Great Facebook Idea: March Madness for Dorms

Connecting your pages with a trending topic is great when you can pull it off, but often it comes across as very forced. At this point, as a social media blogger I am obligated to give the Kenneth Cole Insensitive Egypt Tweet (TM) example. Sorry, it's in the contract.... check back next week for the obligatory slobbery Zappos.com plaudits. But I'm absolutely loving this fun March Madness counter-programming that Taylor University is doing:

Gerig Hall? Not so popular these days.

Gerig Hall? Not so popular these days.

Great use of a contest app, and a perfect example of a tactic to get both current students and alumni involved. For a page with just over 9,000 followers, the vote totals are strong, and since it requires people to like the page before you can vote, it has provided a nice bump in the fan count as well.

Best of all, it taps into a natural and authentic feeling of dorm pride and school spirit - contests like these are always most successful when they can make that emotional connection.

I wrote to Jim Garringer, who works with Taylor University's social media efforts, and he kindly responded with this note:

The Hall Madness idea came from our VP of Enrollment Management and Marketing, Steve Mortland. We worked with BlueFuego, a great group of experts on social media, to create the tech that allowed people to vote by "likes." The goal was to get more Taylor users connected to our Facebook page and we have been gratified by how well the initiative has performed.

I also love that there is a cool prize attached, assuming a statue of a bishop is considered a cool prize at a Christian college. Or for people who collect bishop statues. Like me. Don't judge. I'm particularly fond of Salzburg Prince-Archbishops, because, come on - a prince-archbishop? That's like an elephant-panda, only cooler.

Hall Madness? A fun idea, perfect timing, and a neat example of connecting a page to a big trending topic. I'll be keeping this one in the back pocket for sure.

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