And the winners are……..

The BIG Kolibri Expeditions Give-Away has some winners

Eye-ringed Thistletail - Special endemic bird of Satipo road

To stimulate eco-tourism in new areas still at large undiscovered by birders and to support the local communities in these areas, I made this first social media PR experiment for birders giving away 15 birding trips in Peru to the same areas. Read about the back-ground here…….

The  birders mentioned at the bottom of this post  have spread the word on various social media platforms, some of them general such as Twitter and Facebook, while others more specific for birders such as listservers and forums.

The above post has got 3000 hits since Dec 12 and is the most popular of all my blog posts since my blog started (seriously) a year ago.  A big hugg to all of you for making this such a fantastic event.

40 participants!

In the end I had 40 names in consideration, so in reality the chance of winning a tour was extremely high. Those that did not make it all the way in large did not have large enough networks on the internet, or simply in several cases gave up too early and did not send in a final activity report. Others that I certainly considered when they first contacted me and by professional merits seemed to qualify immediately, just disappeared and in some cases did not even bother to subscribe to the newsletter.  Connectivity and emails lost in Cyberspace  may have played trickes in some cases. I have checked my spam boxes just in case, but there may still be lost emails out there.

Many young birders

I noticed quite early that I got many requests from quite young birders. Many had excellent social media skills, but admitted not the economic means to take a organized trip to Peru. It made me very happy to see that there is a new generation of young birders out there – and I decided to ear-mark several slots for young birders. However, in the end I am unsure of the actual age of several of the winners, but I still hope I could pin down a few of the young birders.

Lack of Social Media skills

So while I ceertainly am very happy with the final results in this excersise, I wonder if we should not have had more than just 40 contestants, considering there were 3000 page views. I am looking forward to see your comments below why there were not more people wanting to part?  Was it because birders in general don’t have enough Social Media skills? I believe this could be the case, so I am pondering on the idea of maybe offering a social media workshop for birders.  Would you be interested?

I made the same question on my Facebook and immediately got the question: What is Social Media? So just in case – here is my answer: Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, Listservers, Forums, Flickr, StumbleUpon, DIGG, YouTube, etc.

The offical launch for the social media workshop for birders will be presented tomorrow with start around Jan 10, 2010 (to be confirmed)

Too good to be true!

I had some reactions that obviously is not favoring the cause. These words have been mentioned: Scam, Spam, Ponzi Scheme, fraud, too good to be true…etc.

How do you think this campaign has affected the company? Good or bad?  It can’t be good for us if people think we are scamming birders!

It is not very easy to give away something without some sort of catch. But there is really not much of a catch. Just let others know about. The alturistic message is to promote community based eco-tourism in new areas. This will be good for conservation.  My company and I, get some exposure, which could/should lead to more sales. I also get 21 ambassadors (15 free trips and 6 bloggers already confirmed). That is very valuable to us!

How does it work financially for Kolibri Expeditions?

You will see from the price structure, that both trips are cheaper priced than our ordinary trips – and on top of that we are giving away a free space.  It is true that the costs of operation is somewhat smaller, but there is also an operational risk involved. Since there is lack of infra-structure and communication problems with the areas, no client shall expect things to be top-notched.  Both areas are difficult to sell among our regular programs as they are neither established and lack comfort.  By offering free trips of only 8 days, it is hoped that many of the winners as well as participants in these trips will take other programs with us. We shall not lose any money by operating these trips, but the revenue lies with selling some of our extensions.

From the communities standpoint they get the chance of doing things right from the beginning, because there will be a stream of birders coming every month. This continuity is vital to the success of this idea.

The winners are……..

No more beating around the bush….here they are. The winners:

Joel Brady-Power
Alan McBride
Kimberly Sucy
Jan Axel Cubilla
Bill Lynch
Greg Grant McCreary
Brian Allen
Radd Icenogle
Rob Ripma
Vernon Laux
Isaac Grant
Chris West
John Riutta
Chris Drysdale
Scott Artis

Congratulations all of you!!! Please resend me your preferred dates ( so I can put each in the calendar. In the next post I shall make the justification of my choices as well as designate each winner with a slot.  Now, please all winners, tell the world that this was not a scam – and invite your friends to join you paying their fare (which is quite reasonable compared to many other trips we and others offer.)

Everyone’s a winner!

Getting this sort of engagement, is extremely valuable. So I would like to offer those that have taken part a special offer, which was delivered in the  newsletter today. The offer is only available to those that were subscribed before the end of Dec 25.


There were a few people that were in consideration until very late, but I just ran out of slots. Many of them were highly qualified. With small adjustments they could have won a trip.  I will contact each personally with comments. It will take a few days, so please bare with me.

Thanks again all of you for taking part in this somewhat historic PR event in birding circles. Future will tell if we do it again!

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