Nine short weeks from now, I will pick up my passport, pack my bags, and begin my annual trip into crazy-land.
Yes Junkies… It’s “prediction” time. 🙂
Every year, for the past 5 years, I’ve been researching all 52 state contestants, in hopes of predicting who the winner of that state will be. I do it for every state – Doesn’t matter if it’s big or small – whether that state recently performed well at Miss America, or if they haven’t made the Top 10 in decades.
This year, we expect to research over 1500 different contestants as we name a top 5 for each state. And when I do my research on those 1500+ ladies, I ask myself a significant question…
Who’s doing the work of a state titleholder, right now?
In my opinion, it’s the ladies who are doing the work of a state titleholder right now, that have a super strong chance at being named Miss Fill-in-the-Blank come April/May/June/July.
How do you know if you’re doing the work of a state titleholder? I’m glad you asked… 🙂
Question #1 – WHAT TIME DO YOU WAKE UP?
Ask any state titleholder if their sleep schedule is their favorite part of the job, and chances are, you’re going to get a great big – HA! Sleep is a LUXURY when you’re a state titleholder – and ladies who are serious about becoming Miss State, understand the need to live the life of Miss State, as if you already were Miss State, EVERY DAY.
That means, waking up earlier than normal to go work out. That means, ‘looking the part’ of Miss State, even when you want to put a hat on and call it good. That means, having a well-organized day that requires you to stay on schedule. Think about it… State titleholders don’t roll out of bed and go to class. They don’t figure out what their day looks like at 10am. They don’t scan the daily news for 3 minutes and say, “that’ll do”…
If you’re serious about being a state titleholder, get organized and figure out how to fit everything into your schedule. Everyone has the same 24 hours in every day. That means, you have the time to get everything done, if you really wanted to do so. I can always tell when a contestant is serious about winning – because she becomes serious about her schedule. Every Single Day.
Question #2 – HOW MANY APPEARANCES DO YOU MAKE EACH WEEK?
Doesn’t matter if you live in a state that has a lot of contacts, or a state where pageants aren’t super popular, being a state titleholder means making appearances. Appearances that YOU get on your own. Give speeches in schools, talk to rotary clubs, appear at civic events, local business events and parades, sign autographs for kids, attend stuff that’s a big deal in your community… You get the picture.
And don’t wait for people to come to you – You’ve got to go get these appearances on your own! Yes, it’s a little scary if you’ve never done it before, but trust me – after about the 12th time you ask, it becomes a whole lot easier and the rejection factor begins to fade (Lol – Yes – that’s not a typo… You need to do A LOT of asking in order to get over any fear you might have about someone saying “no”).
If you’re not making appearances on a weekly basis right now, you’re not living the life of a state titleholder. Plain and simple. Make the calls. Network. Get in front of people. THAT’S the kind of thing state titleholders do.
Question #3 – HOW EFFECTIVE ARE YOU ON SOCIAL MEDIA?
I know, I know… Some of you are really reluctant to share too much of your life on social media. After all, you’re the kind of person who knows the world doesn’t revolve around you and why would anyone care about what you did today anyway?
Here’s the deal… You need to shift your mindset. You need to become effective on social media NOT in order to promote YOURSELF – but in order to promote the title (or the role) that you represent.
Honestly, if you’re not good at social media now, you’re going to fumble through it all year long as a state titleholder. Your life NOW is a petrie dish. You have small window of opportunity to figure out how to attract people to your social media profiles BEFORE the entire state is watching you.
If you don’t know what to do (or how to do it), commit to learn. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. These next few months are the perfect set of circumstances to watch what your favorite state titleholder is posting about, and to “mimic” it, with your own slant. Yes, it’s hard. Yes, there’s a lot to learn. Yes, it seems shallow at times. But I’m telling you – if you lack sufficient social media skills, you will be utterly frustrated as a state titleholder.
Question #4 – WHAT’S YOUR BRAND?
Do you know what makes you different and/or better than anyone else? Do you have any idea why that’s important? Are you counting on your stellar talent, or your sharp interview skills, or your killer body to carry you through the competition?
Your brand is what makes you unique. It’s the one thing that causes a judge to say, “Huh… She’s not just interested in going to Miss America – She really knows what she wants to do with this job.”
What are you known for? What do you bring to the table that nobody else has? What kinds of things make you “tick” and bring you joy?
Those things are the beginning of your pageant brand. Without a solid brand, you’re just another contestant who has a “passion for your platform” and “a desire to help people.” Those ladies are a dime a dozen. And for the record, those ladies rarely get the state title they’ve been dreaming about.
Contestants who win state titles fervently pursue, and fully understand, their own personal pageant brand. They know what makes them unique. They know who they are and what they stand for. They know why the job of Miss State is important to them. They’re not afraid to highlight something that may or may not “fit” into the typical pageant mold… They refuse to show up at their state pageant being anything less than fully themselves – because THAT’S the best way to do well.
And there you have it! Take a look once again at these 4 things, see where you might be falling short… And commit to improving yourself before your state title.
Right now – it’s still anyone’s game. You are not out of the fight – But believe me, you can’t wait much longer if you expect to finish well. If you begin actively doing the work of a state titleholder right now, you’ll have a much better chance of becoming someone who might win… Plus, you might discover a thing or two beyond pageantry along the way. 🙂
Oh – And don’t forget – That trip to crazy-land takes place in just a few weeks! Pack your bags and prepare for some serious levels of insanity!
If you’d like to read more Thursday BlogDay posts like this one, just click here…
Carrie Lakey is kind of obsessed with Miss America…
So are 15,000 of her closest friends.
As an avid fan of the Miss America Organization, Carrie began
publicly predicting pageant winners over 10 years ago.
Now, she’s galvanizing an online movement of fans
known as “Pageant Junkies”.
Learn more about the Junkie Nation
by clicking here.