Video contests are becoming increasingly popular with retail jewelers looking for fresh, fun events to brand their store as the hip place for younger bridal customers to buy jewelry. But the quality of videos store owners receive in running these events is always a gamble. Such was the case for Joel David Wiland, owner of J. David Jewelry, when he hosted his first video contest last year.
But the risk paid off for Wiland, who has turned his “Diamond Fairy” video contest into a turnkey event solution that is now being sold to other retailers. Don Smith, owner of E.M. Smith Jewelers—the first retailer to buy the video event package—has in turn been able to monetize his video contest investments.
Shortly after running his first video contest in 2010, Wiland quickly discovered ways to make improvements to the event in preparing for the second annual video contest this year.
The first was to capitalize on the success of the winning entry’s huge number of unique views (more than 19,000 at the contest deadline time in March 2010, and now over 25,000). And, the name recognition that came with the “Diamond Fairy” video title in his Broken Arrow, Okla., market as well as neighboring Tulsa, where students from the city’s many colleges watched the winning YouTube video.
Packaging the event included producing a number of TV-quality commercials retailers can use to generate interest in the video contest event. Other logistical fine tunings that eventually became part of the “Diamond Fairy” package included electronic means of promoting the event (namely email blasts and e-newsletters), video verification methods to accurately tally the unique views on YouTube, monitoring and managing the event on Facebook, and other internal and external event support.
Further packaging of the contest for Wiland includes producing an accompanying rap song. Jared Hogue, Wiland’s former social media manager who managed the first contest, started his own multimedia company. Tiny Dinosaur Media created the “Diamond Fairy” rap, which will be available for 99-cent downloads at the iTunes store starting next week.
The rights to distribute the “Diamond Fairy” video-contest event package were given to Premier Consulting. Company president Nick Failla and his colleagues were anxious to work with Wiland to bring existing and potential clients a creative, exciting, and new event.
Since signing the distribution agreement with Wiland in May, Failla and his Premier Consulting colleagues have sold three Diamond Fairy packages with other retailers showing interest in the video contest event to give people in their market the chance to win a 1 ct. diamond. The event has been a success for Wiland and Smith in attracting bridal customers—not to mention the social media benefits.
Smith received 25 video submissions. Late in the contest, he knew Brianne Bowers’ submission was a winner. Her video arrived just before Smith was heading off to a Plexus group meeting in March.
He showed the video to his retailer peers at the event and got an overwhelming response to not only the video but the contest as well. Closer to the contest deadline, Smith also shared the video with several of his fellow IJO members, who also gave the video strong endorsements as a clear winner.
Inspired by the positive remarks from other jewelry store owners, Smith went back to Bowers and asked her to edit her winning entry from a 90-second video to a 30-second commercial that could be tailor-made for retailers in non-compete markets.
“I’m currently approaching several retailers who are interested in buying the customizable spot for their market,” says Smith. “Sales of this ad will help make up for the original event investment.”
Bowers now works on creative projects for Smith and his brother, including a large mural she painted of the Smiths’ parents from black and white photographs taken many decades ago when the family business was in its infancy.
Next spring, Smith and Wiland are looking to schedule “Diamond Fairy II” and “Diamond Fairy III,” video contests, respectively. The streamlined logistics will make planning, promoting, and executing the event easier for both store owners.
This will generate more interest in the video contest to increase SEO (search engine optimization) on YouTube while enhancing social media websites, namely Facebook, with rich, interactive-friendly video content.