Wannabe Hawaii visitors get 26 chances to win


POSTED: Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Marriott Resorts Hawaii today launches the “;Tweet Yourself to Hawaii Sweepstakes,”; a social media campaign that will award 25 expenses-paid twips, er, trips for two to the islands.

One person will get a ginormous prize—a Hawaii “;Tweetup”; for themselves and 11 of their nearest and dearest. For those not into Twitter, a Tweetup is a scheduled meeting of Twitter users.

Even the most ardent Twitter-avoiders might be compelled to join, though in the inclusive tradition of aloha, Facebook users and non-social-media enthusiasts are also welcome and eligible.

It will obviously promote Marriott Resorts, but the larger idea is to promote the state and keep it as a top-of-mind destination, said Ed Hubennette, Marriott International vice president for North Asia, Hawaii and the South Pacific. He is on both Facebook and Twitter.

The Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau, Hawaiian Airlines and Hertz are Marriott's promotion partners.

Hubennette is in New York to launch the contest and promote Hawaii to national media and will host a pau hana party on Aloha Friday, Statehood Day, for up to 70 guests. Their senses will be filled by Hawaiian entertainment and by Bev Gannon, a restaurateur, executive chef for Hawaiian Air and a James Beard award nominee.

Entering the online contest for a trip for two is simply a matter of going to http://www.marriotthawaiitweets.com to enter a Twitter handle, Facebook page URL or an e-mail address. Official rules and other legalese are also on the main contest site, which went live this morning.

Winners will be announced by @MarriottHawaii on Twitter and via Marriott Resorts Hawaii's Facebook page Aug. 28 and each Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday thereafter through Oct. 21.

Mainland winners will need to get themselves to a U.S. West Coast gateway city served by Hawaiian Airlines, which is providing air transportation—but Hawaii winners needn't worry about that requirement. However, a Hawaii winner might want to use the prize to bring far-flung family members home from the mainland for a visit, organizers say.

The 12-person Hawaii Tweetup prize is a little more complicated to win. It involves posting a video to YouTube and submitting the link to your video at http://www.marriotthawaiitweets.com by Dec. 20.

“;Why you love Hawaii”; must be the theme of the video, and entrants should “;tell us why you deserve this amazing trip and why the public should vote for your video to win,”; Hubennette said.

Videos will be screened and posted for public viewing and voting in January, and the video that gets the most votes will win its creator seven nights for 12 people at up to two participating Marriott Hawaii Resorts.