Anil nails it. Instead of teaching clients how to 'game the system', SEO professionals should be helping their clients to create compelling content constantly which is what blogs do and which is why they have a high search rank. It ain't no mystery and it's unbelievable how some "SEO professionals" don't get it.
There were even some fairly detailed critiques that said I shouldn't have entered the contest because this isn't my business. I can understand the resistance to an outsider entering any community's contests, but I think that, though I did essentially enter the contest on a lark, it served to illustrate a larger point. MBA types like to say that the rail industry didn't understand it was in the transportation business, not the train business, and so lost out to the development of the interstate highways and air travel. That's an oversimplification, but the SEO industry does need to learn that its real business is in helping clients make information that's compelling enough that potential customers want to find it. Once they've created that information, it behooves them to make it as accessible and sharable as possible, and to provide affordance for easily keeping it up to date.
Publishing of interesting content that readers can share with each other, provide feedback on, and easily update? Hey, waitaminute... that is my business! And the comment that "Sadly, Dash put a cap on the amount of new information that this contest was going to generate." is just sad. A bunch of quitters are blaming me because they don't want to keep trying?
There's a part of me that's always felt that, if you're a professional at a certain trade, and I can come in as an amateur and do better than you, then you probably suck. Generally, it's an ethic that I'm reminded of when I see amateur hour at a comedy show or when I find myself in a low-end art gallery. "I could do better than this." If this is your trade and you can't beat someone who came in at the last minute to enter a contest that's gotten the attention of nearly everyone in your field, it's time to rethink your strategy.
My suggestions? Write good content. Develop an audience that cares about what you're doing. Do something that's relevant to people in your field.