CarrotChances are you won’t win, and then you just spent time writing and promoting something that may not be your normal content, or something you’re not passionate about. Many companies are sponsoring contests that pit bloggers against bloggers in order to dangle a really big carrot in front of the bloggers as motivation while drawing upon our natural competitive spirit. But what I’ve seen happen to other bloggers is that this friendly competition somehow turns into something they don’t want to be a part of. Questions are raised about if votes are being obtained fairly in the contest. Most companies never write “Official Rules” for these contests and make them up as they go. Bloggers may feel like the outcome of the contest was influenced or predetermined by the sponsor.

Most bloggers that participate come away disheartened, not necessarily about not winning that big shiny carrot, but about participating in something that didn’t feel good (and probably wasn’t the best promotion for their blog). That’s because in these sponsored contests of blogger vs. blogger the real winner is almost always THE SPONSOR and not THE BLOGGERS. No matter how big the prizes given away, the sponsor just cashed-in on bloggers sharing sponsored content purely to try to win something. It kind of feels like bloggers are being tricked into these things. Please think twice about participating in this type of contest because your time may be better spent promoting your blog (and not a sponsor).