Angie is a branding photographer, marketing strategist and hype-woman for creative entrepreneurs

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5 things being a game show contestant taught me about marketing

Back in 2010, my husband and I flew to LA for a fun getaway. We walked along Venice Beach, toured Hollywood homes, and visited movie sets. The BEST part? We were on the game show Let’s Make a Deal with Wayne Brady! We were huge fans of the show and set aside an entire day in the itinerary for this adventure. If you aren’t familiar with the show, Wayne chooses a few people out of the audience to pick a door and there could be an AWESOME prize behind it or a donkey (which means you get nothing)! Before we left for our trip to LA, we did a ton of research on the show and bought silly costumes (a must)! Our hope was to just get picked to play the game, we didn’t think we’d actually win anything. The day was SO long, ya’ll. There were over 300 people in the audience and they interviewed EACH of us before we entered the set.

We finally took our seats, the music began to play and Wayne came out! He looked around the audience to choose someone and we all shouted “pick me, pick me!” I remember locking eyes with him immediately. “YOU! Girl in the jester costume! Come on down!”

WHATTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!????

I ran so fast I almost tripped over myself haha! He gave me and another contestant $500 each and said we could bid for what was behind certain doors. I bid for door #1 and behind it was a ‘create a vacation’ prize ($2K gift card to a bed and breakfast, $2K gift card to American Airlines). Is this real life!? With my second bid, I won $3K worth of furniture to Crate and Barrel. I couldn’t believe it! And then Wayne presented us with one final opportunity. We could keep our winnings or trade it ALL in for what was behind door #3. I decided to play it safe. I couldn’t believe I made it that far and told him I was keeping my winnings. The other contestant did the same. I remember Shaun smiling so huge from the front row. And then Wayne showed us what was behind door # 3.

A BRAND. NEW. CAR. 

WHYYYYYYYYYYYYY!! So many thoughts ran through my head! Why didn’t I take the risk? It’s not like I would have lost anything I truly had already! But wow my prizes are still awesome! So many thoughts and emotions but still an amazing feeling of excitement I’ll never forget. I still can’t believe out of 300 people, I was among only 10 that were chosen!

So let’s unpackage this… how does it relate to marketing? What can I take away from this experience when it comes to business? How do we stand out among an entire crowd also shouting, “Pick me! Hire me!”?

Here are the 5 things being a contestant on a game show taught me about marketing:

1. Have a strategic plan: We invested in the trip, learned how to play and educated ourselves on best practices for being chosen.
2. Set goals: We set a goal of being chosen!
3. Stand out by being yourself: I wore a jester costume that totally reflects me (I’m a jokester haha) and I was completely true to myself during the interview process.
4. Take risks: This is what I learned the hard way. I try to live life with no regrets but sometimes I wish I would have just risked my winnings and went with door #3 hahaha!
5. Appreciate your accomplishments and the journey: In the end, I still won AMAZING gifts and we had a BLAST! It is a memory my husband and I will never forget and we still have the episode on DVR 🙂

I hope this story brought you some joy (and a few laughs) and you took away some fun marketing tips!

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