How best to run a "Member of the Month" Competition

Discussion in 'Members & Staff' started by sphinxwebportal, Jan 10, 2006.

  1. sphinxwebportal

    sphinxwebportal Participant

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    I'm wanting to setup a "member of the month" competition on my site but I'm not sure of the best way to do this, or whether it should be done.

    For example, we could get members to submit names to a thread and the member with the most entries will win. Alternatively, a selection of names could be selected and members could vote via a poll on the winning member. What concerns me about these options is that this might turn into a popularity contest and rather than pleasing members, most of the memberbase might get annoyed.

    I could have a 'nominate this user' button in the mini-profile (next to posts) where people can vote for a member, but only one per month. Again would this have the same effect as above?

    I could use more of a mechanical process, like whomever posts the most in a month, but this might encourage spamming - and often quantity of posts does not equal quality.

    So here comes my question, should member of the month-type competitions be run and can they be run successfully, or should I scrap the idea? If not, what's the best way to run them/how do you run them?
     
  2. STS

    STS Enthusiast

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    Sorry I don't have any imput for you, but this is something I've been interested in for a while, showcasing a member. I don't know if I would have it on a separate page or just have a section with a survey and information on them or what. With our forum I worry we would run the risk of groupies nominating each other and monopolizing the poll (if it were a public one). But there is always the alternative to letting people nominate and having the mods choose (but then people might think we were picking favorites).

    We are kind of a quirky bunch on our site, I think. Lot of dynamics to it. Maybe that's how all forum communities are though. ;)
     
  3. The Kingpin

    The Kingpin Devotee

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    Personally I think that it is quite a good idea. If you go ahead with it though, it should be you that decides who wins. You need to make an announcement letting members know about it and tell them how the member of the month will be chosen. The best way to judge is to get someone who has the best balance of quantity and quality. The person with the best balance wins. This might be hard to judge but I suggest that you ask each of your staff members to nominate someone and then look at these members posts and then decide.
     
  4. sphinxwebportal

    sphinxwebportal Participant

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    Yeah, that was my initial thought - get the site moderators to nominate someone and for me to choose from that list.
     
  5. The Kingpin

    The Kingpin Devotee

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    I definitely think that this would be the best and easiest way
     
  6. PalePhoenix

    PalePhoenix Prince of Dorkness

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    Though this is definitely the easier route, you run greater risk of appearing to play favorites (or at least "favorites of favorites"). Any sort of voting or nomination that does not occur in the public eye is treated with suspicion and resentment, even by the nicest of communities. Unlike SOTM contests, MOTMs are more prone to fall into the trap of popularity, so anything you can do to avoid the appearance of this impropriety would help you in the long run.

    If your board allows polls somewhere, you can always run it that way, by first taking nominations from the general population, and pinning the poll thread. No mods/hacks needed. However, there will be people who expect to be nominated and don't, and who get nominated, but receive few votes...the latter situation is tantamount to public disapproval. Whatever you decide to do, just be considerate of everyone's feelings.
     
  7. Loony BoB

    Loony BoB Newbie

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    The real best way to do this is to have someone else be the person who chooses the MotM and they anonymously tell you who they have chosen, so nobody knows who to suck up to. ;)
     
  8. The Kingpin

    The Kingpin Devotee

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    I disagree with the polls idea. In thw work place it isn't the employees that decide on the employee of the month, it is the employer. In the same way it is the admin that should decide who is the member of the month. You just need to ensure that you are completely impartial.
     
  9. DaUnknownAdmin

    DaUnknownAdmin What Are You Missin?

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    The way we did it was to have our mods nominate 5 members who they thought contributed the most that month. Then we would post up why we think they deserve to be the MEMBER OFTHE MONTH and leave it up to our members to vote for who they thought was the member of the month (winners could not be nominated two months in a row.

    Since we weren't giving away any prizes or gifts we thought it should be more of a member's choice award and not something from the admins/mods. Luckily we only had one month go weird. But other than that we think it worked out pretty well. Traffic and participation has gone down since then so we don't do it anymore. Once things pickup again (*crosses fingers) we will be using this same system.
     
  10. Psyched

    Psyched Adherent

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    how timely .. lol .. I am setting somthing very similar up on my board.

    Here is how I am doing it. I lay out the criteria, which factors will decide who is nominated:
    follows site rules consistently
    helpful to newbies
    respectful to other members
    and the like ....

    I will allow people to send me ideas of who they think should be nominated but the nominations come from my mods (I have 22 mods so getting nominations shouldn't be a problem .. lol). Then when nominations are in, after a given amount of time, the super or global mods will narrow the list down to three or so members and I make the final decision.

    this way the community can nominate but it will be done through private message. Just because someone is nominated doesn't mean they will make the final cut if they do not follow the criteria .. but at least the members feel involved.

    I think it is a great idea (natually .. lol) and the goal for me is to get more members posting with responsibility and thoughtfulness. keeping my fingers crossed on that one .. rofl
     
  11. The Kingpin

    The Kingpin Devotee

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    I like what you're saying, i think that the way you do it has potential.
     
  12. KeesTalk

    KeesTalk Adherent

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    I like this thread! I've been thinking of doing it, but one of my staff members doesn't like the idea and wants me to reconsider.

    I've been trying tot hink of the best way of doing this and can't see to come up with a good answer. Honestly, I've never done this before so it'll be a learning experience for me.
     
  13. ghostfreak

    ghostfreak Participant

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    The mods did this behind my back and it literally caused chaos on the board, we have some very jealous members!
     
  14. dojo

    dojo Passionate admin

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    How I do it? I have my mods and myself nominate 2-3 members that would deserve the rank, vote and the give him the tag and congratulations. In 2 of my forums I also give them points for this, but they are just happy to be nominated. Since they know I value quality posts, this is just a way for them to realise I have noticed their great posting style and that I'm pleased :)
     
  15. ShaynesWorld2006

    ShaynesWorld2006 Aspirant

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    If I were to do this, I would have a few categories like "Top Poster of the Month" or "Best Newcomer" (where I'd nominate the newbies for that month) so it means a few people get chance to be nominated and voted for. I'd use the PM system to vote - anyone but Staff and the current winners will be unable to be nominated and could help count the votes.

    I'd consider this once my Forum grows significantly though!
     
  16. rex_b

    rex_b Fanatic

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    I think they are best not to run at all. They create a popularity contest.
     
  17. LeeD

    LeeD Humble Overseer

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    Agreed. It hurts much more than it helps...
     
  18. rex_b

    rex_b Fanatic

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    Yah it's a great idea in theory but never works. It turns out much more political that fun.
     
  19. dojo

    dojo Passionate admin

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    Well, I have 5 forums now with the program going on. My people are VERY pleased with it and it makes them post even better. It's a known fact that only quality posters have this chance in my forums so people are willing to go that extra mile just for this nomination. And it looks like the others have NO hard feelings about this since they know that keeping up with the good posts will grant them a M.O.M. title maybe next month
     
  20. marse

    marse :-)

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    I've seen it done most succesfully on forums when it's run by the users, nominations and voting. Admins just pop in to sticky the odd thread or maybe post an announcement on the main site.

    Maybe you could just suggest it to your members and let them take it from there?
     
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