Wachovia Asks, “Who Would You Thank?”

You probably didn’t know this, but this week is National Customer Service Week. In honor of this über-obscure calendar event, Wachovia is throwing a Who Would You Thank promotion.

Here’s how it works. In 250 words or less, you tell Wachovia a unique and compelling story: who would you like to thank and why. If your entry is selected, Wachovia will “help bring your special thank you to life.”

What does that mean? Really, what can you win? Good question… Wachovia doesn’t make it easy to find out. In fact, you have to dig through their rules and regs to figure it out:

  • Grand Prize – Wachovia will attempt to create a “thank you” for the individual that the entrant named in their entry, up to a $10,000 limit. (Note: It’s really tough buying gifts for people — especially people you don’t know.)
  • 2nd Place Prize – Two winners will get a check for $5,000, ostensibly to create a gift for the person they want to thank.
  • 3rd Place Prize – Three winners will each receive a check for $2,500, again, intended for their special someone.
  • 4th Place Prize – Ten people get $1,000.

Total value of all prizes: $37,500.00.

Wachovia’s “panel of judges” will select the winners at the end of the month based on (1) uniqueness, (2) the good deeds of the person being thanked, and (3) the overall quality of the essay.

Key Question: Why can’t people read the entries and vote on them?

The unbranded and totally ugly online entry form is hosted by third-party partner, Insight Express. If phishing scammers can make something look branded, anyone can.

Sidebar: If Wachovia entered its own contest, everyone knows who they would thank. Both Wells Fargo and Citi will be on their Christmas list for sure this year.

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