I clicked on the link to the contest page to find out the rest of the details. "Are you a Canadian blogger with an active blog for the past three months?" YES. "Do you love Canadian Beef?" YES, as much as life itself. "Do you have great recipes that use Canadian Beef?" YES. "Do you want to represent Canadian beef in Mexico?" YES!
Now it was time to put together my 2 minute video to submit for the contest. The deadline was October 18th so it was crunch time. I figured it would also be a good idea to read the contest rules and create my video to encompass the criteria that the final product would be judged by. 35% of the judging was based on creativity, 35% was based on delivery and finally 30% was based on passion for beef. I took all these factors into consideration, production began and after a lot of editing my submission was complete. Click the following link to check out my submission as well as those from my fellow competitors.
I can't stress enough how important it was to follow the criteria the contest was expecting from the entrants. There were close to a dozen entries at the beginning of the contest and some of them went well over the 2 minute mark set out by the contest rules. I can't imagine putting all that effort into producing a video for the contest and being disqualified due to length. After a few days of the contest start date there were 9 entries qualified for the voting stage. It is hard to put into words the excitement one gets when they know they have a 1 in 9 chance of winning such a prestigious title and a $6200 trip to Mexico. I also couldn't believe out of FBC 2000 plus members more of my fellow Canadian food bloggers didn't try out for this opportunity (maybe there are a lot of vegan bloggers in Canada?? lol).
The second stage of the contest was the voting period. The top 5 videos with the most votes received between October 19th and October 26th would go on to the judging stage. Now was the time to head to social media to promote my video submission. I am sure some of my friends and family were overwhelmed with my twitter and facebook feeds as I campaigned for the position of Canadian Beef Blogger Ambassador. My submission started out of the gate slightly slow but the momentum really started to snowball. I had friends telling me people as far as Japan had been sharing my campaign posts. Some of my fellow competitors had far more social media followers than I did but I did not let this discourage me. The final day of the voting period I was behind the first place video. I had 416 votes and my competitor was a few votes shy of 500. Thanks to an amazing group of friends and followers my video had one heck of a rally the last day of voting. At 7:45 p.m. I had 425 votes and the leader had 499. By 8:59 p.m. I had 481 votes and the leader had 508. At 10:02 p.m. I had managed to take the lead with 541 votes to 535. There was some back and forth up until the 2 a.m Est. deadline for voting. It was almost like watching fourth quarter basketball, I can't believe the amount of messages people sent me updating me on the number of votes my video had. I can honestly say on October 26th everyone I know was totally engaged with Canadian Beef. I ended up coming in first during the voting period with a total of 588 votes just barely nudging past the runner up who had received a total of 575 votes.
If I had trouble putting the feeling of having a 1 in 9 chance of winning the Canadian Beef Blogger Ambassador contest into words I am not even going to attempt to describe the feeling of having the odds reduced to a 1 in 5 chance. It was in the judge's hands now, cross my fingers and toes and play the waiting game. The judging was potentially scheduled to be complete by October 31st but qualified entries had 5 days to accept their entry to go on to the final stage. This lead to judging being delayed slightly, one thing this contest has helped me with is the virtue of patience.
On November 2nd the waiting was over, and the winner was..... ME!!!! That was one of the best phone calls I have ever received in my life. Such a great honor to be bestowed on me and such a great reward to go along with the title of being the Canadian Beef Blogger Ambassador. The Canadian Beef people scheduled a conference call to outline the expectations for my time in Mexico. It was amazing to hear them speak about how excited they were that a FBC member was the winner. I proudly display the FBC badge on the sidebar of my blog and it's great to know what kind of impact it carries.
As for the #CDNbeefExperience at El Dorado Spa and Resorts by Karisma Hotels? An amazing culinary experience that everyone should try. In fact I will be highlighting the entire experience in an upcoming blog post and look forward to sharing it with everyone. I will share some highlights that my fellow FBC members might find particularly interesting now. From the moment the plane landed in Mexico until take off I felt like a celebrity. This was my ride to the resort from the airport in Cancun.
Once again I could never have had the opportunity to become the Canadian Beef Blogger Ambassador without being a member of FBC. I encourage all members to read the news letter and check out the "Members Only Opportunities" section on the FBC website. Every opportunity might not be the right fit for your blog or your brand but every now and then something may pop up that you are the epitome of what they are looking for. Apply for the opportunities that you can be passionate about and can really dive into. Most of all don't be afraid of not having enough followers on social media or not having enough traffic to your website. Those are not always the deciding factors when it comes to brands deciding on you to represent them. Finally give it your all and go above and beyond the expectations the brand has for you. You never know what future opportunities can come about from a past project you have completed. If you are reading this Canadian Beef or El Dorado Resorts by Karisma Hotels and ever need the help of Canada's most passionate Beef Blogger Ambassador I am always available.