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Master of the Pit
Original poster
Apr 17, 2006
Garden City, MO
I was talking to TulsaJeff last night in chat and we were trying to come up with a way to run a promotion for SMF and give away some smokers and a couple of Jeff's rub and sauce and sauce recipes.

For Grand prize we were thinking of 4 smokers. A GOSM, WSM, Chargriller offset, or a Brinkmann Pitmaster Deluxe. These were just some that came up as good smokers in the $200-$300 range. I had told Jeff I would be glad to go half with him to make it happen. In addition we can buy it through the SMF store and then Jeff (read our forum) will get a percentage of the sale per the SMF/Amazon agreement.

Second place, Jeff has some type of ECB new in box in his garage. Third prize, the little $35-$40 Brinkmann Bullet. Fourth and Fifth rub and sauce recipe.

What we need to figure out is how to run a contest and determine a winner and runner ups. We were kinda drawing a blank on this at the time. Jeff told me to bring it to the Events Commitee so we can brainstorm and come up with something good.

Also, what is your guys opinions on the Grand Prize Smoker choices. One idea I had was to give the Grand Prize winner a choice out of a few smokers that were in a price range acceptable to us.

I also think we need to try to make this a fun event that we get some mileage out of. It doesn't need to be given away and over with next week. Also, could we draw in some new members somehow?

Cheech, I know you just got a BSKD and I think it could maybe fit the criteria we are talking about for Grand Prize but I don't know alot about it or it's price/quality.
Chad, I must have been out of it. I barely remembered seeing this post. I don't always sleep good working swing shifts.

As I understand this.. We are now working on an SMF promotion to get more membership to the forums. Awesome, Let's put the Thin Blue Crew to work...

1st you ask about a contest.

1) How about the person who brings in the most verified active newbie's to the forum? I would say most newbie's but it would be easy to have all your buddies just sign up and never come back. We would have to set a "secret" number of posts to be classified as "active" over the period of the contest.

2nd is Prizes:

2)On the Grand Prize: I feel that if we use the above as the game then there should be the grand prize for the person who invited the most newbies, and a Top Prize for the newbie who puts in the most or best (however it would be decided) posts, such as questions, or quality comments.. truely learning, not just saying "hey" to others or "LOL"

3)Possibly set up the Rub or Sauce recipes for the most unusual smoker, tools, or gadgets actually used while smoking.. something that may even get the person made fun of. This is one that could be ran as a Post : My Unusual Smoking Stuff...

I'm still gearing up here, give me a few days to think about this.

Does anyone have any inside connections to Smoker supplies or store managers who may like to promote their company?

How soon do we want to start this up? How long will it last?

Let me know what you think and your ideas on this.

Thanks Chad, there are going to be a lot of times when I'm off at my "other" job at night. You and Cheech can keep the music playing.. I'll dance when I get in.
Joe, this wasn't necessarily to be geared toward just drawing members. I just threw that out as a can we draw in some members as we do this. I'm not sure about throwing out hey get us memebrs and you can have a smoker. One of the great things to me about SMF is the quality of members we seem to have, especially in the "regular" crowd. I don't want to just seem like I'm knocking the idea, but I would be very concerned that doing this vastly as a membership drive would be bad for the community. Sorry if I confused with the way my original post was worded.

Not a problem. I was looking for clarity which is why I used the term "As I understand this.."

Okay so this is an SMF promotion, basically for the people that are here or that happen to come along as usual. Not a membership drive. I seem to be at a loss on the scope of the promotion. Can you clarify any at all what type of promo this should be?

Are you talking about finding the craziest person willing to run stripped down naked at a baseball game (I know..NO!!!) or maybe something a little more tame like SMF Blackout Bingo? A national SMF scavenger hunt?

Give us a direction that you may have caught in the conversation with Jeff. I'll try to come up with something in the next few days.

Jeff and I had no direction really. Just an idea about giving away a smoker and not much else. I've been racking my brain and can't come up with much of an idea that suits me as far as how to do it. I'll keep thinking as well, maybe something will soak through the thick outer layer. ;)
I've been thinking about this. I am thinking if we can tie into the "hot" topic of the season we can get a better response. Like now is Nascar season, though not everyone is into racing. The treasure hunt idea would have been excellent during the movie National Treasure, it might still work.

We definitely don't want to use any NBA themes, as they "own" certain March terms and want paid for everything.

We can start by coming up with a hot topic theme and build from that. From there we can get our direction and how to work it out.

I will PM Jeff to see if he might have a general idea on what he would like us to do yet.
This is something I think would be a good thing but I am not sure of the details either. I don't want it to be just about membership although increased membership is a really good thing.

I don't want folks just having their buddies sign up just for the sake of signing up but I am open to having some sort of referral program as part of the deal.

Maybe they should have to sign up AND smoke something successfully AND provide pictures..

We have a referral program built into the software that allows members to send their friends, family, etc. a special link so that when they sign up as a member the system knows they were referred by them.

Just some thoughts.. I am totally open to this..

Just as an FYI.. I know you guys are busy and I don't want to load you down but I would like to have some sort of promotion running at least twice each year.

It doesn't always have to be huge prizes..

We also have a ratings system in the forum where members can give stars to a post that is particularly helpful.

We could give a SMF coffee mug to the highest rated member each month or something similar.

Just rambling really but trying to help you guys understand where I am going with this..

There is really no hurry I guess and if it is too much to handle while we are planning the gathering then by all means let it wait until after June.

I know you guys have a life outside of SMF
How about if we have an SMF Smoke Off on a given Friday or Saturday (or weekend)? The members will post pics only in a specific thread to qualify, and only posts before say Monday morning will count. Have a Poll to vote the greatest achievement... ??? Then do the smoker prize and have a runner up shirt or coffee mug???

Wow totally missed this post.

To answer some of the questions, yes I did just get a BSKD the price was $160 on special. I can see if there are others.

Jeff I have no idea where you got the idea that we have a life outside of the SMF LOL

I love the idea of a smoke off and pictures to boot.

Let me dwell on this for a bit and see if I can come up with a few ideas.

I like the concept though.
I did go back and see if there were any more BSKD and they are out how ever last night I say a propane unit and looked like a good unit. That unit was around $98 maybe something to consider.

As for the contest still not sure what to do
Cheech, we'll get started on this when we know everything is settled on the gathering.. keep thinking and we'll get together for some brainstorming sometime soon
Gentlemen, I didn't get any reply to the PM that was sent out so I thought I'd throw something out here. Just an idea to try to get something moving...

It is summer time which means outside / vacation time. We can run a program of "See the World - Smell the Smoke". Basically while the forum members are on vacation, travelling or not, take some pictures of smoking meat in unusual places and / or ways.

Maybe they will build a homemade smoker to compete, maybe not. But it will get us some pics of neat places and the food being cooked.

Let me know if this strikes a little closer to the idea we are after.

Sorry about the lack of response. I use my inbox as a reminder for a holding box until I answer the email. Unfortunately I lost my inbox when my pc crashed and had to replace it.

I do like your thought here. Sounds like it is something and we do all love pictures. Voting can be a bit tricky but we will see how it goes.

I think this is a better idea than what I did not come up with.
I just didn't have any ideas, so therefore no reply.

Your idea is for sure not bad and the best one yet. As the guy ponying up for one of the smokers it would be nice to tie it into a newbie without any, or at least not much, of a smoker. Maybe that would be a good twist on the above idea. Someone without much experience or smoker building one and we can judge for the prize.

For me, that has been the hardest part of this, figuring out how to get the contest geared to what I consider the learning and/or very basic in need of advancement crowd. The smokinmeat's of SMF is what I'm getting at Joe.
Chad that is a fine direction to take this. So we can set up the criteria for winning are you suggesting only inexperienced smokers or the slightly experienced without much to smoke on (the flower pot guy comes to mind)?

How about a cut off date? Maybe Labor Day? Seems to be the last official day of summer vacation.

I do have one concern that lately we've had a crop of photoshop guru's popping in. I would suggest that all photos must be real and not touch up's or photoshop work.

We should be able to get the ground work set up on this fairly quickly. Once we have it hammered out we can submit it to Jeff for approval or target practice.

Any suggestions or ideas are good right now we are still building this idea so throw em out and lets get moving.

I have an other thought.

What if we set up something like the OTBS where you have to be nominated by someone else based on the nominee going above and beyond.

Not sure we are are too far down the road to change things or if this is even an idea we want to explore or not.

Just for thoughts
IMO, we are definately not far enough along to change course. I just can't get my mind around an idea that I like for this. I am just not too much into if it isn't something that is helping a forum member that is fairly new to smoking. I guess maybe I'm just not a giving person, but like I said above I have no desire to buy smokers to give away for someone like us that have several, have experience, and would really just as soon pick our own gear most likely anyway. If that makes me a bad selfish person, I guess I can live with it. With that said, it is also probably not good business per se to run a contest that a lot of members are exempt from it.

I don't know if maybe I'm putting too much or not enough thought into this. I do still feel like we covered before that a membership type drive is a bad thing, especially where a giveaway is involved.
We could give away a smoker for a newbie and a different gift if you have some one who is a bit more experienced. For an example a Maverick ( Can we really have enough of them). Or possibly a membership to Kansas City BBQ society etc
I was just going through this again myself Cheech.

I do kind of like the idea of a nominations for consideration. Also I like the idea of a tier level of prizes to keep the good stuff going where it should be, not to someone who already has an arsenal of smokers and supplies.

I would like to see it incorporated around a theme of some type. But if it doesn't work out that is fine too. I'm just trying to find a way to get everyone involved even if they won't win the "grand prize".

If they have a chance for a digital probe or some other prize that quailfies them to enter, then we have included every person in the forum. We can set up the smoker for the "newbie most deserving". Which includes the smokinmeats of SMF. And with the teir level that includes the older more seasoned guru's then they have a chance in increase their stash of cool stuff to smoke with.

Chad do you agree that this might be a workable direction? How about you Daryl - is this the way you were thinking of going?

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