Congratulations! You’ve just won the title you’ve had you eye on for months now! But all that preparation, planning, and build up probably didn’t prepare you for one thing… what to do now. Rest assured, just because the pageant is finished doesn’t mean you are! This is where the exciting part begins. Now you get to spend a year representing your title as the face (and voice!) of your system!
Chances are another titleholder is part of the reason this system caught your eye in the first place, and now it’s your turn to wear the crown! It’s your turn to inspire next year’s title holder and make your mark on the pageant community.
Each pageant you compete in is essentially a giant job interview. The system and the director understand the job description and they know exactly what they want in their next titleholder. Now that you’ve convinced them that you’re the best person for the job, let’s make sure you prove them right! Here are some basic next steps to making the most of your new title, and showing your pageant director that you were the very best choice they could have made!
Choose a platform. Developing a platform is a personal thing for each titleholder, and it says a lot about who you are, and what’s important to you. Be sure that you are communicating each of those things to your pageant director and your community with what you choose.
When choosing a platform there are always a few things to remember
-#1 It needs to be something you have a personal connection to/with or something that your heart cares deeply about.
-#2 It’s best to be community service, or action, based. Community service is not really “raising awareness” or “informational” it is action based or something you can physically do. Be sure that whatever you choose, there is some act of service that goes a long with it.
Start working your social media. There are a couple of ways to go with this, or you can really go for it, and do them all!
I know that Instagram, Snap Chat, and Tik Tok are the go-to social media platforms for people who are around the age of most contestants and titleholders. Facebook is often looked at as the place for older people to connect, and while that may be true, it is not to be underestimated! There is a whole different group of people in a different age bracket to connect with on Facebook, and these are likely the people who will be of the most help to you on your journey. So, work whatever social media platforms you’re comfortable with too, but be sure you have Facebook somewhere in the mix!
In social media, pictures are key!!! People like seeing pictures of you! You, out in the community, making a difference. If you’re collecting items, remind people at least 3 times a week what you are collecting (with a picture) and where they can drop them off, or how they can make arrangements for you to pick up the donations. Every time you donate items to a local charity, throw on your sash, and share a pic. Every time you stop off to donate an item, throw on your crown and share a pic. Every time you make a community appearance, strike your best pose and share a pic. A strong social media account will share a post with a picture at least once a week, and 2-3 time a week when at all possible.
Create a page for your title- Let everyone see what you’ve been busy doing during the year of your reign, this helps keep your support up in the community, and others will continue to want to be involved in whatever you’re doing.
Create a page for your platform- Get your cause and its name out there. Be sure everyone knows you are out making a difference in the world! Use pictures of yourself as often as possible.
Use your personal page for sharing- Your personal page, and all your other pages should be sharing all your pageant related posts on your other pages for higher visibility.
Tagging and Hash tagging- Whenever possible tag important people and organizations in your pageant related posts. This helps your posts to go further on social media and get your message and example out to more people! Tag your pageant director, tag your system, tag the organizations you’re working with or for, tag people who helped out, or who you think might want to be involved. Tag everyone!!
Start lining up and making personal appearances. It’s important to be out in your community if you want your voice and platform to gain traction. Volunteer to read to a local elementary school, hang out at some community festivals, enter an area parade. Take every opportunity to be the face of your community. When your community begins to recognize you, and respect the things you stand for, you’ll have a greater chance of making a difference during the year of your reign, and helping your platform become something that has staying power long after you pass on the crown to next year’s titleholder.
Bottom line is, someone just handed you so much more than a crown (although, I really hope your crown is spectacular!). They handed you the opportunity to make your mark. To make a difference and have an impact in some of the areas you care most about. You see, as young women you’ve always had a voice, but someone just handed you a chance to have it heard. Make the most of this year and be sure your voice counts!
Photo Credit: Rob Campbell