Jacob Cass impressed a lot of people with his fun $5000+ Design group writing project. Since the project was announced, his Just Creative Design blog has attracted hundreds of new subscribers. What can you learn from Jacob’s success? Let him tell you.

Jacob Share1) What were your goals for the group writing project?
Jacob CassGain exposure and links back to my blog as well as getting the community involved to provide quality graphic design resources.
Jacob Share2) What did you plan on doing to achieve those goals?
Jacob CassI got a lot of sponsors, prizes and ‘buzz’ by promoting the project on various sites. I also planned to manage the project well and get involved with the people that wrote the articles. I also updated the page every second day.
Jacob Share3) Did everything go according to plan?
Jacob CassI thought I would have had more entries than the 20 or so that came in.
Jacob Share4) How did you get so many sponsors?
Jacob CassI originally posted a post calling for sponsors (I made it out that it was going to be massive) and that went well then I went around to individual blogs and emailed the authors with personalised emails. This also went well. Then there was the friends that I had already made that sponsored something.
Jacob Share5) Did you achieve your goals?
Jacob CassI never set out an exact number I wanted to achieve but I did expect to get about 50 or so entries and I only got half of that. I did achieve the goals but not as high as expected.
Jacob Share6) What would you do the same next time and what would you do differently?
Jacob CassI would make the post shorter. I think people were put off by the length of the post and they didn’t want to read it all.Most things worked and I did not have much trouble as I researched about holding competitions and I learnt off what others had done in the past.
Jacob Share7) What surprised you the most about how the group writing project played out, in a positive and/or negative way?
Jacob CassThe amount of entries was quite low. I was surprised by how much support I was given by the design community. The competition got mentioned on quite a few blogs and the hype was great.

Take away lessons

  1. Research – read up on past competitions and learn from other creators’ experiences.
  2. Promotion – plan in advance on aggressively promoting your group writing project.
  3. Networking – budget time for intensive networking with project participants.
  4. Publicity – use updated or fresh content to keep the project in people’s minds.
  5. Sponsorship – have an explicit call for sponsorship and then follow that up by contacting potential sponsors individually, especially friends and other people who are most likely to help.

Thanks to Jacob Cass for his valuable advice.

--Jacob Share, Professional Blogging Consultant and THE Group Writing Projects Expert