Kicking off the case studies with a photo competition

By @Charloot

After my introduction last week, I decided it was the perfect time to ignore my new role and run off and take some holiday. In case you’re wondering, I went to Cornwall and had a great time. But now I’m back and it’s time to get down to business.

Over the past couple of years I have managed a few social competitions, and I like to think that I’ve got a good handle on the dos and don’ts as well as the hows and whys of running them. However, my ego isn’t such that I can claim to know everything. Therefore I’ll be inviting guest contributors to submit their top tips, industry insights and case study examples so as to bring you, dear reader, a greater insight into this competitive world. And, for every case study, there will be a short competition rating at the bottom – because I just love to pass judgement.

To kick off the fun and games, I wanted to share with you a B2B Facebook competition which a previous client of mine – FESPA – ran in early 2011. When said client saw that I was editing this blog, they suggested I mention it, and as it was the first experience I ever had of a B2B Facebook competition, I thought, why the hell not?

Firstly, FESPA is the Federation of European Screen Printers Association, and it is also the organisation behind a series of global wide format and digital print exhibitions that happen each year. In 2011, FESPA took its digital exhibition to Hamburg and set up a facebook competition as part of the promotional campaign.

Entrants to the Digital Man competition were challenged to photograph themselves wearing the Digital Man mask in an amazing location, next to a brilliant example of digital wide format print, or doing something exciting. They then uploaded the photo to their Facebook profile, ‘friended’ a character called Digiman on the site and tagged him in their picture.

Winner of the People's Choice catagory

Imma Maureso, Account Manager at Netlink Imaging wearing the Digiman mask

There were some great entries. Digiman was seen leaping through print rooms, lying spread eagle on copy shop floors and surfing on the beach with printed surf boards.

Why did it work? Well, primarily, because FESPA already had a very strong community following. As an organisation, it has a ‘fun’ reputation, and the people who attend the exhibitions year after year expect to get involved in innovative campaign strategies.

So if the community was/is so strong, why bother with a competition at all? Firstly, it drew people to the Facebook page, encouraged likes and involved that existing community in FESPA’s growing social sphere. Secondly, it helped promote the upcoming exhibition, as well as the digital print industry in general. Finally, it encouraged dialogue between attendees and helped build a genuine sense of excitement and anticipation in the build up to the event. And the promised prizes? A new iPad for the overall winnner and a digital handycam for the People’s Choice victor. Both would be awarded at the show – therefore if you entered, you had to attend to find out if you were the lucky winner.

What was perhaps unusual about this competition was the winner. A company called Blink Giant Media tagged Digiman, not in a picture, but in a YouTube video. The entry was a clear winner – just watch it and you’ll see. To date, it’s accrued just over 1,100 hits – which is hardly in the same league as Justin Bieber or Susan Boyle – but bearing in mind the smallish size of the print community, and the relatively new idea (at the time) of B2B Facebook competitions, it is quite a success.

Why not take a look at the Facebook photo entries here, watch the video and let us know what you think of this relatively simple Facebook competition?


Innovation:                   3/5

Engagement:                5/5

Incentive:                      4/5

Overall success:          4/5

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