Who are your video contest participants?
Most likely they are current students who are actively engaged with their institution community and involved in campus events and activities. Usually students who are experiencing a positive campus life are eager to share with their peers about how much fun they are having. What better way than to have them show people how much fun they’re having through a video? And most likely, they are already creating video content on their own (we are just going to guide them through an inspirational theme—more to come on video themes in a future post).
If your target audience is current students you need to consider what motivates them to want to participate?
Prizes, yes. But also fame and notoriety. Perhaps along with a monetary-based price (Amazon and iTunes gift cards are always a hit) the winner(s) are promoted across campus and amongst the local community for being “ambassadors,” promoting their campus globally. You could collaborate with a national or international online news source to feature the student winner’s blogs online. For further ideas on how to motivate your participants ask current students what they would like to win as a prize for entering a video contest.
Most students have personal devices or access to the technology needed to create a video (video camera and a computer with basic video editing software) but it is always helpful if the institution can provide technology resources to encourage contest participation. There are schools which have provided their students with Flip/portable video cameras during an academic program to encourage film documentation from the student perspective.
Another way to encourage entries and motivate participants is create several on-campus events to promote the contest by offering the use of video recording equipment or designated lab time for students to come together in the same place to edit their videos. Allowing this video creation process to happen in a collaborative space will further generate creativity and encourage students to interact with their peers, and friends, around a common goal: promoting their institution.
Next post: Video Contest Theme