Designing For Contests
I love home Homes.com doesn't kid around. They create CONTESTS not CONTENT. Why? Because contests have the added value of helping to create community too.
Erica Campbell Byrum How To Create Contests Video (start at 1:41)
Contest and games are FAVORITE engagement tactics because:
* They work (more new people come to play and share their playing).
* They are inexpensive WINNING is the main thing not the prizes.
* Contests have a LONG shelf life.
* Contests help unearth power Contributors and Social Supporters.
That last bullet speaks to the Gladwellian "Mavens, Salespeople and Connectors" tribes within your visitors. When you create a contest you will be visited by "contest trolls" and Ms. Byrum discusses how to deal with them in her video (link above).
This link is to Homes.com's Contest Page. This is a "Contest Splash" Page that shares the many simultaneous contests they run. I would add an ask for their "Blogger Ambassadors Program" too. They use contests to unearth their bloggers, but why not cut out the middle man and ask for those Ambassadors straight out?
Doesn't hurt to do both and I like have a page that explains the elite nature of our "buzz team". Don't think I'm saying Homes.com is missing it. They clearly GET the value of contests and you should STEAL the "ditch digging" design they do to "Splash Page" their contests.
Highly recommend watching Ms. Byrum too as her video is nothing if not comprehensive http://sco.lt/6myquH