AOL’s about.me billboard contest has just concluded with ten online personas moving from computer screen to bright lights today in New York's Times Square. Contestants spent August and September soliciting votes for their about.me page which aggregates all their web identities (e.g., Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) in one digital place.
“The contest signals a new direction in the area of online self-promotion and yielded results that increased exposure for contestants and the about.me product alike,” said the company about its awareness-building campaign.
Some of the contest period results:
• A 63% increase in average daily about.me visits
• A 464% increase in average daily social activity across Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and YouTube
• A continued (59%) increase in social media activity even after the contest had finished.
About.me self-describes as the antidote to social media audience fragmentation. “The only way to combat this facetization of the individual is to empower them, and provide them with simple tools that allow them to effectively represent the total as greater than the sum of these narrow slivers,” Ryan Freitas, about.me co-founder, told us when the contest launched.
The three grand prize winners are:
1. Enation (back row in the photo at right): The Indie Rock Band’s page reads, “Our music is about rebellion. We rebel against modern-day slavery & child-trafficking. What do you rebel against?”
“About.Me is a great new social media tool for bands like us to give people a 'front door' into who we are. It gives us a simple but elegant way to communicate who we are, how to connect with us, and link to our music and the causes we support, like the anti-human trafficking organization Not For Sale. When we won we all felt like we were dreaming,” says band member Richard Lee Jackson.
2. Selfmathematiks: Ricardo Murillo, Photographer/Fashion Designer/Graphic Designer page reads, “Some people label me a photographer, but I just call myself an artist with an expensive camera. I'd rather reach my dreams staying up working late than by falling asleep.”
On winning, Murillo said, “I was ecstatic and humbled at the same time. This doesn't happen every day and it's just an amazing experience to go through.”
3. Coach Nicole: Nicole Nichols is the fitness expert and editor of SparkPeople.com, America's #1 weight-loss and fitness website. Her newest DVD release "28 Day Boot Camp" in Target stores starting December 27.
“The about.me team was delighted to see how enthusiastic and engaged our users were about the Times Square contest," said Freitas. "The sheer number of people who chose to participate was awesome, and the lengths to which they went to garner votes from their friends and fans was amazing. We saw YouTube videos, Facebook campaigns, and increasingly clever appeals for votes on Twitter.”
Social media just raised the bar on empowering individuals to cut through facetization clutter and make their presence even more…about.them.