Thursday, August 14, 2014



Junkies and contestants get excited about the "Judges Announcement" for a couple of reasons.  Here's Why...

When you have 53 articulate, intelligent, talented and overall fabulous ladies competing for the Miss America crown, it is darn near impossible to figure out who really is "better than the rest".  That's why the judging panel is important.

As a contestant, in order to be successful at Miss America, you need to know who's judging, then leverage that information in order to "connect and impress" in both the interview, and on stage.

I'm reading your mind right now (lol)... and I can tell... some of you... aren't really "buying" what I'm selling.  Chances are, you're thinking one of two things right now... 

Thought #1

          "C'mon... I don't think judges really have anything to do with it.  I believe there's one girl, who outshines the rest and is destined to become Miss America, regardless of who's on the judges panel..."

This school of thought isn't fully without merit.  In fact, Miss America 1995, Heather Whitestone comes to mind... (hope you got to see the YouTube clip we posted of Heather yesterday!)  I truly think that girl was going to be Miss America regardless of who was on the judges panel - Case Closed!

Thought #2

          "C'mon... I don't think the judges really have anything to do with it.  The "powers that be" at Miss America already know who they want to win and the panel is stacked in favor of that girl."

Well - We can't speak to the validity of this claim, although it's held by many people.  It wouldn't surprise us if MAO knew the quality traits and specific characteristics they were looking for in a winner... But... we're not convinced they pick one girl and stack the panel so she can win.  And even if they did - we're not convinced it always works out the way they had originally intended!!! LOL!  :)

So - in light of these thoughts... Here's our "Happy Medium"...

If you're truly "destined" to become Miss America (by the powers that be or through some higher, spiritual force) - then congratulations - I'm so excited for you - I can't wait for your dream to come true - please don't forget to use water-proof mascara on your big night! :)

But, for everyone else who thinks Miss America is kind of a "crap shoot" (and I use that term fondly), then, we say it might be a good idea to discover how you can "connect and impress" the 7 people who hold the fate of the crap-shoot in their hands (lol!). 

So - let's take a look at this year's panel and see if we might be able to glean some insights... The panel includes:

Lee Meriwether - Actress, Humanitarian and Miss America 1955... Beloved "Forever Miss America" by MAO and pageant fans alike
Marc Cherry - Executive Producer and Writer of multiple hit television shows, has strong fondness for MAO, also judged Miss America 2011
Kathy Ireland - Supermodel, Fashion Guru and CEO/Chief Designer of her own company... Conservative and a strong religious advocate
Donald Driver - All-time leading Receiver for the Green Bay Packers, Continually beats the odds against him, Dancing With the Stars Champ
Anne MacDonald - Retired Army Brigadier General, West Point Grad with 2 Masters Degrees, Glass-Ceiling Breaker, now an Executive Coach
Gary Vaynerchuk - Entrepreneur, Author, Public Speaker, Digital and Social Media Branding Expert, originally from Belarus
Shawn Johnson - Gold Medal Olympian, Dancing With the Stars Champ, judged Miss America 2010

So... What do The Junkies see when we look at this panel of judges???  Here's a few thoughts...

1.  Marketing Gurus - Every one of these people found success in a certain area and then parlayed that success into a national brand.  We think this panel will choose a contestant who has a strong grasp on her own 'personal brand' and has a fundamental understanding of how to market via social media.  Doesn't matter if your brand is your platform, or your personality, or your life story - These people understand the value behind branding and marketing.  Any girl who doesn't have a significant understanding on how to sell herself, and how to get the general public to respond, will be left wanting...

2.  Substance Over Style - No Divas here!  These people were not entitled - Far from it!!!  They all started at the bottom and busted their tail to take their career as high as they possibly could.  That tells us this panel will likely choose a hard worker - and someone who is extremely grateful - as opposed to someone who thinks they're better than the rest and "deserves to win".  If you've mastered the pageant interview but can't translate those skills into real life, this panel is going to see right through you.  These people can't be fooled.

3.  Street-Smart and Business Savvy.  These judges don't fit "inside the box" that others have painted for them.  Think about it... in several cases, when everyone thought they had already given all they could offer in a certain career path, they reinvented themselves to become something more (Driver, Johnson, Ireland, MacDonald).  You can't do that unless you have a rock-solid belief in yourself and refuse to let others tell you what you can and can't do.  That means, they're looking for someone who's multi-faceted, won't crumble under a bit of pressure, and has the ability to 'surprise' people who think they might have you pegged.

4.  Hello Fitness!  With an NFL player, an Olympic Gymnast and a Super-Model on the panel - you can bet swimsuit is going to be a factor this year.  Some people say although we've been crowning "good" swimsuit bodies - we haven't been crowning the "most fit" girls in recent years.  I'm guessing that changes this year and we're gonna crown a solidly fit contestant in September.

5. "Entertainment" Trumps "Talent" - No big change here... This is what we've seen with the last 2 Miss Americas.  You don't have to be the most technically skilled contestant to win - But you most certainly have to be entertaining.  If you're technically sound but not entertaining, Junkies hope you add some 'spark' to your routine immediately.  We're not saying a "Talent Queen" has no chance of winning - we're saying you've got to have "Entertainment Value" - period. 

And there you have it!  I suspect the woman who will be crowned Miss America 2015 will be social media savvy, someone who has inner-strength, who is engaging, personable and unstoppable.  The question is... Who will she be...???

Only THIRTY-TWO more days until we find out!!!

Told you this was gonna be a BIG WEEK - And it's not over yet!!! :)

Founding Junkie

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