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What is an Activation Competition?

Updated: May 24, 2023


An activation competition is how it sounds – it’s a type of competition that requires participants to take a specific action to enter or win a prize. These actions can include anything from making a purchase, sharing content on social media, scavenging around their local suburb (we are seeing many of these at the moment!), or attending an event.


Think about McDonalds, Red Bull, And Nando's. Not only are they all delicious but they also know how to position themselves against competitors (e.g., Hungry Jack’s & KFC)… one way being through their great activation campaigns.


So, what’s the purpose of an activation competition?


Rather than generic competitions, activations competitions are a bit more specific. Ultimately, the purpose is to engage customers and generate excitement around a brand or product. By requiring participants to take a specific action, the competition can:

· Help drive sales.

· Increase brand awareness.

· Encourage customer loyalty.

· Position brands among competitors.

· Promote brand growth and acquire new customers.

· Provide a lasting brand experience.


Activation competitions are often used in conjunction with experiential marketing or other types of events. For example, a brand might run a competition where customers can win a prize by attending a certain location they’ve shared via social media or participating in a brand activation at a music festival.


Splendour in the Flute Finder is an epic example of an activation competition that was sharable, visually engaging, exciting and created hype among a wider demographic.

In lead up to the annual Splendour in the Grass, eight flutes were hidden around Australia in the following locations: Bondi, Byron Bay, Mermaid Beach, Fortitude Valley, Adelaide, Melbourne, and Hobart.

Cheeky clues of each location were posted on Splendour’s Instagram Story for Thursday and Friday of the competition. The first person to locate the hidden prize was deemed the winner!


Each of the seven flutes contained a runner up prize of a VIP double pass to this year’s Splendour in the Grass and one flute contained the golden package!


Not only was the competition executed skillfully to align with this years Splendour in the Grass (the flute theme was associated with the headliner, Lizzo) the event incorporated the wider Australian community, generating hype and awareness amongst all states involved. As well as incentivising Aussie’s to follow and share Splendour’s socials.


Next time you go to an AFL game, Justin Bieber concert or annual Wine Festival – look out for activation competitions and Ansible bet you’d be surprised by how many pop up.

Activation competitions can be a highly effective marketing strategy, as they not only generate excitement and engagement around a brand, but also help to create a sense of urgency and exclusivity. By requiring participants to take a specific action, the competition can also help to segment and target customers based on their level of engagement and interest in the brand.


Need help figuring out how your brand can stand out from its competitors? The team at Ansible have all different kinds of activation competition ideas up their sleeve! Reach out to promotions@thisisansible.com to lock in an ideation session.

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