Facebook Contest Done Right – Case Study

Facebook Contest Done Right – Case Study

Facebook Contest Case Study: Tusker Trail

This post updated April 30, 2015.

See the write up about this campaign on Search Engine Journal as well, How to Use Multi-Channel Marketing for Crowdsourcing.

Tusker Trail Facebook Contest Case Study


A Facebook contest is not hard to do but a successful one is. Crowdsourcing your Facebook contest is an entirely different thing. We had the pleasure of working with Tusker Trail on their Facebook contest and we want to share some of the details in the following case study.

Have you tried to do a Facebook contest only to spend a ton of time and generate very little in return? We have. We’ve done many contests for our clients, some more successful than others. Creating a successful Facebook contest requires a few main elements worth mentioning. Tusker Trail‘s crowdsourced Facebook contest went even further than just generating emails or increasing likes: they actually asked their online community what destination they should add to their trek list. Tusker Trail is now putting together their next adventure based on the results: Patagonia will be on their list of treks soon.

Key Elements of a Successful Facebook Contest

1. Start with your goals

In order to come up with a decent Facebook contest, you want to start with your goals first. Keep in mind that sometimes too many goals will create confusion and you won’t be able to achieve any of them. Keep your goals limited to one or two max. For Tusker Trail, we wanted to engage their online community and crowdsource their next adventure, thus saving hours of research, conducting marketing surveys, or coming up with unpopular treks. We also wanted to use the contest as lead generation and gather email addresses that can be used for future email marketing, converting people to potential customers. For our third goal, we wanted to increase brand awareness for the company in their market niche.

Some sample goals for your Facebook contest may be:

2. Come up with an awesome incentive

The social space is very crowded already with giveaways and incentives. If you are going to spend the time to invest in generating quality leads, make sure that your incentive speaks to your audience and is big enough to grab their attention. Tusker Trail gave away a free trek to a destination of their choice, making it very appealing to anyone interested in adventure travel.

Crowdsourced Facebook contest


3. Make it interactive and fun

Many companies are conducting giveaways and asking people for their email addresses. To differentiate Tusker Trail from the rest, we came up with a crowdsourced contest, asking people to vote for where Tusker should head out to next in their treks. People were encouraged to vote once daily. Regular updates were provided with the number of votes for the leading destination and the runner-ups and reminding people to vote more than once.

Out&About Marketing Facebook contest case study

4. Use a third-party platform for your Facebook contest

The market is saturated with third-party providers that will create an app for your next Facebook contest. We have worked with WooBox, Heyo and ShortStack. For this specific contest, we decided to use ShortStack and they did not disappoint. Why use a third party platform to begin with? Great question. Basically, you need to follow Facebook guidelines. If you need more clarification, check out this infographic from ShortStack – Is your Facebook contest legal.

The ShortStack team is super talented and the customization of the contest was superb and fit exactly our needs. The contest was mobile optimized, and the contest was actually able to be hosted on the Tusker website. Since not everyone is on Facebook, there is no reason to have a Facebook specific contest as you miss out on all those people who are not on Facebook. I know it’s hard to believe, but there are a few of them out there. So why not host the contest on your own website and drive traffic to your homepage instead of to Facebook?

5. Promote your contest

Once you have your Facebook contest created you need to tell people about it. With the Tusker Trail Facebook contest, promotion took place in the form of Facebook advertising, online banners on tusker.com and other online places, small PR effort, a blog entry, email newsletters, and organic social media posts. Following a plan that was prepared prior to starting the contest was crucial in the successful execution of the promotion. Coordination with the Tusker Trail team on a weekly basis took place and creative was updated weekly to keep it fresh and relevant to the latest results.

Videos were used as part of the Facebook contest and they turned out to be the most successful creative element of all. Although not professionally done, they showed the human side of the company and people really liked that. Take videos seriously for your next Facebook advertising campaign; they seem to be doing well right now on Facebook. You can learn more about how to advertise videos on Facebook.

Tusker Trail Facebook case study video

 6. Evaluate your efforts

Throughout your contest, as well as at the end of it, evaluate your efforts, adjust your promotion and creative, and make sure you are tracking toward your preset goals. With Tusker Trail, the final results included:

  • A brand new trek to Patagonia
  • 1,817 email addresses
  • 16,174 contest views
  • 4,622 votes
  • 353 Facebook likes
  • 298,255 impressions
  • 121,282 reach

We can say that we successfully accomplished the goals outlined at the beginning.

7. Follow-up communication

This may just be the most critical and most missed opportunity for many brands. You have collected email addresses, now what? Do you just add them to your general newsletter? In the case of Tusker Trail, five follow-up email messages were created specifically to this email list to continue engagement and provide additional value. Keeping the emails full of extra opportunities and exclusive deals added value and kept people interested in receiving communication from Tusker Trail. Some of these leads ended up purchasing treks from the company within weeks of the contest ending. In the era of personalized marketing, the follow-up process is extremely important and one that should not be overlooked.

You can view the Facebook contest recap with lessons learned below.


You can read more about another Facebook contest case study we did with Squaw Valley.

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About Milena Regos

Marketer, Consultant and Creator of the Simple Marketing Blueprint online marketing course for busy professionals.

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