6 Ideas to Create a Viral Social Media Video Contest

Randi Jensen
Randi Jensen
Videos are ever more popular on the internet and especially on social media. Almost everybody has a smartphone and it’s very easy to record a video with one and upload it directly to social networks. Social media video contests are therefore also becoming more and more popular. They are a great way to create engagement with your brand and you’re almost guaranteed to get good UGC that you can use in future marketing actions.

A social media video contest can be used for a variety of different reasons and goals. They’re definitely worth incorporating into your brand’s social media marketing strategy. In this post, we share with you 6 ideas on how to create and host social video contests.

Learn how to create a social media contest for your brand!

How does an Easypromos social media video contest work?

When you create an Easypromos video contest, a microsite with its unique URL is created. That means that you can share your video contest on any social media platform, website, forum, or newsletter.

The app comes with a registration form where users fill in their information and copy the link to their Vimeo or Youtube video. They can also upload their video directly to the application. Another way to participate can be directly from Instagram and Twitter, using a branded hashtag.

Around 70% of all promotion participants in promotions, access contests via their mobile devices. With Easypromos an optimal experience is guaranteed, as the app is mobile-friendly. Moderation is also available so that you’re in complete control of what’s being published in the competition gallery. Did we mention that you can also enable the voting system?

Interested in running a social media video contest? Try this Video Contest DEMO to test the real user experience.

Now that you know a little bit about the application itself, let’s take a look at different social media video contest ideas.

Idea 1: Retain and maintain interest from existing customers

It might be sometimes difficult to encourage random internet users to create a special video for your online video competition. That’s why organizing a contest for a group of people that like video shooting is a great idea. For example, if you’re looking for extreme content to promote an action camera, you’re quite likely to attract the attention of adrenaline junkies, as they love to record their daring activities. And of course, to motivate them further you should reward them with an amazing prize. This makes your customers feel special and a part of the community.

Like in this example where Quark Expeditions asked past passengers a voyage to Antarctica to submit a 30-60 second video. They could montage the clip using videos, photos, music, special effects, voice over and text to create a “truly artistic expression of amazing Antarctica”. The prize was 2 tickets to East Greenland: Northern Lights voyage.


Idea 2. Awaken interest from other target audience than usual

Do you want to connect with a new customer segment? Maybe you want to reach a younger target audience and renew your customer base. Video contests normally attract younger users so you’re in for a treat if you’re looking to attract new potential customers.


Here’s an example from a French bank; they asked the participants to submit videos telling why they wanted to win one of the attractive prizes: flight tickets, a language stay abroad, vouchers for stylist advice, and gift vouchers for Ikea. They even activated the voting system to attract more users and boost brand visibility.

Idea 3: Obtain quality user-generated content and increase engagement

Using athletes, radio hosts or other publicly known figures in your marketing strategy can be a good way to attract the attention of a specific target audience. If you co-work with popular celebrities or influencers, make sure they help you promote your social media video contest.

social media video contest by Jamaica jazz and blues music festival

Jamaica Jazz and Blues Music Festival looked for new talents to perform in front of a live audience. They organized a contest for all interested musicians and shared it on social media channels to reach as many users as possible. Participants shared their contact details and a direct link to a YouTube video of their performance. The organizing brand collected high-quality user-generated content out of the contest as well as the engagement and viral reach.

Idea 4: Co-branded online video contest to create brand awareness

Co-branded marketing actions are a good way to take advantage of a collaborating company’s social media following and reputation. Pair up with other businesses who sell their products or services for the same type of events as you and create a co-branded social media video contest to attract new prospects and grow your community.

Diamonds Direct is an American jewelry company with an online shop and several physical stores that mainly sell engagement and wedding rings. They teamed up with Simon G. Jewelry and A Way to Go Travel agency.


The two brands hosted a honeymoon video contest where they asked soon-to-be-wed couples to submit videos of their engagements. The first prize was an all-inclusive honeymoon in the Excellence El Carmen in the Dominican Republic, the second prize was wedding bands, and the third prize a jewelry gift for the bride. The winners were selected by a public vote.

Idea 5: Ask your audience to Pick their favorite video with a voting contest

If you’re in possession of the video material for your campaign and you want your audience to vote for their favorite, you can use the Pick your Favorite app in gallery format. This lets you have full control over what is published in the gallery since you’re the one publishing it. The videos are published in the gallery as if it were a regular video contest and you enable voting to select the winners or the finalists.

This is what the Italian music contest ‘Talent Move 2017’ did with their video voting contests. Local talents, groups or soloists could sign up for a chance to record a performance of either a cover or one of their own songs in one of three shopping malls in Tuscany. A Pick you favorite contest was created for each mall and the 15 performances were published in the gallery of the contest and Facebook users could vote for their favorite. The jury took the votes into account before selecting the final winner.


Know your video audience

Video contests normally don’t attract thousands of participants, but the users that participate are loyal customers of your brand.

Be careful with too many limitations and rules for participation: Length, intro, content etc. Even though it’s easy to record and share a video, it doesn’t necessarily mean that everybody knows how to edit a video. Mak sure you keep your target audience in mind; set entry requirements adequate to the age of your target audience.

How to select the winner of your social media video contest?

When using the Easypromos platform to host your social media video contest, you have several different ways to select the winners of the competition. Enabling voting is a good way to increase the viral reach of the contest. Our anti-fraud control system will help you determine whether participants have committed fraud to get votes and you can easily exclude them from the control panel.

We recommend using voting to pick the finalists, and then, for example, you can run a random giveaway among the finalists. Another option is to have a jury that will select the final winner. This is entirely up to how you want to run your video competition, just make sure to explain the dynamics in the description of the contest and in the terms and conditions.

Do you have your idea ready to create your own social media video contest? If you don’t already have your Easypromos account, you can create it here. It’s free to create your account and to create promotions in draft mode, you will only be asked for payment when you want to activate your promotion.

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