Why @JetBlue and @TheEllenShow Rule Twitter Promos

jetblueBy Amy Slife With the onslaught of brands utilizing at least one form of social media, the popularity and ease of social media promotions and contests has grown. It can surely be said that social media promotions are here to stay. From a Dentyne promo that incorporated TwitPics and free gum, to becoming a follower to win free food, those following brands on Twitter most likely aren’t strangers to Twitter promotions. But some brands stick out more than others with Twitter promos by taking it to the next level. Below we’ve detailed two great Twitter promos and why they are effective.

JetBlue- JetBlue is no stranger to Twitter. Along with their main @JetBlue account the brand has a separate second account, @JetBlueCheeps, that is dedicated to detailing cheap last minute flights every Tuesday. But the airline has taken their most recent Twitter promo above and beyond cheap flight notifications. In celebration of JetBlue’s 10th Birthday, over the next year the airline will be visiting a number of U.S cities to give away tickets. Of course it’s more complicated than just snagging a free ticket, you need to regularly be checking their Twitter account and city-specific hashtag (i.e. #JB10BOS) for the latest instructions on where they’ll be located and what you’ll need to know or bring, like a photo of 10 office items or a state flag for one of their destinations, in order to qualify for a free ticket. And the added challenge, it’s a race amongst your fellow neighbors as the airline has a limited number of tickets to give out at each location. With a successful first run last month in NYC and a stop this month in Boston, where professionals, college students and everyone else in between could be seen running through City Hall Plaza, Copley Plaza and Boston Common, the airline has successfully added a fun and engaging location based scavenger hunt-esque element to their promotions on Twitter.

The Ellen Show- The Ellen Show has added a similar scavenger hunt element to Twitter promos. In an October promo at the University of California San Diego, in which students were alerted to the Twitter game via tweets, students were challenged to bring any kind of corn to one of her staffers at a designated location on the UCSD campus. Five students with a corn product were selected to move on to the next part of the challenge which they would need to complete in less than 15 minutes for a prize. This part of the challenge added a time element along with the scavenger hunt element as the five contestants needed to snap a picture of themselves wearing nothing but a red towel alongside someone in a uniform.

Recently, @TheEllenShow hosted a similar challenge promo in Boston. Weekend tweets began hinting to Bostonians about the upcoming challenge. Followers were eventually instructed to get three items-- one each starting with the letters C, V and S, to be creative and to await further instruction via Twitter. @TheEllenShow followers were then instructed to take their three C, V and S items to 207 Market Street, which in turn ended up being a CVS store, and to check in with an Ellen Show staffer, @Jeannieeeee, at 6:00 p.m. Ellen continued to hint at a gift worth thousands. Upwards of 700 people filled the CVS parking, with 10 finalists being selected to enter the store and compete for a $5,000 CVS gift card.

The scavenger hunt style Twitter promo works because it is downright fun and engaging with an interactive element that goes beyond retweets, TwitPics and becoming a follower. Location based promos add an air of exclusivity to those near enough to join in the fun, and a sense of urgency to participate is added when big prizes are guaranteed in limited quantity by two well known brands. JetBlue and The Ellen Show are just two brands that are successfully utilizing scavenger hunt style Twitter promos to engage and reward followers in different locales around the country. Can you think of other brands that have taken their Twitter marketing promotions to the next level? Share them with us!