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Win 1 of 10 Trips to The Great Barrier Reef in Queensland Australia #QldBlog

Update: this competition is now closed to new entries. We’re now narrowing down to find our 10 winners who will be contacted and then announced here on ProBlogger on 24 April (note: I previously wrote 23rd of April but this was my mistake. As per the terms and conditions it is 24th April). Thanks to all who entered!

As a blogger, I get pitched to a lot by companies and organizations asking me to endorse their products. The problem is I have limited or no experience with many of them, and to endorse them would feel like selling out.

As a result, two years ago I created a list of things I would feel comfortable endorsing.  It was a dream list of products that I would love to promote because I genuinely feel a love for them.

The list was short and was made up of companies and products that I’d drop everything to work with. On the top of my list was something that I have a lot of experience with—something I promote at any opportunity and something that I’d always dreamed of showcasing on my blogs.

That thing was Australia

107421-634.jpgI’m an Aussie and I am regularly asked if I’ve considered moving overseas to further my business. While the idea has occurred to me a few times, I can’t imagine ever leaving Australia for more than a short trip.

One of my favourite parts of this enormous country is Queensland—Australia’s holiday playground, and a regular vacation destination for my family. It’s also home to one of the world’s natural wonders: the Great Barrier Reef, a 2300+ kilometre stretch of 2900 individual reefs and 900 tropical islands. It’s over 350,000 square kilometres in size, and the only living structure on earth that can be seen from outer space!

Aside from this natural wonder, Queensland is known for many things. It has a tropical climate, beautiful beaches, a casual atmosphere and the options to either relax or do something adventurous (check out the 5 regions of the reef here). It’s the antidote to routine and it’s one place that Aussies go to recharge and rejuvenate.

My dream came true

105823-634.jpgA year ago I was in Queensland for a conference and, sitting at the airport, I had the crazy idea that we should run a ProBlogger Down Under competition. The idea was simple—we run a competition to bring a group of bloggers to Australia to see the Great Barrier Reef and also do a little blogging training. I tweeted the idea and was inundated by people wanting to enter. I also received tweets from some tourism organisations.

To cut a long story short, today I’m ecstatic to announce a competition to bring ten highly creative bloggers from all corners of the globe to Queensland to become Queensland Blogger Correspondents. Lucky winners will not only experience the destination first hand, they will get to blog about it plus become a guest blogger for Tourism Queensland’s own blog later this year.

Win a trip to Queensland (and get some personal ProBlogger training)

From June 5 to June 10 this year, Tourism Queensland and I will bring ten of what I think are the most intriguing bloggers from around the globe to Queensland to meet me and experience the Great Barrier Reef as Queensland Blogger Correspondents. You could be one of them.

The idea is simple: I love Queensland and I want to showcase it to the world. I also believe in the power of blogging and social media. So the best way to get the message out about this tropical playground is to invite people like you to experience it.

As part of the experience, you will be required to report about your adventure on your blog and social networks. The content will later be added to Tourism Queensland’s new blog. It’s going to be fun, but there will also be a little work (if you call blogging “work”) involved. A working holiday of sorts.

Plus—as an extra bonus—during the trip I’ll be running two exclusive training workshops for the ten winning bloggers. We’ll spend four or five hours—perhaps on a tropical island or maybe under the canopy of the world’s oldest rainforest—talking about the principles of successful blogging and workshopping how you can improve your blogs.

Prize details

Ben_Southall_Seawalker_Green_Island-638.jpgTen lucky bloggers will win a five-day, all-expenses paid trip to Queensland, Australia including return economy-class air tickets, accommodation, excursions to some of Queensland’s bucket-list attractions like the Great Barrier Reef, meals, and two close-encounter workshops with me. The event will run from June 5 until June 10, 2012, not including travel time.

In return for seeing some amazing sights, tasting some modern Aussie tucker (food), and meeting some wonderful characters, we’ll put aside time for you to create content (a minimum of two blog posts complemented by tweets, videos, photography, status updates, or podcasts) for you to share with your audience. The content will later be featured on the Tourism Queensland blog.

Please note that this prize is open only to bloggers over the age of 18 and I can assure you that we will be busy! As such we will be unable to cater for partners, family, or friends. For more information about the Tourism Queensland ProBlogger Great Barrier Reef Event prize and the terms and conditions, click here.

UPDATE: here is the 5 day itinerary for the trip.

How to enter

Palm_Cove,_Tropical_North_Queensland-638.jpgFor your chance to win a spot on this exciting trip we want you to tell us why you would make the ideal Queensland Blogger Correspondent.

We will choose ten winners based on how you would cover the experience. How you would get the word out about what you’re doing. What kind of exposure you could bring to the destination. What creative methods you would use to share your story.

But hurry, the competition closes at midnight April 17, 2012 (AEST—that’s Australian Eastern time) with the announcement of the winners on April 23, 2012 (AEST). Please note that Australia is a day ahead of some parts of the world!

To enter, please read the competition terms and conditions and then head to the competition entry form.

There you will find a form that asks you for a range of information about you, your blog, and how you’d cover this trip.

106395-634.jpgWe need some basics like your name, blog URL, traffic, your social media accounts, etc., but also want you to tell us how you’d approach covering this trip as a blogger correspondent.

Note: This is not just about finding the biggest blog to award the prize to. We will consider audience size, but we’re also extremely interested in hearing about your audience, how you’d cover the trip, and how the trip relates to your audience, as well as reviewing quality examples of your work.

This competition is open to bloggers anywhere around the globe (including within Australia) and we’re interested to hear from a range of bloggers from different niches.

Please ensure that you carefully read the terms and conditions of this competition before using the entry form.

Good luck to everyone – I look forward to spending a few special days with 10 of you on the Great Barrier Reef in June!

UPDATE: we’ll be using the hashtag of #QldBlog on Twitter to track this conversation.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Great! I just completed writing my board exams and look for a vacation and what a timing, i found this :D

  2. I have friends from Australia that really reflect the mindset of this beautiful country. They’re Aus-some and so is this idea and your book! Love it!

  3. sailal says:

    wow …………. australlia Thanks Mr. Darren Rowse for providing this wonderful opportunity to visit queensland i would be very thankful for you if i win the contest i hope for the best ……..

  4. Jose says:

    Hey mate, this sounds like an awesome chance to go and meet the Aussie babes! I hope I win, I would love to go to Australia!

  5. Jaime says:

    Darn! It’s right during Blogworld and I’m speaking. It’s too bad there are two great amazing events at the same time.
    I can’t convince you of a date change can I? ;) (pretty please?)

  6. It looks like living the dream

  7. Andrew Smith says:

    Good idea to use guest bloggers, could enter myself but too busy :) Hopefully some blogs in other languages too.

  8. Linda says:

    Austria and Australia – yeah, I think I could do something with that! Bring it on….

  9. An amazing competition, Darren! I won’t be able to enter it due to my commitments to caring for my baby who I couldn’t leave for a week. I hope you will run similar opportunities in future years (like when he is a bid strong secure kid – and he will be!) – because I will be there! I’ll be rocking!

    Will watch this adventure with interest – and best of luck to all the entrants. I’m sure it will change their blogging life.

    And by the way, I was pumped after hearing you speak at DPCON last week. Thank you!

  10. I have entered and I am so excited for this wonderful opportunity. Queensland has a very special place in my heart as it was the place I got engaged :) I am Canadian currently living in Vancouver, Canada. I married an Australian and on my leap list (before I got married) was to go scuba diving. So my than boyfriend took me scuba diving in the morning on our vacation to the great barrier reef and by the end of the day I was engaged. He proposed to me at lovers cove on Daydream island :) My trip to Great Barrier was prior to my current love of photography and was a very long time ago. Having only visited once for a short period I feel as though it would all be a new adventure and experience that I would love to capture behind the professional lens and share it with the world.

  11. May OZONE says:

    Great info! Thx so much.

  12. I’ve made it to all the other continents. For some reason Australia has always been elusive. This would be a great opportunity.

  13. Entered! I checked my calendar, and guess what?! Who cares what it says. A trip to The Great Barrier Reef trumps all. Let me get this summarized – free adventure; free training with a pro; free accents to bring home and impress my group exercise classes with! Sha bam! Laugh-Learn-Exercise-Live, as my twin sis and I say over on our blog. Thank you for offering this opportunity!

  14. Alfie says:

    The great barrier reef should be left alone before the ecosystem there breaks down… just my 2c.

  15. sonkralice says:

    greaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaattttttttttttttttttttttt

  16. Todd Mosher says:

    Anyway the timing could be moved up to include the Cairns Adventure Festival which includes the Ironman Cairns triathlon June 3? That would include some great events for the guest bloggers to comment on so what about June 2-7 instead of June 5-10?

  17. Osward says:

    I think this will give bloggers an exciting time to connect and learn. I will give it a shot.

  18. Always heard that nothing, not movies, photos or stories can convey the beauty of Australia. Should be a wonderful trip for all the winners.

  19. Robin Raven says:

    That would be a dream come true. I entered the contest. Thank you so much for posting this fantastic opportunity.

  20. Yesterday (9th April,2012).I was just going through the internet and reading about 10 happiest countries
    Australia was no.2 amoung them.A part of this my daughter,with her husband and my 2 grand daughters are there and are very happy.Its confirmed that Australia is happy country.I wish and pray that every human on earth become happy and there should be peace and HAPPYNESS everywhere.

  21. This contest is so exciting! Great Barrier Reef is one of the best places to visit in the East.

  22. So, tell me, are you really going to consider up and coming bloggers, or will the winners be among the proffesional bloggers that have thousands of followers? I’ll be entering because I believe in my blog, and I love the content of this blog – it’s what I use to motivate myself to keep going, but Australia is a stretch! Here goes nothing (or everything!)

  23. MarketingGal says:

    Oh my goodness, it sounds like HEAVEN ! I wish I could ditch the kids long enough to even go on a dream trip like this ( not really, I love them to death) ! Good luck to all of you who have entered, have a little extra fun for the single mom who’s grounded at home !

  24. chez says:

    wow! the picture looks great, I’ve never been to Australia, if given the chance to be there i would make it more memorable and more colorful just like the colors under the sea of of the great barrier reef.

  25. Kate says:

    I’ll follow the winners with awe and envy but thats my due date and while I love Australia, I dont’ want to accidently have and Austrialian baby. Great idea for a contest!

  26. Anton says:

    That sounds awesome. Reminds me my recent trip to Dominican: coral reef, zip-line :)
    I was just wondering how safe is it regards wild life. I mean there are deadly jelly-fish not mentioning sea predators at Australian coast, so how really dangerous it may be?

    • Vi says:

      jelly fish season is from November until May/June in tropical Queensland, but it is mainly in shallow waters, so it shouldn’t be a problem for snorkeling or diving near outer reef.

  27. Shiko says:

    There seems to be a problem with the entry form. The page is blank unlike 2 days ago. Are there alternatives ways to submit entry? Thanks

  28. Tom Treanor says:

    This is a great idea for a contest. I think it’s a huge win for everyone – the Queensland Tourism Board, Problogger and of course, the bloggers. I entered. Why not? Sounds awesome.

  29. Ravi says:

    Thanks Darren for putting this together. Reading about it has been great. One request, is it possible to add a section to the form “addition relevant information”. Thanks a lot. Wishing you the best.

  30. Zac Johnson says:

    Not only would this be the trip of a life time, it would also be amazing to blog and document the whole trip. Amazing opportunity!

  31. I just sent in my entry!

    Although I’m fortunate to count many Aussies amongst my good friends, I have yet to visit your beautiful continent. It would be a great honor to promote its enchantments as well as learn a thing or two from ProBlogger.

    Thank you for this wonderful opportunity Mr. Rowse!

  32. Marc says:

    What a great idea, and what a wonderful opportunity! If only I had more holidays ;-( … I’m sure the participants will learn a lot. Oh, the envy :-)

  33. stephen says:

    thats a great idea, oh and one more thing. Is there anything on this blog about finding a good topic to blog about and desgning your blog?

  34. Vern says:

    Entered! You got me with the ’1 in 40 chance’ line – lol.

  35. Heidi says:

    That is seriously cool! Good luck to the entrants.

  36. What an exciting opportunity for bloggers! Thanks, Darren for putting this together for the talented and lucky 10! I hope I’m one of them–I’m working on my application now!

  37. Jessica Lee says:

    I’m not sure if I entered or not. When I clicked submit, a blank screen appeared… Please let me know if you got my entry. If not I will submit again. I am really keen to go!

  38. I am entered and thrilled to be representing these slightly rare yet highly relevant groups:
    * video bloggers
    * women bloggers
    * scuba diving bloggers
    * 50-something bloggers, bringing that awesome boomer audience who loves to travel

    All wrapped up with ribbon of social media skills. How terrific to have a week of just doing this.

    Hugs to you Darren and many thanks to the mates at Queensland Tourism!

  39. I just entered! I hope I squeaked in under the deadline. I was too nervous to calculate the time difference. Fingers crossed! I want to win so bad!!!

  40. Gwen says:

    This is amazing! I’d sure love to win a spot, but even if I don’t win, just filling out the form was time to sit and think about the impact I *could* have with what I write. :)

  41. Amy says:

    Good luck to everyone! I live in Cairns, QLD the heart of this destination. Are you running an event where locals can attend and meet everyone? I’m very new to blogging and would absolutely love this.

  42. Tom Hyatt says:

    Where ever I shoot, my goal is to capture the moment. So whoever sees that image now, a week from now, or years from now, can feel the emotion in that picture. If went, you an your readers would feel and experience it with me.

  43. Laurie says:

    I entered this contest earlier today, but wanted to comment here mostly just to say thanks for the idea of creating a list of things I’d be comfortable endorsing. I received a great pitch earlier today, well-crafted, but it still isn’t a product I’m ready to endorse, and this helps me put words to that. I better go create my list of appropriate products or concepts so I’m ready for future pitches. Queensland is at the very top of that list, I know that much!

  44. Molly says:

    Trying to confirm if my entry to this contest was received. I just got a “…has been saved…” page after submitting. Is that the confirmation that it was received?

  45. Koundeenya says:

    Waiting for this. After reading this post, i looked for some pics of Queensland on google. the place is really awesome. I wish i win it

  46. I don’t think you would be able to get me on a plane to come back. The Reef of course but the entire continent has wonders that don’t exist anywhere else. You could spend a lifetime shooting and not scratch the surface. What would I shoot and talk about? Shorter answer is, what wouldn’t I?

  47. Steph says:

    I SO WANNA WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I submitted yesterday! :)

  48. This is such and amazing opportunity, I could totally capture every single moment from a parents perspective. Queensland seems like a wonderful family vacay, so glad I entered!

  49. Entered, itchy to hear about winners, hoping I’m one. I’ve written, photographed, videoed, twittered and otherwise spent 15 years working online almost entirely focused on Tourism, and this would be my dream vacation of all time. I know I could generate some excellent coverage – but I would love to learn from you and the other bloggers how to take a fresh look at my work and take it to the next level. I’ve been plateaued for a while and there are so many distractions…. what I wouldn’t give to be able re-rubik’s cube my business!

  50. Great! I just completed writing my board exams and look for a vacation and what a timing, i found this :D