Recap: Contest Insights from Todd Bosma

An hour discussion and contest insights from Blazer’s Host and Game Director Todd Bosma. An engaging conversation with executives from the NBA, Major League Rugby, NFL, MLS, college sports and Minor League Baseball on the Mighty Game Ops Network.

Another Huddle Call on Plus is complete.  The topic was Briefing Contestants for Success with guest Todd Bosma from the Portland Trail Blazers.

Executives from the NBA, Major League Rugby, NFL, MLS and Minor League Baseball and college teams were participated in the discussion. Todd shared how he builds a contest from the initial meeting with their corporate team all the way to success on the court.

Todd serves as both the game director and host for the Blazers, so he brought a deep understanding of all the roles involved and excellent examples along the way.

Cudo:  Can you can you share how the process of how you guys, whether it’s a corporate partnership, how you build a contest from that from the ground up?

Todd Bosma: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, thankfully, we’ve got a great relationship here with our corporate partnership team. And I know that’s not the norm around the league, although I think it should be. We are very involved with our corporate partnership team and into the point where if they’re pitching ideas to some of their upcoming sponsors or whatnot, they’ll look us in earlier rather than later, because we all know sponsors would rather us just run a 30 second commercial for them up on the big screen

But that’s not engaging and not adding any value to the fans experience. So how can we cater a contest that is engaging for the fans is fun and also delivers that sponsor message and our twenty thousand people are going to want to care about it. We always look at it from that angle. And so we’ll start crafting a little bit of our contest, whether it be a shooting contest, whether it be something up on the big screen and sort of try to weave the sponsor message in an authentic way.

But then when it really comes down to it is how are we going to execute the contest? So we’re always thinking about what’s our plan? A that’s if the contest goes perfectly and we know that’s never the case. So what’s our plan B? Where do we go in case this goes sideways, C, D, E and F. We’ve always tried to go through all the alphabet and try to have all of our escape routes, depending on what happens during the course of the contest.

So we’ll brainstorm that and we’ll work through all those different things, because at the end of the day, we’re also the ones who are the ones facilitating it. So we’re looking at props. How do props get on and off the floor in an easy and quick time, setting things up, explaining the contest, running the contest, awarding prizes and getting crap off the floor all within two minutes. We have a really short time line. So try to make things somewhat easier on our game night crew because they’re the ones who are making it all happen

And once we have a final vision of what it looks like, we try to put it into practice. So we’ll do a game test day where we’ll take over the court on a dark day and we’ll practice our contests or we’ll try them out. And what’s more importantly is that we’ll put our sponsorship group out there. So there are contests. And so they have an understanding of how the contests work so they can accurately explain it to their sponsors and say this is how it goes and they can see how difficult or how easy, because at the end of the day, we want people to win now.

We don’t want people to win maybe every time, but we want people to win the contest. So we’ve got to make sure that it’s something that people can win and that it’s feasible within our two minutes and that it’s engaging and entertaining.

This week featured a lot of great tips and insights, especially for hosts and interactive squad members who are hands-on with contests and contestants.


Huddles are weekly Zoom meeting with a wide range of topics. These directed conversation features an expert guest and open engagement for people in the game operations industry who want to grow and network with others.  Our next call is Wednesday July 21st at 1pm EST with Guest Rob Wicall. This is our monthly mascot-focused call, looking at how your branding/character statement can shape everything you do.

You can join the call as Member of the Mighty Game Ops Network. We have a One Month Free Trail for everyone, you can sign up here.

And of course we talked about this promotion classic:

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Rolling in Dough

Sprinkle prizes on the floor and your contestant rolls around collecting the prizes within a determined time frame. Your fans will love to watch the contestant flail around the court in an attempt to collect the goods in this turnkey promotion.