillster when it comes to the booze. I will compile all relevant quantitative data and we will vote for the winner, each man/woman gets one vote. If there is a tie (ie we all back a different horse), then SO will cast the deciding vote from amongst the final three choices (no, she isn’t allowed to lie and just keep it herself).
Some suggestions: there are measurable ways to add value, say if you have direct some friends here, have them drop a comment that “UNCMike sent me” – same thing with Twitter adds. Using the Share This button would also be a plus – particularly Stumbles. Getting a link to one of my articles posted in a bigger, better site would score some major points. (Spamming, however, will get one booted from the contest – this is a gentleman’s sport. So don’t bomb links all over the place.) Anything else you can think of that you think is a boost to the site, let me know so I can ascribe proper credit.
People that I know in the brick and mortar world are not barred from the contest, but will play with a substantial handicap in the form of “why the f-ck didn’t you hook a brother up before, since you know me in real life and all?” Gates open now and close at the end of August (yeah, that’s a long f-cking time, but this is a $600+ machine, ya’ll). Also, drop a comment if you feel strongly about 3G vs non-3G: I’m leaning more toward non-3G and tethering to my T-Mobile phone or SO’s Verizon phone, thus no need to add AT&T, ever. I’m probably going to buy an iPad this week – if I don’t like it that one might become the giveaway version, but most likely I’ll be getting one for me and one for you. It’s kind of declasse to give away used gear.
Am working on the drinking game post wisely suggested by Major, so will be back tomorrow.
Later and good luck,