With the advent of YouTube, the productions that consumers almost exclusively saw on television or in movie theaters became democratized – anyone with a camcorder and internet connection could be a filmmaker. This blossomed huge communities of content makers and consumers. Realizing the potential to reach out to hundreds, thousands and even millions of viewers, companies began posting their own videos on the open forum. Through this, one tactic for engagement has been created – the video contest.

According to Entrepreneur, when companies create a YouTube contest, they should first motivate the audience. Without engaging them and sparking their inspiration with a call to action, the contest will produce dismal results. In order to do this, businesses may need to create a digital video that promotes the contest, clearly illustrates the rules and entry process, and then encourages the viewer with a reward.

These contests not only create greater engagement, but they allow customers to feel more connected by providing them an opportunity to have their voice heard. One way many companies do this is by having viewers post a “video response” to their digital video.

Through this, businesses are able to sift through the responses and pick the best ones to win whatever prizes or rewards they may be offering. This also gives them an opportunity to create a discussion between the company and the customers on what they thought was exceptional about the entry, increasing the bond between consumer and company. Furthermore, these contests can produce tremendous amounts of “buzz,” which can, in turn, function as free internet marketing. But in order to achieve this, a high-quality video must be made in the first place .

In order to ensure that businesses are able to do so and get the most out of these contests, they should partner with experienced digital advertising companies that can aid them in implementing this tactic within their targeted internet marketing campaign.