It seems that you can’t swing a Zuckerberg these days without hitting yet another contest on social media. Maybe it’s the lowest common denominator. Maybe it’s easy to do. Maybe it’s just a natural extension of marketing like it’s been done for so long.
But I’ve been thinking about it lately. And I’m struggling. Because on one hand, I get it. People like to pull for their favorite (team, person, band, etc) and when that entity wins, they win. It’s part of that “we” mentality.
Setting that aside, I’m not sure if contests fit well within the community mentality of social media. Stay with me here, but generally contests start with MANY and whittle it down to ONE. And, from what I’ve gathered, it’s not about the ONE person getting all the attention in the social webs. Instead, it’s starting with MANY and spreading to MANY MORE. Or as Matt pointed out to me, it’s starts with ONE and spreads to MANY (sound familiar?).
So this is just a little reminder that contests are easy. Sometimes they are effective. But more often than not, people look at it like all other junk mail. Sure, they want to be recognized, but instead of offering them 15 minutes of fame, how about offering something that can’t be given out by the Prize Patrol? Like a sense of being.
Something to chew on.