July 20, 2018 Jesse Bickerton
Thinking of running a contest? A contest is a great way to build brand awareness, while also engaging your customers. Unlike a sweepstakes which has a random draw to select a winner, a contest requires entrants to demonstrate a skill – often in the form of user-generated content – like a photograph, essay, video or something similar. If you want to read more, here is the difference between a contest and a sweepstakes in more detail. You might be asking though, how do I judge a contest?
When setting up your contest, the Sponsor has to set contest judging criteria which will determine how entries will be judged as finalists. Make sure the judging criteria is easy to understand and easily found in the rules. The rules will shape the entries received, so it’s important to think through what you want people to submit. Keep it consistent with your brand voice and great entries will double as fun content.
Depending on the type of contest you are planning on running, it might be useful for you to get some help judging entries. Providing judges with a way to score entries is also a good idea. It’s often recommended to bring in an expert and depending on your type of contest might help you find a winner. Often, it’s just as effective to have entries reviewed by someone who’s familiar with the rules and enjoys the subject material. Huawei is currently running a contest that’s partially judged by AI, in their Spark a Renaissance contest, so the options for judges are endless.
A frequent tactic RAVEN5 will use in photo contests is to employ a voting process for entrants. There can be challenges associated with allowing voting, but if your rules are written with voting in mind then you can account for most problems that come up. Allowing voting encourages entrants to promote your contest through social media or other channels, which can help boost your reach.
When you actually get down to judging your contest, don’t forget to:
Contest judging can be time-intensive, depending on the number of entries. Remember to take your time scoring entries and judge each individually based on your contest criteria.
Are you considering running a contest or sweepstakes for your business? Here’s a Sweepstakes Checklist to help guide your process. Consider hiring a contest marketing agency to organize and execute your contest. We at RAVEN5 are experts in contests and sweepstakes.
Jesse Bickerton, RAVEN5, July 2018