27 June 2009


Contests are a great way to promote your product, service or brand - if done correctly.

In any marketing, be it an advertisement, a web page, a vehicle design, apparel, logo or a contest, the messaging and purpose has to be relevant and on brand. What you do in anything related to marketing must not stray from your brand motto or your brand's core beliefs.

Recently, we have been putting a contest together for our tiny, little boutique creative shop. The contest has a purpose - to promote the win of a creative award for the design and concept of a custom envelope and stamp. And, the contest is relevant - to win the contest, you have to collect the very thing that we won the award with - our custom stamps.

Structuring the contest this way informs people about the win and gets them to notice and focus on the envelopes and stamps that may have been background noise up until then. Our goal is to promote to our customers and people who deal with us that we are an award winning creative shop that specializes in out-of-the-box thinking and design.

You can read about this contest here.

The goal of a contest is not to give away a specific prize but to promote your offering or brand. If the prize does this, that's great but not every business can do this. In our case, we are awarding lunch for the winner and eleven of their closest friends, delivered by our staff. This will award the winner, but also allow for interaction with our staff and their staff.

You want to give something away that is meaningful and/or has some relevance.

Immersing people in your brand and having them engage with it makes for a successful campaign. Just having people enter to win with no interaction can be misguided unless you are collecting data to follow up with at a latter date.

At the end of the day, people need to remember what your offering is and what you do. When planning a contest, think about this carefully, will your contest accomplish this?

I think ours will.

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