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American Greetings celebrates new ecard format with yodeling video contest

Greeting card company American Greetings is hosting a yodeling video contest via Web and mobile Facebook sites to build hype around the company?s new personalized ecard format.

Contestants were asked to take a brief video of themselves yodeling and submit it to the Facebook page either via mobile or desktop. The yodeling video contest was rolled out in part to promote American Greetings new line of video ecards.

?We just recently launched a new digital greeting format ecards, and it?s been a few years since we launched a new format,? said Eliza Wing, director of digital brands at American Greetings, Cleveland, OH.

?We?ve been really focusing on ecards in general but wanted to stretch the format a little,? she said. ?The contest seemed like a really good way and a fun way to let people know about it.?

Personalized video
One of the cards in the line is a Happy Birthday Yodel card.

These ecards let consumers customize the song lyrics to create a personalized greeting card. Consumers can enter a name and up to three other unique customizations about the recipients.

They can then share the ecards via Facebook, email and more.

American Greetings is going to roll out more of these personalized video ecards throughout the year. The line currently includes the yodeling card, the funny love song and a card for dad?s birthday.

Mobile yodeling
To promote the new ecards, American Greetings decided that a yodeling video contest would be appropriate.

The company prides itself on being ?platform agnostic? and made sure that consumers could enter the contest via mobile or desktop. The contest accepts 17 different file types of videos.

Submissions were accepted until July 31 at midnight, but consumers can still vote for their favorite submissions until August 8.

The $1,400 grand prize yodeling-themed package for the contest include an accordion, a Skype yodeling lesson with Kerry Christensen, a personalized beer stein and a $500 VISA gift card. Five runners-up will receive a $50 VISA gift card, a ?U 2 Can Yodel? Instructional CD and a one-year membership to

Winners will be selected based on the number of votes their videos receives. Contestants can share their videos on social media networks to encourage their friends to vote for them.

?There?s been a lot of yodeling in the social space right now and we wanted to introduce those people to the new ecards that we have coming out, so we created a social experience on our Facebook page that can be used by a mobile device,? said Meghan Olmstead, communications specialist at American Greetings.

?It is optimized for mobile,? she said. ?They can record a video on any device. We just thought it was a fun way to engage a new audience and do something fun for our fans.?

Ms. Wing added that the contest was a great way for American Greetings to be involved in the mobile scene.

?Mobile is becoming an increasingly important way for people to interact with content and American Greetings wants to reach people no matter where they are,? Ms. Wing said. ?We want to make it easier for people to connect with one another. Being available on mobile is extremely important to us.?

Final Take
Rebecca Borison is editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York