You don’t write about voting competitions for ages and then you get a couple of blogs coming along within a couple of weeks! This evening we spotted another brand ditching their intended voting competition mechanic – although we think the decision is more technical than cheating.
IAMS have been searching for a Cat Champion and had employed voting in both stages of this two part competition. The competition was launched last month and offered you the chance to win a Panasonic TV, a year of IAMS and Step Counters. You had to upload a photo of your moggy in action to enter.
The top five voted for pictures from three categories at the end July then went through to another vote off. However, IAMS have announced today that they’re now going to be judging the winner:
“Despite our best efforts, and due to circumstances beyond our control, we are unable to find a solution where we can guarantee the accuracy of voting in this round. The 15 finalists will now be judged independently and the overall winner will be the photo which, in the eyes of the independent judge, best represents the title of Iams Cat Champion.“
Reading through the IAMS Facebook page the competition seems to have been plagued with technical issues. Many people have indicated that they’ve been unable to vote and IAMS have regularly updated to apologise for the problems.
In our view the competition wasn’t well thought out from the start.
To qualify for the final you had to pick up the most votes by the closing date – it meant that people who entered early had more time to canvas for votes than someone who entered by the closing date. Now you could argue “well enter early” but if voting is going to be used to choose “the best” then every entrant should have the same period to get their votes – pretty much as New Look did with their Dancing In Heels.
Reading the Facebooks comments, there are suggestions that the votes were reset multiple times (although IAMS also say they were reinstated) and that votes weren’t counted. It would seem to us that IAMS voting system just wasn’t up to scratch!
So the decision to go to a judged winner makes a lot of sense and it’s something they should have done from the outset. If you’re going through the rigmarole of picking the top 15 entries by public vote there seems little point in then having another public vote to pick the best from that selection!
IAMS have stated that their decision has “not been taken lightly” and in light of the change they will “re-assess the runners-up prizes” – winners will announced on the 13th August. We’re guessing that they will be awarding a few more prizes than they had originally intended.
The tips for promoters here are if you’re going to go down the voting route then it’s advisable to make sure your voting mechanic works properly. That means registering votes and also making sure rules are adhered too. Of course there’s an easy way around this problem and that’s not to run a voting competition!