Grand Prize Giveaway

For Capstone General Contracting, an online bathroom giveaway contest proves to be a creative and relatively inexpensive marketing idea to gain Facebook fans and promote the company.

Every house has a room that could use a little face lift. Or a complete overhaul. For Andrea Morais, that room was the master bath of her West Boylston, Mass., home. From the dated aesthetic to the crumbling tile job, the bathroom simply wasn't working for Morais and her family.

Morais told her local paper, the Banner, that idea of redoing the bathroom came up while she was refinancing her home. With no equity available, Morais's cousin suggested she enter Capstone General Contracting's Facebook contest for a bathroom giveaway.

Ultimately, Morais was one of more than two dozen homeowners that entered the contest, hosted by Capstone owners Christine and Charbel Najem. Christine created the contest as a way to drive traffic to the Worcester, Mass.-based company's Facebook page and improve the company's overall name recognition in the community. "We gave people a month to enter the contest, and they started posting pictures of their ugly bathrooms," Najem says. "We gave them about three weeks to vote, and it turned out to be a really good strategy to get people to hear about us." Morais's bathroom won the contest with more than 400 votes. Capstone added the project to their regular work schedule and got going on design and planning. The project took just 10 days to complete once Capstone received their work permit. "The town actually gave us a break on the permit price becasue they knew the job was a contest," Najem notes.

Because the project was small, detailed floorplans were unnecessary, and the project moved quickly. A traditional black-and-white tile scheme was selected for the walls and floor, and the toilet was upgraded to a water-efficient dual-flush model.

In addition to a new pedestal sink and updated faucet, a new bathtub and shower were also installed. The bathtub change-out presented the only tricky part of the renovation. Though a normal size by today's standards, the new tub was about 6 inches longer than the original, requiring the shower wall to be moved back slightly.

"The wall had to be moved out a little, which took away space from the storage area that had been behind the shower wall," Najem says. As a result, Morais lost most of the cabinet space which can be seen here.

Workers finished the narrow niche behind the new shower wall, shown here, with the same materials used for the rest of the bathroom. Najem says small shelves were added later allowing Morais to use the space for hand towels and other bathroom necessities. She notes that Morais's children chose the upbeat wall color.

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