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Norwegian Offers Pinners a Chance to Win a Dream Cruise

By , January 29, 2013

Chances are you’ve been hearing a lot about social contests lately. In 2012, many brands devoted time and resources to this space, with no signs of slowing down this year.

Our latest webinar dove into this topic by profiling Norwegian Cruise Line, a brand that recently asked users to pin their dream vacation for a chance to win one. Marisa Scime, the brand’s director of social media communications and strategy, shared some insights with us on how it worked and why they chose Pinterest.

An Engaging Fit for Norwegian 

“In 2012, we already had a great presence on Facebook and Twitter,” Marisa said. “But all of a sudden, Pinterest popped up out of nowhere. And we found that people were spending an average of 16 minutes per day on it. The engagement was three to four times more than Twitter. We decided, we really need to do something to grow our presence on that site.”

People love sharing vacation pictures on Pinterest, so in many ways, the fit was natural
for Norwegian. At launch, it the first cruise line to join the network, and as they explored the space, they realized they were going to need to get creative to get new followers.

How the contest worked

Norwegian knew that people love to dream about exotic destinations and constantly look forward to the next big trip. So, what better way to encourage people by asking them to pin their vacation aspirations for a chance to make it reality?

In the end, the contest garnered 650 board entries – 500 submitted through Facebook and 150 through Twitter – serving to spread awareness across the Web about opportunities for taking a dream vacation through Norwegian.Entrants were first required to follow Norwegian – helping to grow its Pinterest community. Then they had to create a board that represented their dream cruise with images from both and elsewhere. Users then could tweet the link to their board with the hashtag #norwegianspintowin or enter their board URL through a Facebook app.

Navigating the legal requirements

When it comes to contests, it’s key to pay attention to the rules – both the rules of social networks and legal requirements in your state. Marisa and her team started with research.

“We read about successes from other brands running Pinterest contests,” she said. “We used their examples to draft our own terms and conditions, and Norwegian had an excellent legal team that was able to review it.”

Of course, it did take a little explaining.

“Our legal team had no idea what Pinterest was and they were concerned about the fact that we were asking users to pin other companies’ photos to boards that were owned by us. But we were able to get around that because Pinterest is all about social sharing and getting these photos to go viral. That’s the nature of the site.”

Bringing Twitter into the picture

As part of the contest, Norwegian allowed contest submissions via Twitter through the #norwegianspintowin hashtag.

While this was successful – generating 248 total tweets and 428,531 impressions – allowing entry via Twitter did bring some unexpected challenges.

“There were so many links being submitted through Twitter and sometimes they got lost in the feed. So, we were nervous we were missing out on potentially great submissions… Using the Shoutlet submission form on Facebook was the best way to gather all the submissions.”


While it was just their first foray into Pinterest contests, Norwegian was thrilled with the results and the fan growth across all of their social channels.

“We were overwhelmed by the success of the Pinterest contest. Our following on Pinterest tripled. The creativity of the boards submitted was unbelievable.”

For more from Marisa and best practices on running Pinterest and Twitter contest, you can download our webinar here. If you liked the campaign, follow Norwegian on Pinterest  or on Twitter at @cruisenorwegian to see more!

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