Corporate Eye

Brand Video Contests Come to YouTube

winnerWildfire is a leading social media marketing software company that’s well-known for its Facebook tools which make it easy for brands to hold contests and promotions on their Facebook Pages.  Wildfire also offers tools that integrate social media promotions with Twitter, and LinkedIn, and this week, the company announced it now offers its enterprise and consumer brand customers the ability to hold video contests on YouTube, too.

Wildfire’s customers include well-known brands like Mercedes-Benz, Sony, and Dairy Queen, and each of these companies has leveraged Wildfire’s Facebook promotional tools to run video contests on their Facebook Pages. In fact, throughout 2011, Wildfire helped brands run over 7,000 video contests, but none of them could be run directly through YouTube. Wildfire’s new YouTube integration makes it easier for brands to engage with consumers directly on the most popular video site in the world — YouTube.

Brands can run independent contests on both Facebook and YouTube through Wildfire now, or they can link a single contest across both sites. Wildfire offers the following tips for brand video contests:

  • Show sample video entries to potential contestants: Instead of describing in words what users should submit, show them an example in an easy-to-follow video.
  • Invest in relevant prizes that are highly appealing: Loyal customers are most likely to submit video entries, so be sure to reward them with prizes that are relevant to the brand.
  • Make it easy for people to create video entries: The easier it is for people to create video entries, the better. Don’t include requirements related to locations, props, editing, and so on that can reduce entries and contest buzz significantly.

AdWeek reports that Wildfire is already working to add more features to its YouTube promotional offerings, particularly YouTube’s mobile opportunities. Considering Wildfire has 13,000 paying customers, which includes 30 of the top 50 brands on Interbrand’s 2011 list of the best global brands, you can bet you’ll be seeing a lot more brand video contests on YouTube this year.

Have you tried video contests to promote your brand? Wildfire reports that the 7,000 video contests brands ran on Facebook in 2011 using its tools generated 6.5 million visits. Since video is the heart and soul of YouTube, engagement and results are expected to be even higher for video contests that run directly on YouTube. Will you give it a try for your brand? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.

Image: Kriss Szkurlatowski

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.