In late August, Oops50 launched our first ever contest giving away two copies of the book, Master Class: Living Longer, Stronger and Happier by Peter Spiers, about creative retirement. And guess what? No one entered. No one. That translates to We suck at contests. So, I ask myself, is it just our failure at Oops50 to launch a contest or is it that we women baby boomers can’t get excited about a how-to-book on retirement? Believe me, I wish we could give way a week-end for two at Shoji Retreats, an outdoor Japanese style hot tub and massage spa in the beautiful mountains of Asheville, North Carolina. But, honestly girls, we’re just not there yet.
Ironically, since our miserable failure in promoting on-line contests, I happened to receive a link about that very subject from a Facebook friend. It seems, we need to hire James Wedmore who knows how to create kick-butt videos because the best on-line contests involve YouTube videos. Who knew? So, for all you out there contemplating a contest, the top 3 lessons are:
1. Motivate your audience. Oops, failed miserably.
The trick is to create an incentive that is strong enough to encourage your audience to take the time and effort to create a video. You don’t have to give away a new car, but a free supply of your product would be a great start.
2. Give customers a voice. Oops, do women over 50 go on YouTube a lot?
Start by uploading your own video to your YouTube channel explaining the rules and other details of your contest. Contestants can then upload their entries by leaving a “video response” under your video. A YouTube contest not only can provide value to your audience, but also show that you’re listening to them. You want to give your audience a voice so they can express themselves and not simply promote your business.
3. Cash in on the social capital. Oops!
If contestants know that views, likes and shares are key to winning, they will reach out to their friends for support — effectively spreading awareness about your brand at the same time. You also can encourage contestants to tap into their social networks to cast votes in your contest.
So, until we can figure out all of the above, we decided to give the books away to two of our faithful followers: Sal from Nevada and Jean and Va from Sheville.org.
Until our next contest…I’m signing off.