Retweet contest: A simple way to get your business message out

| Oct 16, 2009

Nothing’s wrong with good, simple marketing ideas in Twitter. In fact, isn’t that what Twitter was supposed to be all about?

One of the easiest ideas to get your business message circulating is offering an incentive — a simple contest for example — asking your followers to retweet your tweet. I’ve seen this being used effectively by many Boulder area businesses, and it’s so easy to do.

tweetsThis week, the Boulder Theater was promoting an evening performance of Paco Pena, one of the best flamenco guitarists in the world. They offered up the chance for two concert tickets to anyone who retweeted their short promo for the show. Instead of just reaching their Twitter followers, their message spread out to the followers of many of their followers.

Personally I like to save my retweets for things I find especially interesting and that I think Boulderites and others who follow me might also like to know about. A world-class Spanish flamenco guitarist is not someone you get the chance to hear everyday in Colorado, but it was certainly the “contest” that got me to help promote the show. I’ll be honest, I’d never heard of this performer. Now I’m a fan.

So guess what? I won the contest, and off I went to what turned out to be one of the best shows I’ve seen. The audience loved the exciting combination of flamenco guitarists and dancers.

The contest is such a simple idea, and now I’m even giving back a little more publicity to the Boulder Theater by thanking them for the free tickets.

Allison and I also went to George’s Food and Drink, the very cozy and comfortable bar that now adjoins the theater and is the perfect spot for a drink and food before or after the show. So even though I won the tickets, they still got a paying customer.

I do think you need to offer up an enticing offer for your retweet competition — concert tickets were great, but you might consider a free meal or bottle of wine if you run a restaurant. Make it really worth while for me to retweet your business — a discount where I have to buy something anyway probably isn’t enough incentive for me.

The concert seats were also in the reserved section, not stuck somewhere in the back of the theater.

With a tweet announcing the winner, you show that the contest was serious and hopefully your winner will tweet back their thanks! That starts to add up to quite a few messages flying around promoting your business, not to mention all of the good karma!

I did find an archive of some simple retweet contests online at a site called Retweet Please. There might be a few ideas there for you to use in your business.