Small-market paper drives $6K in new business with football fan photo contest

The Central Kitsap Reporter’s Loud & Proud contest also saw a 53 percent opt-in rate


Matt Coen
The Central Kitsap Reporter, a part of Sound Publishing, is a small paper in Silverdale, Wash., and its staff has created many successful online contests over the past few years.

The Idea
The paper was looking for a way to engage its readers, capitalize on the frenzy around the local football team, and generate revenue from new businesses, so it decided to run a biggest fan photo contest.

The Execution
The Central Kitsap Reporter offered an attractive sponsorship package to an advertiser, Clearwater Casino Resort. The sponsorship package included an ad on the promotional page every Friday in the paper. In addition, the sponsor's logo was featured on the all of the house ads and the contest page online. Both the sponsor and the photos entered in the contest were featured weekly in the A-section of The Central Kitsap Reporter and in a 2×5 ad on the Seahawks Sports page.

You can see a sample of the print promotion below:

The sponsor donated a $500 prize package, including a one-night resort stay for two, two $50 Dining Certificates, two $25 Free Plays and $100 Clearwater Gift Card. The gift cards were all valid for purchases at the hotel, spa, gift shop, restaurants and even gas.

The paper encouraged its audience to enter the contest during the month of January by posting frequently to Facebook and Twitter. You can see a few example posts below:

The Results
The Central Kitsap Reporter did VERY well with this contest. It generated $6,250 in revenue, and this was 100 percent new business that the client would not have spent in January otherwise.

More than half of the entries were made from mobile devices, and 152 out of 289 registered users opted-in to receive emails from the paper. Friends and family flocked to the contest page, generating 900 votes and over 7,600 pageviews.

Matt Coen is the president and co-founder of Second Street, a leading provider of private-label online promotions platforms and partner success services for media companies based in St. Louis, Mo. He can be reached at (314) 880-4902 or

Coen, football


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