How to win your Theme Madness 2011 Trophy


We have seen a lot of great feedback and excitement since announcing the Theme Madness 2011 project last week. In short, we’re holding a just-for-fun competition between 64 different WordPress theme shops, as well as a bracket competition (something akin to the USA’s March Madness in fact) to reward those who can anticipate the winners of each round.

We did receive a few questions about the whole thing, and hope that this post will clarify the rules, just how the whole game will play out, and most importantly: how you can win yourself a trophy. First things first, though: if you haven’t seen the Theme Madness announcement yet, go read that first!

Filling out a bracket could win you a trophy

The real fun of all of this will be filling out the brackets as teams win (and lose) and tracking your own guesses along the way. Anyone can fill out a Theme Madness bracket (for free), so you should take a minute to do so if you haven’t already.

We will accept one bracket per person, and we stop accepting brackets on April 10th. We have to, since the games begin on April 11th (Round 1 game schedule below).

At the end of all the games, when the points are tallied and a victor is, well, victorious, we’ll determine who sent in the most accurate bracket and award them the coveted WPCandy trophy. If there is a tie (which would be nuts), the first person who turned in the bracket will win. So don’t hesitate to fill yours out!

Being the winning team will win you a trophy

One thing I’ve noticed, and have always been happy about, is the healthy competitive spirit amongst WordPress theme shops. Theme Madness will, hopefully, put that healthy competitive spirit to the test. Whichever WordPress theme company wins will receive their own WPCandy trophy, and champion status for all time. Or at least until we play again next year.

So how does a theme shop win? How are the games played? I’m very glad you asked.

Each game will take place over 48 hours to give everyone an ample chance to weigh in on the victor. During these 48 hours, the game will be played at home and away.

The away game will be here and on Twitter. Participants will be able to vote in a poll we host here, as well as comment in the post itself to add to the team’s total. Anyone on Twitter will be able to vote using the #wpmadness hashtag, a link to the poll, and the name of the team they’d like to win.

The home game is just as fun: each competitor can post on their own blog, inviting fans to comment their vote of support there as well. In total, between the home and away games, this gives each fan a potential four votes for your team.

Just to recap, if you want your favorite team to win you can:

  1. Vote in the poll on WPCandy.
  2. Comment on the poll on WPCandy.
  3. Mention the poll and the team you choose on Twitter using the #wpmadness hashtag.
  4. Comment on the team’s blog post (if they put one up).

That’s four total votes that you can deliver to the team you want to win.

At the end of 48 hours we’ll count up the votes and announce the victors of each round on the blog.]

Round 1 Game Schedule

The schedule for Round 1 is below, so you know when to prep your teams. Each game will run from 12:00am EST the day the games begin, and will run until 11:59pm EST the next day.

Bracket ABracket BBracket CBracket D
April 26AppThemes vs. Graph Paper Press

Elegant Theme vs. iThemes
ThemeForest vs. ThemeGarden

Mojo Themes vs. WPZoom
StudioPress vs. Theme Hybrid

Catalyst Theme vs. DIYThemes
Obox Themes vs. Pro Theme Design

Press75 vs. ThemeFuse
May 2To be determinedTo be determinedTo be determinedTo be determined
May 4To be determinedTo be determinedTo be determinedTo be determined

We’ll post the schedule for Round 2 after Round 1 is complete, but you can expect it to follow a similar schedule as above. If you have any questions about things will go down on game day, just say so in the comments and we’ll let you know.

How will you win a trophy?

I’m actually asking this question of both bracket submissions and the players themselves. We’ve seen around 100 bracket submissions and growing (which is awesome) and are wondering: what’s your strategy when choosing who wins? Have you carefully mapped your choices out, or have you chosen based on the prettier logos?

If you’re one of the 64 teams competing, what’s your strategy for bringing the trophy home? Have you let your fans know about it yet, and to plan for it? Have they submitted brackets with you victorious in the end? Share your battle strategies in the comments below.

11 thoughts on “How to win your Theme Madness 2011 Trophy

  1. Good idea on the concept of the competition.

    One more thing why I like this competitition is now I realized there are many themeshops that I’ve never heard before, should check ’em out!

  2. Well I’m glad you’re running this Ryan, it’s easy to see I didn’t have a clue on what March Madness was until you explained all that above! — What I love is the whole home and away aspect of it all, I suppose I better get my predictions in before my services may be called upon to assist with the counting? 😉

    May the best person, and theme company, win!

  3. My main criteria is choosing are the quality of themes, its usability and support, the pricing structure. There are some theme shops which I absolutely adore so they obviously have won their brackets. There have been conflicts in some cases 🙂 Among the new shops which I discovered, the first look mattered a lot. If I didnt find the site attractive I didnt proceed. Few sites were designed alright but their pricing was exorbitant so I didnt select them.

  4. I am starting a hosting and web design computer related products, I have chosen WordPress as my software and I have allot to learn. It is hard to find an company to buy themes from with the diversity of companies. I guess I just pick on out of a hat and go till you find one, that will support a start up effort with out looking like a start up effort.

  5. I’m familiar with all 64 “teams” in the bracket, but it still took me a good 2-3 hours to really think my picks through. (Which is longer than it took to do my NCAA bracket…) Of course, I probably over-thunk everything, as usual. It wouldn’t surprise me if one of the whichever-logo-is-prettier entrants wins the whole thing.

    Personally I thought the toughest group was the “Northeast region” (Studiopress, Thesis, Headway, etc). Reminds me of the year Duke, UCONN, Kentucky, Florida and Kansas were in the same regional bracket.

  6. Honest to God, I don’t know much about the themes…. I’ve just always done my own. I used a scientific algorithm to combine numerous parameters, such as devs who I know/respect, and pretty sites/logos to come up with my sure-to-win selection!

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