Gosling’s wished to drum up brand recognition, generate marketing leads, and increase sales of their rums and ginger beers over the peak summer season by highlighting their signature Dark ‘n Stormy cocktail and connecting it with the company’s tropical paradise homeland of Bermuda.


To maximize their appeal across broad marketing demographics, Goslings decided to combine a UGC Photo Contest and a Sweepstakes, keeping it easy to enter, and giving everyone a feeling that they had a chance to win a four-day trip for two to Bermuda.

Entrants would be required to upload either a video or a photo and essay demonstrating how they would make a Dark ‘n Stormy cocktail using Goslings Rum. The photos would then be voted on by the public, and the top fifty submissions with the most votes would be judged by Goslings staff, with the best submission winning the grand prize trip.

Each entrant would also receive a Sweepstakes entry and sharing the campaign on Facebook or Twitter immediately after entering would give them bonus Sweepstakes entries in a daily drawing for other Goslings Rum prizes. Prizes included beach umbrellas, Igloo coolers, and baseball caps, and visors.


Contest Factory’s versatile Contest and Sweepstakes platforms worked to seamlessly build a UGC Contest and a Sweepstakes promotion together. The promotion was hosted on custom microsite using a vanity URL that Contest Factory acquired and set up for Gosling’s Rum. Entrants could also enter the contest outside of the site through social media by publishing their videos or photo essays on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #mydarknstormycontest. Contest Factory’s Contest and Sweepstakes platform in real time gathered submissions using the hashtag across Twitter and Instagram and imported them into the system for moderation.

Contest Factory’s moderation team reviewed each submission received for the contest and checked for any objectionable or illegal content before approving them for entry into the contest and public display. Names, email addresses, and other lead generating data of entrants was kept for Goslings using Contest Factory’s Viral DNA software, and viral sharing to Facebook and Twitter was recorded for proper tracking of all bonus Sweepstakes entries.


The promotion was a great success, as it received multitudes of entries, with a wide variety of photos and videos uploaded by Goslings fans from all over the country. Compared to the previous contest Goslings Rum ran three years prior, the promotion overall saw a 111% increase in email opt-ins, a 161% increase in the number of registrations, and a 221% increase in social engagement by users. The contest helped endear a sense of fun and tropical adventure with the Goslings brand and earned them many new marketing leads. Goslings was happy with the attention to detail that Contest Factory put into this campaign to make their vision come to life.