Thursday, August 4, 2011

How the iPad Was Won: an Old House Story

In our most competitive contest ever on daily5REMODEL, the prize in July was an iPad 2. The subject? Old Home Renovations. The winner, after a seven-day voting marathon that brought 2,952 votes and ended only this afternoon, was this remodel and small addition in Wilmette, Ill., by Blank & Baker Construction Management.

Thanks to the sponsor, Crown Point Cabinetry, and to the dozens of remodelers who shared the stories of some of the old homes they've helped to restore. 

I asked Chad Blankenbaker how he rallied his supporters behind his project. His answer is below.  -- Leah Thayer, editor

Very exciting. I can't believe we won, I was just happy you chose our project to be one of the featured projects.
I don't think I did anything revolutionary, it just seemed to gather momentum on its own.

So I started off by posting it on both my personal and business facebook pages as well as RemodelCrazy.

Then I sent out an email to all my friends and family. Next thing I know I started to get emails back from everyone saying they voted and that they forwarded the email to their friends and coworkers. I never asked them to do that but it was flattering.

So then I started sending it out to all my vendors and subcontractors and I got the same response. People were excited for us and wanted to help.

Then after much contemplating, I decided to send it out to all my past clients, past prospects that didn't materialize, to current clients, to prospective clients, to architects that I've worked with and the response was overwhelming. 

Even all these people were passing it on to their friends and coworkers and some of them cc'd me on the comments they were posting along with my email something along the lines of this is the contractor that did the work to our (enter project here) and he is the greatest blah blah blah. To my surprise those emails resulted in two leads for projects I need to go and look at so that was a huge bonus.

Then to wrap it up, I then posted it on LinkedIn and Twitter as well.

So it was nothing that required much work. I think the reason the email campaign worked so well was because for one I was asking for help. I think generally people like to help people if you ask for it and it doesn't take much effort. I've been asked many times before to vote for things online and I usually will but once in a while you get the request for a vote that requires you to sign up on a website and give out personal information and I hate voting for those things so I think you voting system that makes it so easy for people to vote helps a lot. 

I spelled that out in my email how easy it was to vote, just 2 clicks of the mouse! is what I said. People like that. I also had many people email to tell me they voted using their computers, cell phones, ipads, for these people to be able to easily get onto the website using their mobile devices helped a lot I'm sure.

Anyway, I think that's about it. Thank you so much for letting me be a part of it. It forced me to reach out to a lot of past contacts and ask for help, something I've never been comfortable doing before and it felt good to get such a supportive response in return.

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