So Who Wants Some Promos?

Let’s get straight to business here, LSS sent me a Content Creator Appreciation Kit and I’ve got cards to give out! I’ll talk about my thought process on making a contest to give these out and existence of the kits in general later in this piece, but I want frontload the information on prizes and the contest itself. I took a few days to consider accepting a kit when they offered me one because I didn’t want to do it unless I felt like I had a good idea for how to distribute the promos. As you can tell from the linked post to the LSS site, they are being very permissive in terms of how creators give out prizes, which gave me a lot of room to work with. What’s in my kit? Well, we’ve got extended art foil Herald of Protection in all three pitch values (60 of each). There’s also a Herald of Protection playmat. I’ll be giving out half the cards in this contest via bundles of playsets (so three of each pitch value). I wouldn’t want to leave anyone with only a partially blinged out set. I’ll run a second contest shortly after the first finishes to hand out the others. The playmat is sort of a TBD thing right now. I’ve seen some content creators opt to keep theirs and others have handed them out as prizes (again, LSS is fine with this per the post above). I’m partial to winged beings, but I also have a lot of playmats, so I’m undecided on the subject at the moment. I’ll let you know what’s happening with it in a future post showcasing the winners.

Also, since I have you here. I want to announce an announcement. LSS has been kind enough to give me spoiler card for Tales of Aria (No. I don’t know what it is yet). So on September 7th (I assume NZ time) I’ll have a very exciting spoiler for everyone.

Finally, I want to say that, while I don’t make content to get free stuff, I have long been jealous of the LSS notes that people get from various things. So I was legit excited to get this one with the kit. Now the dream is a black envelope (those go out for things other than being good at the game, right?)

What Do I Have To Do?
You didn’t think I was going to make this easy did you? If there’s one thing that FAB with Freyja stands for, it’s doing things in an overly-complicated way. Congratulations! In an effort to get more flavor text into the game, you’ve been hired as an ad hoc writer. I’m going to give a curated selection of FAB cards and a prompt for what I’m looking for in a flavor text. It might be something like this:

With a prompt of “A really lame pun that that only the most shameless of dads would laugh at”.

To which you might write, “Anyone who isn’t ready to throw down better leave”

I will then go through the submissions and pick the one I like best. If I pick you, congrats! You win some cards. All of this will take place via a Google docs survey which will allow me to read all the answers in a batch and then only check who submitted them after I’ve picked my favorite. Please read the rules section below, at the end of which will be a link to the contest page. While not a guarantee, because this contest requires some work and creativity, I imagine I’m going to get far fewer entries than if I just made a “put in your email address for a chance to win” context. That means that you probably have less competition here than you’ll have with most other content creators. I’m also hoping that the complete sets make it feel like an adequate reward for the effort.

Rules
1.) The contest is open to anyone who wants to participate.
2.) You may submit one flavor text for each card. We’re on the honor system here, so just be cool.
3.) You may only receive one promo bundle. If someone wins more than once, all wins after the first will go to the runner-up and so on until a person who hasn’t already won gets a promo bundle.
4.) The contest is open until 8pm Eastern Standard Time on Sunday, August 22.
5.) My goal is for this to be a fun, laid back thing. I reserve the right to disqualify anyone who causes problems or makes it overly challenging to get them their winnings. I may also make additional ad hoc rules or rulings at any time.
6.) If the unlikely event that I get less than ten entries, I’ll figure out some other way to give these out. Also, I will be real sad.

The contest itself and additional rules are here. Good luck!

The Part Where I Ramble
In case it wasn’t obvious from the section heading, you don’t need to read anything else from here on down if you just want to enter the contest. This bit is going to be a discussion of my decision on how to do the contest and thoughts on the kits themselves.

Anyway, for me, accepting the kit wasn’t a quick snap decision. LSS, in a way that is a lot more overt than most companies ever do, has positioned these as tools to help content creators increase not only their platforms size but also their earnings. This is a cool decision, but I’m in a weird position (unsubstantiated claim incoming) where I’m going to guess that I’m in contention for being the largest FAB content creator who isn’t monetized. So, for me, much like running this site, I knew that if I accepted a kit, it was going to cost me a modest amount of money. Given that, I didn’t want to take a kit if I was just going to unpack it and then mail cards out to random people; I wanted to have a way of giving out the promos that was itself interesting content that I was excited about making. From there I started thinking about what I could make people do. Drunk with power (and at least partially gin) but unsure of how to wield it, I was inspired by a Modern Horizons 2 Sketch card sitting on one of the ever changing piles of cards on my desk.

These cards included the instructions that the art director gave to the artists when telling them what to paint/draw. Asking for art seemed a little ambitious for a handful of foils, so I focused in on a more modest task that fit right in with some stuff I’ve been writing about lately. During my interview with Nicola Price, I told her I wanted to see people putting more weird content out there. I’ve taken this as my chance to get people to produce a bit of micro content for FAB.

Deciding how to best give out the promos logistically was the other major consideration. Not to sound like a broken record, but I don’t make any money off this, so mailing out 180 cards individually sounded fairly expensive and time consuming. Also, I personally like to play with fancy versions of cards (I’m keeping one set of Herald of Protection to hang out with my EA Herald of Erudition set in the Prism deck I hope to get to use in person someday), and it sucks if you only have a partial playset of a special version of a card. So, playsets it was. I feel like it also makes it seem like a more substantial prize, which is cool. The mat was an unknown – the email LSS sent out said promo cards and “one other surprise.” So I didn’t really plan around it even if I suspected that it might be a playmat. I have an idea of a task for the second contest that I could award it for, but, as I said above, I’m also contemplating keeping it for my own use.

Moving over to the business end of this, it’s really an interesting choice by LSS to explicitly do something that gives content creators permission to use these to improve their monetization (as long as they’re engaging with their audience and not just selling the cards directly). Like the email they sent listed, ‘offering them as Patreon rewards’ as an example of a way you might want to use them. I’m not monetized because I feel like if I was, I would feel beholden to people who were giving me money and probably also that I should be producing more content. I don’t think the amount of money that I could generate is high enough to make taking on that pressure appealing. I’ve got enough professional and semi-professional obligations already, I don’t want to add more stress to my life. However, for a lot of content creators, especially those angling to make it into an actual primary source of income, this is really an impressive perk from LSS. Companies like Wizards of the Coast primarily “help” content creators by giving them spoilers, that’s the theory anyway. In reality, at the scale of Magic, the biggest content creators are really the ones doing WotC a favor by driving hype for their next set to their tens of thousands of followers. However, FAB is still at the scale where almost everyone getting spoilers is going to get at least a modest bump in traffic due to their preview. And then LSS, out of nowhere, just throws the kits on top, wild.

*Header Image – Herald of Protection by Simon Wong

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