Charleston Wedding Giveaway

This summer, the Charleston Area CVB launched a free wedding contest. In addition to branding Charleston as a premier destination wedding spot, once lucky couple will win a free destination wedding for themselves and up to 50 family and friends. Registrants are required to submit a short video of themselves describing why they should win.

The top three video entries will be posted to the site where visitors can vote for their favorite. The entry with the most votes will win their dream destination wedding in Charleston!

We were fortunate to be able to work with them on the site launch and some of the digital marketing efforts. Here’s a quick review of all the fun we’ve been having.

Screen shots first, then more copy!

Phase I Site Launch

Phase I had a couple of goals: showcase Charleston as a premier wedding destination, showcase the partners that will make up the event details (cermony location, flowers, transportation, etc.), and generate qualified registrants.

In addition to each partner getting a profile on the site, the Charleston Area CVB produced a great video overview that profiles Charleston and what the winner will experience on their special day.

We also used Google Analytics to track registration submissions as a “goal” for the site, which made it easy to see how many were coming in, and see which marketing channels were driving registrations.

Digital Marketing Efforts

Launching the site is one thing… promoting it is another. In addition to online media placements the Charleston Area CVB had arranged with major wedding sites like Bride.com and Martha Stewart Weddings, there were a variety of other channels used to promote the event, which we’ll detail below.

But first, how about some graphical examples, then we’ll dig into the content.

1. Teasers on the CharlestonWeddingGuide.com site: this site already gets a ton of traffic from organic searches like “charleston weddings,” so cross-promotion was an obvious choice. We designer teasers that lived on the home page and internal pages.

2. Paid search with Google Adwords: We helped generate a keyword list centered around “wedding contests” and ran ads for those searches in addition to placing text ads on Google’s partner sites that focused on weddings

3. Basic SEO: There was also some basic search engine optimization work done, which has resulted in page one rankings for “free wedding contest.”

4. Facebook page and ads: We knew our target audience were heavy participants in social networks. So we worked with the Charleston Area CVB to set up a Facebook “page” that would highlight additional images and videos, while making it easy to communicate ongoing announcements and updates.

Additionally, we used Facebook ads to target users over the age of 18 and with a status of “engaged.” Talk about some targeting!

5. Ongoing email marketing: a template was established for ongoing communications with the registrants.

6. YouTube integration for video uploads: we initially just required registrants to mail in their videos, but eventually we used the YouTube API to create an upload process that drops the videos directly into the CVB YouTube account and marks them as “private.” That way the Charleston Area CVB can review and organize the videos as needed.

It’s great to have a client that is so wiling to try out so many different marketing channels. We’re looking forward to a successful contest and appreciate our role in branding this area as a premier wedding destination.