Exclusive Content: Make consumers feel special

exclusive content

Exclusive content is the new black. It’s one of those things that people get excited about and never quite goes out of style. Whether its the 90s, 00s, or now, consumers want to feel like they’re in the know. The cool club. That they’re getting special exclusive stuff that maybe their friends aren’t…yet.

Your brand can be that content creator.

You can create content that makes your current and future customers feel as though they are the most important and special people around.

So how do you do this? It doesn’t take as much time as you may think. There a few ways that you can make your content appear more exclusive without the extra time spent. Here are a few ideas:

  • Provide exclusive content on a specific channel. For example, allow your Instagram or Snapchat fans to get an inside look into your upcoming product that hasn’t been released to the masses yet.
  • Better yet, allow them to impact what the new product line will be called. Snapchat is easier for this exclusivity, as it can’t be as easily shared onto Facebook as Instagram can. On the other hand, if your brand does prefer Instagram (which is a great vehicle for visual content), sending a private DM to fans can do the trick too.
  • Give your blogger collaborators the spare set of keys: Allow 3-5 bloggers to also give away the product. This way you reach more people who may be interested in your brand, but are still providing an exclusive opportunity for fans.
  • Make opportunities time sensitive: Whether a contest or something else altogether, create a feeling of exclusivity through small windows of time that makes the entire experience extra special.

To read more on how you can lead up to this, and follow up with your consumers, check out the full post on startup fashion.

How to: Engage with your Customers using Social Media Contests

So your brand is utilizing the main social media channels but wants to go a step further? Kick it up a notch with an online contest in order to

So your brand is utilizing the main social media channels but wants to go a step further? Kick it up a notch with an online contest in order to increase engagement with your target market and generate buzz about your brand.

A few tips to get started:

1. Determine your end goal: ROI for brand awareness, conversion, or what have you

2. Be prepared to give up the keys: especially with User-Generated Content

3. Keep it simple

4. Offer value and relevance. If you’re not sure how, follow some of these great marketing tips!

5. User your social channels to promote, promote, and…promote!

You can learn from the following companies on what they did right (or wrong), to do just that!


A great conference, which is known for being interactive, so of course they would have contests for the attendees. They had a fun game called SXSW Bingo that allowed attendees to use apps like Twitpic, Twitter and hashtags to document people and happenings at the conference. Value prop? The company who sponsored the game gained tons of brand exposure for their brand and product. Awesome.


2. Chevy Tahoe

Click to see an example of online contest gone wrong…


Unfortunately for Chevy, their contest efforts were not so fruitful. They tried to have a contest which allowed Tahoe lovers to make videos using content that was slightly made for them, in order for them to tinker with it and make it their own. The best commercial made would be used on TV and other advertisements.

Problem: The contest was in strict control by Chevy rather than “giving the keys” to the user. Users responded by creating mock videos.

Takeaway Lesson: If you are going to have a contest with user generated content, you have to give them the control to have fun, get messy, and be creative. Control is a relative term here.

3. Mass Appeal Entertainment

Mass Appeal Entertainment is a local record label in Boston known for artists such as Left Eye from TLC, Lisa Lisa, Memphis Bleek, and Jordan Knight. In the beginning of my social media career I interned there and worked on campaigns for the artists. One of the campaigns I observed was an online contest that allowed fans of artists to win concert tickets for submitting pictures (ex. best 80s pic for Lisa Lisa concert). It was a great way for fans to get creative, show how much they love the music, and engage directly with the brand and artist via social media apps and channels. Not only did we receive a myriad of entries, but the winners were unbelievably appreciative of the opportunity. Great brand engagement!

Tools used:

Twitpic: Great for contestants taking instant pictures of themselves to submit as well as the artists sharing real-time pics with their audience.

Twitter: Perfect for real-time sharing by the artists on the contest, how things are going with the contest, deadlines, and prizes.

Facebook: Like Twitter, perfect for sharing happenings before, during, and after the contest by both the makers and contestants.

MySpace: Although not the pick of faves for platforms, it still worked well for music brands at the time.

4. Offerpop and Perkstreet

Perkstreet participated in and won a community-based social media contest for marketing and advertising agencies created by Offerpop, a social media marketing software firm.

Offerpop‘ s contest showcased their Photo Contest app. A great part of the contest was Offerpop‘’s unique comment-to-vote model, which made it simple for people to participate and share their opinions around the contest. Even Dan O’Malley CEO of PerkStreet, stated: “We are thrilled to be recognized by Piehead, Offerpop, and the many marketers and creatives who voted for the various entries. Social media remains a key channel for us to communicate with our customers and is a unique place to educate the marketplace about our banking services. We also look forward to working with Offerpop and Piehead to explore their offerings and develop some exciting new promotions on Facebook.”

Click below for info on how to create your own Facebook Photo App contest byOfferpop!


Hopefully these contest examples will help your brand get some cool ideas for your own contest and help you “dip your toes” into the contest pool. It isn’t that difficult to think of ideas, but it definitely takes a little extra time and effort to implement and monitor. My advice, try to have some fun and enjoy the consumer engagement from the contest and afterward. Have some ideas to share, ideas to discuss? Feel free to do so via the comments section!

Note: this post was originally written for oneforty, which was acquired by Hubspot.