Facebook Promotion Creates Buzz for Student Housing Developer

c21 just completed a really fun project – a Facebook contest for a national student housing developer, University House (UH). Many of the communities have established their own Facebook pages and profiles, but UH needed a page that provided information to both current residents and non-residents about the company as a whole without duplicating the efforts of the individual properties. c21i, our dedicated interactive practice area, had just the solution.

We developed the UH Facebook page and launched it in conjunction with a contest to generate fans. Playing off the popular talent contests that air each season on TV, including America’s Got Talent and So You Think You Can Dance, we created the UH Best in Show contest. College students were encouraged to become fans of the new UH page and upload videos of their best talent, or vote for their favorite by posting to the wall. The grand prize winner received a $500 VISA gift card, and a randomly selected winner from those who voted received a $250 VISA gift card.

To generate activity and spread the word about the contest, we worked with the UH community managers, called “mavericks.” They were eligible to enter the contest, and used their already established social networks to encourage both residents and non-residents to do the same. Those who submitted videos spread the word virally to generate votes. The result? The contest, which only lasted a little more than two weeks, resulted in growing the fans from 0 to over 800, with almost 600 votes for the various video entries. There were some pretty hilarious stunts – check them out on the page – but kids, don’t try some of these at home.

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