1200x628 2021 Bestofec Rulesregulations

More and more, the Emerald Coast is exhibiting a distinctive, local flair and infectious energy — from the bright facades of progressive businesses to the beaches lined with welcoming lounge chairs and the full tables at our favorite eateries.

Life along the Emerald Coast is further enhanced by businesses and professionals committed to delivering quality products and experiences, exemplary customer service and inviting environments. When you think of the word “best,” you might recall the mouthwatering meal you bragged about to out-of-towners, the spot you look forward to all week for Friday-night drinks, the suit that was tailored to perfection or the comfort you received from a caring physician.
So let your positive experiences reflect on the businesses that serve you best by voting for them in the annual “Best of the Emerald Coast” awards.

You can see the full list of categories for our annual readers poll each year when it’s published in the June–July issue of Emerald Coast Magazine and online at EmeraldCoastMagazine.com on June 1.

Best of the Emerald Coast Rules

To preserve the integrity of the voting process, the following contest rules must be observed in order to cast a ballot and ensure it is included in the voting tabulation process:

  • Voting for the 2021 Best of Emerald Coast honors will take place online OR via print ballot found in the June/July 2021 issue of Emerald Coast Magazine.
  • All online and printed ballot votes will be combined for final tabulations.
  • Ballots must have votes marked in at least 10 categories in order to be counted.
  • All votes must be for locally owned Emerald Coast-area businesses. Locally owned and operated companies are defined as the owner or managing partner living in the Emerald Coast area or within a 30-mile radius of the Emerald Coast.
  • No incentives, prizes, goods or services may be offered in exchange for votes.
  • Ballots submitted via mail must be postmarked by June 20, 2021.
  • Ballots submitted online must be submitted by June 30, 2021, at 11:59 p.m.
  • Each vote must be submitted by one verified email address.
  • Obvious attempts at ballot stuffing or cheating will be disqualified.
  • A business can win the “Best of” award in no more than one category. If a business is the leading vote-getter in more than one category, that business will win only the “Best of” award for the one category in which it received the most votes.
  • Any winning business must be in good standing with Rowland Publishing, Inc. and still in operation by the date of the results printed in the magazine in order to be promoted as a “Best of” winner.
  • Once ballots are counted, all tabulations are final.

2018 Best of the Emerald Coast FAQs

Each year, Emerald Coast Magazine celebrates close to a hundred businesses throughout our community that have been singled out by our readers as the best of the best. We have always been transparent about this readers choice poll and how it works, but for those who might be new to the process, here are the answers to some of the more commonly asked questions about “Best of.”


How are Emerald Coast Magazine’s “Best of” winners selected?

The readers of Emerald Coast Magazine choose the winners.

Readers will be asked to visit EmeraldCoastMagazine.com/best-of-the-emerald-coast to complete the ballot by June 30, 2021 or fill out one print ballot on original Emerald Coast Magazine paper and postmarked by June 20, 2021.

Each ballot must have votes marked in at least 10 categories to be counted. Votes arriving after the deadline are not counted. Refer to the rules listed above.

Who counts the votes and decides the winner?

Emerald Coast Magazine contracts with a third party to count the votes and determine the winner.

Do you have to buy an ad in the magazine to win?

Absolutely not. Our winners include advertisers as well as non-advertisers.

Can someone “stuff” the ballot box?

No. Only ballots submitted via one verified email address are accepted. The software rejects faux email addresses and has a multi-layered authentication security approach to ensure legitimacy.

Who is eligible?

The readers decide whom they want to honor. Locally owned and operated companies are defined as such: the owner or managing partner living in Bay County through Escambia County or within a 30 mile radius of the Emerald Coast area.

How are categories decided?

The categories are revisited each year, and we welcome reader suggestions.

What do Best of winners get?

Winners earn the prestige of being selected by a majority of our readers. They also get a listing in the magazine, usage of the “Best of” logo for a year, discounted advertising rates, an award to showcase in their establishment, invitation to the exclusive winners party and two complimentary tickets to the “Best of” celebration on October 16, 2021 at Grand Boulevard at Sandestin.

Results are published annually in the October/November issue of Emerald Coast Magazine and online at EmeraldCoastMagazine.com when that issue publishes. Have questions about Best of the Emerald Coast or interested in sponsorship opportunities? Contact McKenzie Burleigh for more information.

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