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Case Study: Guest Acquisition and Engagement via a Facebook Sweepstakes

post_nickContests can be a great acquisition tool, if the marketing program is well planned.  This casual dine concept runs a yearly promotion to attract new eClub members, as well as to increase the engagement of those members.  But this year the client also wanted to increase its Facebook fans.  So Fishbowl’s  Online Marketing Specialist Nick Francisco and his team recommended a  Facebook Sweepstakes for what you might call “two for two” list building, a trick straight out of the SM3 playbook.

Facebook Sweepstakes have become a popular tool for driving Fans of a restaurant’s Page into the respective eClub.  Here’s what Nick and his team did to turn the Facebook Sweepstakes into a killer marketing initiative for their client:

  • Fishbowl built a Facebook Sweepstakes application for the client, prominently displaying the button on the first row. To enter the contest users had to both “Like” the client’s page and provide an email address, which was then added to the client’s eClub database. If a guest didn’t have a Facebook account, an external form had already been created to collect such names for the eClub.
  • Current eClub members received  multiple mailings promoting the Sweepstakes. The mailings included a link to the Facebook application.
  • The client also promoted the contest in-store to build engagement and increase traffic to its  Facebook page.   For those without a Smartphone, themed sign up slips were provided for data collection and submission to the eClub.  The in-store materials also included menu inserts and table stands.
  • The client also posted extensively on their social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr), promoting and linking to the application.

caseStudy_guestAcq2This multi-channel initiative proved to be highly successful in a short period of time. The client’s Facebook fan base grew by 81% over the period of the Sweepstakes. When compared to the average monthly fan growth of the previous few months, acquisition increased by a whopping 1750%. The eClub database grew by 453% during the period of the competition compared to the average growth of the previous three months.

As restaurants increasingly experiment with social media as marketing tools, we are learning what works, under what circumstances, and what doesn’t work.  In this case, the Sweepstakes delivered better results than anyone could have imagined.  The challenge going forward is to monitor the quality of the new members and determine the long term value of Facebook Sweepstakes as an acquisition tool.