By Rick Mullenix | Community Manager
Part of what makes our contests unique is that they are all considered “blind” contests. What this implies is that the designers entering a contest cannot see one another’s submissions. The Contest Holder is the only person, at the beginning, who can see all the entires. The “blind” part of the contests only last for the first two stages, the Qualifying Stage and Select Finalists Stage. Once Finalists are selected, the submissions are viewable for everyone. That will move the contest to the third stage, Design Revisions. In this stage only Finalists can submit designs. The remainder of the contest is viewable to all designers and the Contest Holder.
This format has a few benefits, two of which I would like to highlight:
1) Original Ideas
Without seeing what’s already been submitted and ranked, it pushes a designer to dig deep and produce a more original, thoughtful design to submit. Once an idea gets in your head it can be hard to shake off. Having blind stages removes the distraction so focus can be put on the design brief that Contest Holders fill out. We find, and really have proven, that this yields more satisfying results.
2) Less Copies
This allows our designers to feel free to submit their more creative ideas without fear of it being copied to death by other designers. We have checks in place to make sure our designers are honest about their work. While this usually isn’t an issue here at 48HoursLogo.com, there are some that slip through and out of desperation or lack of integrity will steal ideas from designs ranked higher than theirs. Having our first two stages blind eliminates the issue. Plus changing from a blind format in the third stage allows our designers and staff to check for any violations in the submissions, like clipart use or using existing designs. This ensures all designs from 48HoursLogo.com are authentic.
With this in mind I’ve got a few helpful hints to help out those of you holding contests:
DO post references of work you like in the Additional Design Inspirations section of the contest brief. It’s helpful to designers if you comment under the image what you specifically like about it. Is there an element you would like to see used for your design? Something that works for what you’re looking for out of your logo? This also helps designers get a sense of your personal taste and style, which can be more important in some contests than others, it just depends on what the logo is for.
DON’T during any of the stages, post screen shots of what other designers have submitted. This undermines the spirit of fair competition we’re trying to promote through blind contests. It also violates the designer who took time to work on and enter your contest. It’s best to just communicate any changes or variations you would like to see to that particular designer.
DO use the Comments Section on the right side of the contest page. Once designs start coming in, you will start to see some general elements you like about the designs, or some you might not. It’s good to mention these things in the Comments Section. This way everyone can see that you might not like a particular font, or prefer a different color combination than what you mentioned in the design brief. Use this only if the element is a general element to your company’s nature of business. If it’s a creative element originally designed by a designer, don’t post that. Work with that designer to tweak the design to the way you like it.
I hope this article is helpful anyone who would like to host a contest with 48hourslogo.com. While we’ve certainly had thousands of successful contests, we would always like to take the opportunity to help our designers and clients communicate more effectively. I believe this will lead to even more satisfactory designs from the designers, and for the Contest Holders.
For more information on how the Blind Stages break down, visit our Forum Post about Blind Contests.
Be sure to catch up on the CrossFit Craze in our previous post!
“Blind Guy” Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net