Almost every niche includes people with families. With a little creative thinking, you can figure out what type of social media marketing will draw them out on Family Day (and other provincial celebrations in February). Contests are an irresistible magnet for families, be it for the prize or bragging rights.
Family Day is celebrated in a growing number of Canadian provinces, including Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Ontario and Saskatchewan. Other provinces celebrate different holidays on the third Monday in February.
- Islander Day is celebrated in Prince Edward Island
- Nova Scotia celebrates Heritage Day
- Manitoba celebrates Louis Riel Day
Yukon Heritage Day is also celebrated in February, but it’s on the 25th.
If you’re running social media ads specifically for one of these February holidays, remember to adjust your targeting to specific provinces or at least limit them to Canada to get the most bang for your buck.
Social Media Contests for Family Day
Why contests and giveaways? Social media contests and giveaways are all about engagement and actionable data. They pack more punch than traditional social media marketing due to the sharing potential, which you can encourage with entry requirements and features like bonus entries. It’s also a brilliant way to score coveted User Generated Content (UGC), such as photos and videos.
1. Photo Contests
Uploading a photo isn’t difficult to do and people love showing off their images. Make the photo theme easy to pull off, such as pictures of families using your product or a theme that relates to your niche (like pet photos for a pet niche).
Photos engage by nature and can be a valuable type of UGC (include a usage waiver with the entry so you can use the photo afterwards). The whole community can be involved with deciding the winner by voting on the photo. That brings in more traffic to your website or social media page.
Photo caption contests are fun and easy too. Just post a photo of anything related to families and your niche, and ask for captions or headlines. You can choose a winner or turn it into a voting contest. Add a twist by adding the winner’s caption to the photo in meme-style, then publish it on social media when you announce the winner.
If you’re comfortable with it, share photos of your own family (they don’t have to show faces).
2. Video Contest
Some of the most valued UGC, are videos. Have entrants create a video with their family featuring your products. Include a waiver that allows you to use the submission to promote your products after the contest has closed. These videos provide social proof with a high level of legitimacy. You can choose the winners or double the impact with community voting.
3. Sweepstakes / Giveaways
Giveaways appeal to many people because they’re easy to enter. Entrants only have to enter their name and minimal contact information and they’re in.
Giveaways are an effective way to grow your email list, increase followers, boost engagement and drive sales with follow-up funnels.
4. Voting Contest
Voting contests encourage brand interaction and can be used for market research whenever you want to try something new, such as a new product or additional service. Voting can also be combined with other types of contests.
The greatest marketing angle that comes with voting is you’ll not only gain the personal information of the entrants, but also the voters if you require an email address to vote (if you can persuade them to give you permission). You’ll even reach potential customers by encouraging voters to share after they’ve voted.
5. Platform-Specific Contests
You can run contests on specific platforms with some basic knowledge of how each network works.
- Ask entrants to create a board on Pinterest that’s related to their family and your products. Have them submit the board link to enter the contest. You can invite the community to vote on which one is best or decide the winner by random draw.
- Instagram is also a popular contest platform, with hashtag contests being most popular.
- Have visitors upload videos in a YouTube contest.
- Comment/sharing contests are popular on Facebook and Twitter.
Regardless of the social media platform you choose, you’ll increase followers and engagement and gather more UGC. Go over the TOS for each platform to ensure you comply with their rules.
Use your ideal customer profile to choose the perfect prize to bring them in! It can be one of your products or other prizes, such as a gift card.
The Fine Print
Ensure legal compliance with The Canadian Competition Act. Quebec has it’s own legal requirements for contest administrators, which is why many exclude Quebec. Each social media network has rules as well.
Managing Social Media Contests in Canada
The best contest administration software facilitates a range of social media promotion and engagement. It will be backed by a suite of complementary features that allow you to gather data and contact information, then take full advantage of every opportunity that contests can bring. The entire process must be user-friendly and designed for people with minimal tech skills.
Canada’s Wishpond (Vancouver, BC) is a popular contest management tool that walks you through five steps of creating a contest campaign. When you’re done, it will generate the code you need to add the contest to your website. Alternately, Wishpond can host the contest for you. They also have experts to set it up for you if necessary.
Unique Opportunity for Canadian Digital Marketers
Family Day provides a unique opportunity for Canadian online marketers who are constantly battling international competitors. It’s also underused within Canada for promotions, so you can really stand out.
Are you running a Family Day contest this year? Please share it or any questions in the comments below. We’d also love to meet you and your family in the Online Business Canada Facebook group.
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Melody McKinnon's formal education is in business management, which she enhanced with more than 60 certifications revolving around business, marketing, health, general sciences and writing. In over 20 years of working online, she has owned or managed both educational and eCommerce websites.
Melody has worked with many businesses & brands in a multitude of capacities. She can often be found on CanadiansInternet.com, CanadianFamily.net and AllNaturalPetCare.com, as well as other quality digital publications. Her content has earned reference links from highly-respected websites, magazines and university textbooks.