To ensure challenges that all run as successfully and smoothly as possible, we wanted to share with you some tips and guidelines for creating and running the best challenges you can. Our number 1 goal is creating and managing awesome challenges that are exhilarating, fun and inspiring! 

Please note, the option to manage challenges is visible on the web version only (not on the apps).

What is the Goal of a great challenge?  

When creating challenges, it’s always best to think about what is best for the members as well as Gurus! Balance is key. remember - a good challenge for members is a good challenge for you. You probably want an interesting challenge. But you also need a fair amount of participants for the challenge to succeed.

A great challenge should inspire, challenge and excite other users. Keeping your topic reasonably broad but relevant will help to ensure the maximum amount of people enter.

Having an unsuccessful challenge will result in not enough people joining in and old photos being recycled rather than fresh content - this results in low votes and less entertaining competition. 

Examples of successful themes - ‘Mostly White’ or ‘The Beauty Of Nature’ or ‘Black and White Portraits’. 

A great topic is something accessible to everyone who may want to join. 

We do our best to ensure that challenges are as fun as possible for everyone. 

The Challenge Filter

Remember, the more specific a challenge - the fewer people will be able to access it and fewer people will be relevant on the theme - unaccessible themes are likely to be rejected. 


  • Accessible challenge: Dogs

  • Less accessible: Dogs in hats

  • Not accessible: ‘Dogs in hats in the snow’.

Theme Checklist

Is it Accessible?

Is it easy to understand?

Is it fun?

Is it worth joining? 

What kind of edits is GS allowed to do to challenges? 

Any edits done by GS are done to ensure a fun and accessible challenge that is as successful as possible. Here are some ways we may assist or edit the challenge.

  • Edit title - We try to help make sure the title is clear, sensible and short.  

  • Edit description - Descriptions must be easy to understand. 

  • Change cover photo - Cover photos should be relevant to the theme of the challenge, high quality and fit required proportions

  • Change timing/duration - We will help to make sure the time limit fits the challenge. 

  • Determine type - GS will be responsible for challenge types, i.e. speed/standard, etc.

  • Set prizes - GS manages all challenge prizes 

  • Cancel - Should a challenge not perform as expected within a set time frame, it may be canceled - to date, this has never happened.  

  • For the benefit of the community, GS may revoke the right to run challenges from a Guru

Communication with members

  • Due to time constraints, we will only contact members if necessary.

  • If you need to connect with GS, this is best done via the support desk. 

  • While we do not suggest you wait for us to contact you, we may do so if it is necessary.


  • GS opens approx 450 challenges each month.

  • We always do our utmost best to ensure an optimal mix of challenges that are fun, exciting and accessible to everyone. 

  • The waiting queue is managed to ensure the best results and a stream of diverse challenges. For this reason, the wait may vary from challenge to challenge - The more interesting and accessible the challenge, the more chance of it being published in a timeous fashion.  

  • Challenge themes are spread out and staggered in a way that avoids challenges from becoming tired, overlapping or repetitive.

  • At the moment we are trying out our new bidding system which allows you to run challenges proposed by GuruShots.

    This feature is part of a slow rollout so only a number of Gurus have this option currently.
    We are constantly adding more Gurus to try out the new bidding system until it reaches everyone.

Challenge Tips

  • Niche challenges will often have very low voter turnout. 

  • Your theme should be as clear and communicative as possible.

  • Challenges must be as suitable and accessible for as many users as possible.

  • Fresh themes are always welcomed, as long as they are not too niche.

  • No curse words, porn or questionable imagery - Ever

  • Enforceable - Themes should be easy to control in terms of the accuracy of submissions. (Eg. No photoshop - cannot be enforced) 

  • You are free to be clear on your requirements for Guru’s Pick 

Challenge Title

  • Informative - Keep it clear and simple.

  • Short - To the point, punchy and quick to take in.

  • Clear - A clear theme title will help contribute to the overall success of your challenge.  

  • Unfortunately, many people don’t read the description - For this reason, a clear title is an effective one.

Challenge Description

  • Short - Keep it precise and to the point - short and sweet description is more likely to be read.

  • Clear - The more clear your description, the more on-topic submissions will be. 

  • No bad language - Ever.

Guru Picks

  • Pick a total of 100 photos.

  • It's preferable to choose Top Pick Winner up to 2 hours before the challenge closes.

  • No porn/spam/abusive/offensive picks - we have a zero-tolerance approach to this. 

  • GuruShots does not condone the abuse of power - Giving picks in an unsporty or unfair manner may result in a guru being banned from running challenges.

  • We may remove a pick if it does not align with the general theme or is not appropriate. 

  • Choose excellent photos - as a Guru it is up to you to ensure that the photos you select 

represent the quality you would expect from the GS community.

Cover Image

  • Cover photo must be as high quality as possible - we will not publish bad photos on challenges.

  •  GuruShots has a zero-tolerance for copyright issues. if the cover you upload doesn't belong to you. Note that if you have photos that don't belong to you risk being banned from running challenges and expelled from the platform.

  • Relevant to the challenge title & theme. 

  • Your cover photo should be the first point of inspiration for members who want to join your challenge -  A good cover photo will help to attract people to your challenge!

  • Mind the varying display proportions as displayed on the cover in your challenge editor - This will ensure your picture looks as good across all platforms, 

  • Natural frame - No border, over-processing.

  • Basic image guidelines No illustration/3d rendering allowed.

  • Family-friendly. No porn/spam/abusive/offensive - We take a zero-tolerance approach to this.  

  • While it is unlikely, if necessary, we may need to switch the cover image - Should this happen, you will be notified.