4 Key Mistakes Of A Social Media Competition

My last post was about ” The 7 Secrets to Ford’s Social Media Marketing Success” which was primarily about the success of the Ford Fiesta Project’s social media competition. What impressed me about the Ford Fiseta Project social Media Marketing campaign was the targeting and involvement of the 100  “Socially Vibrant” participants. This enabled the  competition using social media to be amplified and awareness increased through the online social media hyperactivity of the participants throughout the entire campaign.

Today I wanted to write a post about other case studies on successful social media competitions.. (that will now be my next post).. because on coming across the “Best Bottom In The World Contest”, I discovered a case study revealing  an example of how not to run a social media campaign by “not” including social media in the marketing mix in an effective optimized manner.

Contest: Best Bottom In The World

Company: American Apparel

1. They spent a lot of money on Mass Media and reached out to large publications instead, to post the news and promote their competition. – Expensive! (Ford didn’t spend one dollar on a traditional marketing until just prior to the launch of the US Fiesta production model).

These large publications include:

  1. Style List
  2. The Frisky
  3. New York Fashion

2. They didn’t reach out to personal fashion bloggers niche such as Fashion Toast.

She is a hugely trafficked fashion blog who advertises on her sidebar for American Apparel.  Furthermore, she is well connected to the other fashion bloggers online, so there is a strong way to leverage her sponsorship to influence others to participate.

3. Facebook Not Optimized For The Competition

Theyshould have created a Facebook Application that allows fan to upload their image directly to the FB page.  Fans can then vote through the Facebook Fan Page and tell their community who they voted for.

Their expensive mass media competition is not anywhere to be found on the Facebook page, which by the way has 193,000 Fans, who are not offered an easy way to spread the competition virally via Face book with its 400 Million members.

4. Minimal Use Of Twitter

They made an announcement on Twitter, but they could have made it so much more engaging, such as a  Twit Pic Submission. Twitter users should be able to upload an image directly from Twit pic to the AA main site.  In this way, they could generate more buzz from the Twitter community and allow for an easier submission process.

To their credit American Apparels use of YouTube seems to be more  effective for the competition with Channel Views of 33,607 and total Upload Views of 365,982

So how would you run a Social Media competition for your company?

Comments

  • http://quinnandco.com Florence Quinn

    Jeff, thanks for another great edu-blog. Only you can turn a bad exmple into a learning experience. PS: We are the U.S. PR firm behind Tourism Queensland’s global social-media blockbuster THE BEST JOB IN THE WORLD campaign. I’d be happy to share that case study with you if you like. All best, Florence

    • http://jeffbullas.com jeffbullas

      Hi Florence Thanks for your comment. That would be great if you can share the case study. :)

      • http://www.imponna.com Jay

        Did this case study eventuate? I’d love to hear some ‘behind the scenes’ on the Qld campaign.

        Jay

  • http://skril.com Greg Melton

    Jeff,

    This is great advice. Facebook changed the rules last year about how contests are operated within Facebook. I’m not sure, but this maybe played a part in the way they used the site. I couldn’t agree more about not using Twitter effectively.

    We launched into beta last week a platform for creating online contests. You may also be interested in visiting http://skril.com.

    The service is currently free and there are no limits to the number of entries and/or the duration of the contest. We also verify email addresses from entrants.

    Contest organizers can setup a contest which allows entrants to login via Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Google Friend Connect, LinkedIn, Yahoo, Digg, or FriendFeed OAuth.

    Would love to hear your feedback if you have the time.

    Thanks,
    Greg

  • http://www.worldbreakingrecords.blogspot.com sonali sen

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  • http://www.teampr.com Ellie Becker

    This is something i see across the board — contest or not. Companies think they’re ok if they ‘have’ a Facebook page or Twitter account. So many just don’t yet understand how to integrate and use today’s tools — social and traditional — to improve marketing reach, leverage, ROI.

    Education and lessons learned — including your eye-opening case study posts — are the name of the game as the marketing world continues to evolve.

  • http://exurbaninc.com ted

    thanks for sharing. Sometimes what not to do, or things to avoid are more helpful than what to do.
    Also, great example of an eye-catching tweet to draw a user in. Well done.

  • http://www.twitter.com/TerranceCharles Terrance Charles

    Cool case study Jeff, that’s one of the biggest problems I see, not optimizing the right things at the right time. Everything have to be in place ready and used to pick up the other and keep that viral buzz going or else your only reaching one side of your potential visitors and leaving them to find the rest.

  • http://nashandassociates.com Brian Nash

    Jeff – nice post and point taken. The whole issue of how, where and when for a campaign is still a bit confusing and daunting – but – posts like this sure start me thinking (at least) in the right direction.

  • http://twitter.com/TonyKochAUS Tony Koch

    Thanks Jeff. The education continues… there are certainly lessons to be learnt.

  • http://twitter.com/tinatinatinah Tina Hoang

    Thanks Jeff!

    To help marketers who are planning to run an online contest, here’s an essential checklist: http://www.strutta.com/blog/blog/social-media-marketing-an-online-contest-checklist

    Not surprisingly, many marketers are eager to run contests in social media. However, the amount of planning and attention it takes to run a great contest campaign is often underestimated. This is why mistakes happen, and why I put a collection of best practices together in a checklist.

    Hopefully with your above examples and linked checklist in hand, we’ll see more wins and less mistakes!

    I invite any questions on the topic – I deal with contests daily at my work http://strutta.com – a whole lot of awesome contests are built on our platform. :)

    Tina

    • http://twitter.com/HaloBizNZ Halo Biz

      @de7b00b0429efaba56d56e0df5732da5:disqus Thanks for this – I’m in throes of putting together a SM campaign as part of company launch so your information valuable.
      @tinahoang:disqus Thanks for your checklist – I’ll definitely use it :-)

  • http://twitter.com/tinatinatinah Tina Hoang

    Thanks Jeff!

    To help marketers who are planning to run an online contest, here’s an essential checklist: http://www.strutta.com/blog/blog/social-media-marketing-an-online-contest-checklist

    Not surprisingly, many marketers are eager to run contests in social media. However, the amount of planning and attention it takes to run a great contest campaign is often underestimated. This is why mistakes happen, and why I put a collection of best practices together in a checklist.

    Hopefully with your above examples and linked checklist in hand, we’ll see more wins and less mistakes!

    I invite any questions on the topic – I deal with contests daily at my work http://strutta.com – a whole lot of awesome contests are built on our platform. :)

    Tina

  • http://www.manorhallsoapcompany.com Susan Mann

    Another great post filled with value, Jeff. I’m overdosing on all your tweets at the moment. I’m recently new to social media, and it’s one huge learning curve for me. Thank you so much!

  • Lanceoj

    A friend of mine worked on the Ford Fiesta business, the urban side. They did a great job

  • Molly Porter

    Ugh, I would say having a contest about bottoms was the first mistake.