USA National Miss Tennessee 2017, Ashlianna Owens, attends a baseball game. Photo: Facebook.
There it is, your dream title. You've worked so hard for so long to finally capture that coveted crown, so now what? Chances are, you will be obligated by your contract to make a certain amount of appearances throughout your year. Making pageant appearances is one of the cornerstones of being a successful titleholder. How do you make the most out of your pageant appearance? Finding success in pageant appearances is critical to your success as a titleholder both during and long after your reign.
According to Rhonda Shappert, founder of Winning Through Pageantry coaching services, pageant appearances should serve three things: they should be fun, they should serve as good public relations, and they should make and impact and serve. Let's explore each of these and discover how you can find success in pageant appearances and ultimately in your life.
Appearances should be fun!
Appearances should be an experience filled with memories that will last a lifetime. When choosing which appearances to attend, look for events that interest you as a person. Do you enjoy sports? Perhaps schedule an appearance to throw out the first pitch at a baseball game. Love fashion? Why not offer to model in a charity fashion show? Scheduling fun appearances means you will enjoy your appearance more, and in return get a better experience out of it.
So let's take the idea of throwing the first pitch at a baseball game and explore the other two components of a successful appearance with this in mind.
Miss Kansas USA 2017, Catherine Carmichael, plays laser tag at an appearance. Photo: Facebook
Appearances are good public relations!
One of the main reasons pageant systems require their titleholders to go on appearances is to promote that particular pageant system. So, when you are doing an appearance, you are serving as your pageant's personal PR person. Let's take the example of throwing the first pitch at a baseball game. How can this translate to a PR opportunity? Of course, you should be wearing your crown and/or banner, but what about your outfit? (Read: 5 Fall Beauty Trends for Your Next Appearances)
Consider wearing the baseball jersey of the team you're throwing for and putting your title on the back. This way, without even having to turn around, people know exactly who you are. You should also always carry autograph cards and business cards with you and a press kit readily available. You never know who you might meet! Pass out autograph cards to all of the attendees at the game and offer to sign baseballs like a real player! Then, make sure you actually TALK to the people you are interacting with. Tell them the benefits of the pageant, how they can get involved, or where they can find more information if interested. Everyone knows someone who knows someone who is eligible to compete in your system, so don't miss that opportunity to make a new sister queen! Lastly, speak with the organizers. You should always be able to book another appearance from an appearance with the right communication and promotion. Perhaps the local little league coach is there and he heard you are a great singer; why not offer to sing the national anthem at their next game? (Read: 9 Tips to Scheduling More Pageant Appearances)
Perhaps the owner of the team is having a charity event later in the year? Offer to attend and introduce the guest speakers. This is where having a business card or a media kit with information on how to contact you regarding bookings comes in handy. You can easily give the person who is interested in booking you all the information they need for your next appearance!
Miss Spirit of New York, Genesis Fernadez, poses on the red carpet at a fashion show. Photo: Facebook
Use appearances to make an impact and serve.
Lastly, your appearances should leave you as a better person than when you came in. You should have made an impact in the lives you have come in contact with and served a cause greater than yourself. So, how do you make an impact and serve when your appearance is just throwing a baseball at a game? Usually, at baseball games, there is always some sort of kid's fan zone where kids can do things like make posters or get their face painted. Why not volunteer to help paint faces or make posters with the kids? Or, even before your appearance, invite a civic or youth group to the game and serve as their ambassador. You could even invite one special kid to help you throw that first pitch. The point is, don't make your appearances all about you. (Read: How to Promote Your Platform Through Community Service)
Make it a point to impact the lives of others through your appearances, and you will always find success as a titleholder.
Miss Georgia International 2017, Yasmeen Furman, and Miss Georgia Teen International 2017, Airiana Blaize, do community service. Photo: Miss Georgia International
Moving forward, be sure to plan your appearances carefully so that you can get the most out of them. Collaborate with your sister queens or queens in other pageant systems to make a larger impact in your community. How do you find success in your appearances? What has been your most successful appearance as a titleholder? We're dying to know, so tell us in the comments below!
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