Some pageants require a platform. For those who do not know, a platform is a topic or organization that a contestant chooses to support and advocate for. There are all different types of platforms ranging from promoting girl scouts to appreciating the elderly to feeding America’s children to strengthening the family to promoting STEM to promoting the arts, etc… hopefully you get the idea, the options are seemingly infinite. If you do choose to compete in a system that has a platform, you will surely be asked about it in your interview (which we all know is the most important part). If you are going to take the time to prepare for your interview with the books, it is worth your time to choose your platform wisely.
So you’re wondering how in the world you are going to pick one platform issue. Easy! Follow these tips to find a platform that you will be able to articulately discuss in your pageant interview.
Just like they say “location, location, location” in Real Estate, in pageants, we say “Passion, Passion, Passion”. The most important thing you can do for your pageant career concerning your platform is picking a platform that you are passionate about. What is something you will not mind waking up early on Saturday morning to promote? Hopefully, when you are picking your platform, you are thinking long term. So think about if this is a platform you will want to be promoting in a few years.
Make it personal. If you decide to pick appreciating the elderly as your platform and a judge asks you why you chose your platform and all you have to say for yourself is that you saw the idea on the blog, you might as well just not interview at all- because you are possibly the most boring contestant of all time. Come on! I’m sure you can think of a time in your life when you saw an elderly person being underappreciated. Think of a story that pertains to your platform. Get really good at telling it. That’s half the battle in your interview.
Next, think of a creative name. Maybe even think of a pun! For example, Miss America’s Outstanding Teen 2016, Allie Nault’s platform is Making Sen$e. Rather than her platform title being something like teaching America’s children to be fiscally responsible, her title is far more interesting. Don’t call your platform exactly what it is- give it a fun name.
Next step: pick an organization to partner with. This will be so useful to have in your pageant interview. It will give you mentors, events to attend, and connections to make. If I could give my younger pageant self a piece of advice, it would be to pick a platform that has an organization I can connect with and work with.
Goals. As with every area of competition, make realistic and achievable goals for your platform. If you are not sure where to start, ask yourself, “what do I want to be able to tell the judges I have done with my platform?” The answer to that question leaves you with a great place to start.
Lastly, it’s time to get out in your community and make a difference. Cliché, I know. But it really is true! Create a Facebook page, put on an event, attend an event, and chase after your platform goals whole heartedly. This passion and dedication will come across to the judges in your interview and get you one step closer to the crown. Want to learn more?
Read this book for extra pointers when it comes to picking your platform.