I just got off the phone with the fine folks at FNBO Direct. We recorded our first group podcast for the Pay Yourself First Challenge. If you’re a new reader, check out my post on getting into the top 5, as well as my video entry, for more info. Anyway, the call reminded me that I need to share some photos with you of the official kick-off we had a couple of weekends ago. I’ll also throw in a little more detail about the contest itself.
Kick Off Weekend
In order to meet all the contestants face-to-face, take promotional photos and videos, as well as provide some basic contest training, FNBO Direct flew the five finalists to Omaha (First National Headquarters) for an official kick-off to the six month long contest. Basically we were treated like rock-stars for a few days. Here are a few of the highlights:
“Where’s my cappuccino!?” Here I am at the studio getting my hair and makeup done. So diva.
The five PYF Challenge contestants getting last minute touch-ups on the studio floor. There was a lot of time spend just hanging around chatting like this throughout the weekend. We all got to know each other pretty well.
Liz Weston and PT. I was able to chat with Liz quite a bit during our down time on Friday and Saturday. I’m looking forward to her expert opinions throughout the contest. Check out my review of Liz’s book, Easy Money.
One of the shots was taken in front of a vintage bank vault. Here’s Liz encouraging us to steal money to meet our savings goals. 😉
There was also a lot of video footage shot to be used for press releases aimed at local and national media. This is in downtown Omaha. Beautiful city and some great weather made for a fun day. Apparently I look better from the ground up.
We had a contestant training session in the FNBO Direct offices where we learned more specifics on the contest requirements (blogging, podcasts, press interaction, etc.) and how to come up with our savings goals.
A tour of the swank executive floor at the FNBO Direct headquarters.
The five finalists. All very impressive people. You’ll enjoy learning more about their stories throughout the contest I’m sure. All for one, and one for all. Cheese.
The Pay Yourself First Challenge
Okay, the best way I know how to describe the challenge itself is it’s a six month “online” version of a reality show contest. Where the goal is to demonstrate the most personal finance prowess in reaching your savings goals. The grand prize is a $7,500 vacation. But each of the five finalist get up to $5,000 in matched savings. So, we’re all sort of winners already.
FNBO Direct will launch the complete contest website (www.pyfchallenge.com) sometime in early October. The site will focus around the five contestant’s profiles and will track our individual savings goals. Each contestant will have an individual blog (which you’ll be able to subscribe to) and profile page. You’ll be able to follow along as we share our challenges and successes with saving towards our goals.
There will also be commentary on our efforts from Liz Weston and Rajive Johri, who are serving as the financial experts. Lastly, there will be a place for you to cast YOUR vote for each of the contestants. I think you will be able to vote (for me, of course) once a day.
At the end of the six months, FNBO Direct will declare a winner based on percentage of savings goal met, votes, financial experts opinion, and general participation in the contest.
Many people have been asking to see the other finalist’s videos. Here they are, all in one spot:
Alright, guys..thanks for letting me share this quick update on the contest. I’m glad to have you all coming along for the ride. Should be fun.