It’s a well-known rule of competition: not every contestant is the perfect fit for every pageant. Maybe the contestant doesn’t have the right academic background, community service work, or preferred personality. We all know and recognize this tough, but important, rule. But the “perfect fit rule” goes both ways: not every pageant is a perfect fit for every contestant. Sometimes contestants become so focused on winning in a particular system that they don’t evaluate if that pageant is the best fit for them. And then they’re stuck in the wrong pageant. As a result, their scores aren’t improving, they’re not winning and they become frustrated. Often, the problem is that they’re not competing in the right pageant system. So, here are 4 steps to help you pick your perfect pageant!
1. Evaluate your gifts and talents. Begin by making an honest inventory of your natural gifts and abilities. Here are several categories you might consider:
- Public Speaking/Interviewing Skills
- On-Stage Modeling Skills
- Hair/Makeup Skills
- Fitness in Swimsuit or Aerobic Wear
- Community Service Experience
- Talent Presentation
- Academic Record
Once you’ve made your list, rate yourself on a scale of one to five in each category. As a result of your evaluation, are there areas that you can improve with a little work? Or, do you feel there are some areas where you’re just never going to get top scores? Rather than just competing in the same pageant over and over again, evaluate your abilities to increase your opportunity to win!
2. Review the judging criteria and compare it with your strengths. Now, check out the pageant judging criteria. Start by looking for pageants that focus on your top three areas from #1 above. If you’re strong in public speaking, look for a pageant with 40% of the total score based on your pageant interview. Perhaps you’re strong in onstage modeling; you should look for a pageant with at least 65% of the total score based on your onstage presentation. Or maybe you’re strong in community service; you might look for pageants with at least 40% of your total score based on your platform work. By taking the time to evaluate the judging criteria and pick your perfect pageant, you’ll increase your chance of getting top scores.
3. Take a look at the website and check out the previous winners. Most pageant websites include a brief bio of the current titleholder and that bio can provide helpful information. If the bio emphasizes her strong community service and leadership accomplishments, you’ll probably need a similar background in order to stack-up. Perhaps the emphasis is on her academic achievements, then you’ll know that academic achievement is important in that pageant system. I’m not suggesting that you copy her background – instead, look for success patterns and clues in the background of the titleholders.
4. Check with your pageant coach for feedback about the pageant. Most experts in the pageant industry get feedback about pageants from contestants all the time. Because they’re ‘in the know’, check with your pageant support team to see if they’ve heard of the pageant you’re considering. Ask these key questions: What feedback have they received from contestants competing in this pageant in the past? Does the pageant have a reputation for delivering the prize package advertised? Does the judging seem consistent and professional? Rather than taking a shot at an unknown pageant, take time to investigate the reputation of the pageant.
By following these simple steps to evaluating yourself and the pageant, you’ll be better able to pick your perfect pageant.
You’re going to be fabulous!
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