A week ago I wrote a post on giveaways and if you haven’t read the first part, I would highly encourage that you do so. If not I will send a bearded dragon to your house and she will just stare at you until you read the post (you do have to provide the tank and she prefers it to be 100 degrees, she eats a lot, too). I know it’s intimidating. But, no seriously it’s great information from my friend Justin Germino (at dragonblogger.com). So with further ado here is the second part of the interview.
What do you think is the most valuable action you want your entries to take (which gives you the best results)?
Justin:This depends, asking readers to follow you on the medium which you communicate most often. If someone is an affiliate marketer, the email sign up is the most valuable, so asking them to join the newsletter, mailing list…etc. If you are most communicative on Twitter, then asking for Twitter followers, Facebook…etc. Just remember everyone has an email, so anyone can do this, not everyone uses Twitter or Facebook, so know that depending on entry method it may get more or less entries. This is why you should have some variety to cater to the various users who may use different services.
Garen: It makes perfect since I am in the process of split testing it to see which ones are the most valuable for my business. Furthermore, if people out there reading this don’t have a mailing list you should start one.
Now I know the big two PunchTab and RaffleCopter are the two biggest giveaway scripts. Do you think it’s worth it to use a paid account vs a free one for either of these?
Justin: If you are a big corporation and want white label branding and direct email list signup integration, then Rafflecopter subscription is the way to go. If you run giveaways more than 4x per month then a subscription plan may be beneficial for the extra features. If you are a casual blogger, giveaway site I don’t think a subscription plan is needed and at more than $40 per month for Rafflecopter business plan is outside most budgets anyway.
Garen: Good information and I have had moderate success with free, so I believe the $40 a month could be spent elsewhere than a pro account at either of these places. For instance Blogengage could be a much more worthwhile expense and it’s $10 a month.
Affiliate managers are great for sponsoring contest. Personally, mine will sponsor me to help me gain exposure to my giveaways. How do you handle getting sponsors to your contest.
Whether I call for sponsors or they approach me, I typically approach them the same. I ask them what they are looking for as an ROI, is it Twitter follower growth, Facebook fans, more YouTube subscribers and help try to leverage what the Punchtab system can do. When collecting sponsorship funding for giveaways, don’t just think about prize cost, estimate the cost to promote (buy some sponsored promotion) and shipping prizes and leverage that into the costs you need to collect to help pay for the giveaway. Also find out what type of prize the advertiser wants to be part of, offer them idea’s, and let them know what does well and what hasn’t done previously. Some of the biggest is expectations, advertisers will see that a Google Nexus giveaway will get 60,000+ entries, but a Web Hosting Giveaway only gets about 1,000 entries. Even if value of prize was the same (a 1 year hosting package for example). The issue is reader base, anyone can use a tablet, but only a fraction of audience members need or want to run their own hosted websites, this is why it is important to forecast advertising for giveaway so you can target niche readership and audiences to help spur and reach the right audiences.
Garen: This changes the way I approach my sponsors I have excellent business partners, but if I can offer them likes, retweets, ect. they would be more inclined to sponsor me. I think this goes back to the fundamentals of good Internet marketing, you have to provide value in order to get trust. This is a great way to build business to business relationships. I know a number of people that would jump to get 2k fanpage likes on their companies fanpage.
Is there anything you feel is vital that people need to know about running contest?
Justin: Again, don’t call it a contest. Giveaway or Sweepstakes if you use Punchtab or Rafflecopter and there is a random winner, it can’t be called a contest. This is a mistake I made early on and was very quick to correct when I realized I was making a critical mistake here. You will want to plan your giveaway, call for sponsors and set proper time frames. NEVER change the end date of a giveaway after you have made the giveaway live and collected entries, this can break laws too. If you don’t get enough entries by end date, you can’t just push it out to get more entries, you are violating the ToS of the giveaway you have set. Honor it and realize some giveaways will not provide the ROI as others, start off small until you learn more effective promotion techniques, I offer some of my insights at this article here: http://www.dragonblogger.com/promote-contests-online/
Well, there you have it kids. Go out there and start building some awesome contest that people will leap to enter. This is some vital information I wish I would have had a year ago, but like everything you learn from what works and what doesn’t. Contest are great for getting likes, tweets, opt-ins, ect. If you’re not using the power of giveaway you really need to consider it. I should also point out that Google will strip your Googe +1 if you try to use these sites to get more +1′s, so don’t make that mistake! What other questions do you have on running a giveaway.