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  • How can organizing an online giveaway help my marketing?
  • How do I run an online giveaway successfully?
  • How do I create buzz to promote my online giveaway?

Running an online giveaway in the age of digital media can help you win big with your audience.

That’s because people love to get into the spirit of competition. And when people compete or win, they radiate good vibes, which create a warm and aura around your brand.

But giveaways do more than generate good vibes from your audience. They can also help you get new customers.

Giveaways influence the purchasing decisions of 75% of participants. Since giveaways can have such a big impact, you need to know how to run them successfully.

There are 2 main types of giveaways you can run: sweepstakes and contests.

  • Sweepstakes are like a lottery and rely purely on chance.
  • Contests require people to take certain actions to enter, like posting a photo or entering an email address. The winners are determined by vote or other specific judging criteria.

Listen up: Make sure your giveaway is on the legal up – and – up. Laws may vary between states and countries, and from platform to platform. So before you run the giveaway, you might want to consult with your legal team to make sure there won’t be any problems.

No matter what type of giveaway you plan on running, you have to first establish your business goals.

Do you want your giveaway to boost social engagement, generate leads, drive sales, or something else? You might even choose a combination of these goals. Just make your goals clear, as they help you set giveaway rules.

For example, if your goal is generating leads, you can make email addresses an entry requirement. If you want to drive people to your store, you can ask them to upload an in-store photo of themselves to social media and tag their location.

After you’ve set your goals, you’re ready to find a tool that will help you plan and build a giveaway that’s right for your brand and target audience.

It’s important that the tool you select can support running the giveaway across multiple platforms, especially since so much social media activity happens on mobile.

Campaign-building services like ShortStack, Offerpop, and Stackla can help you build and run giveaways.

Once you’ve decided which service to use, you’ll need to create an externally facing home for your giveaway.

You could create a microsite or devoted page on your website, which will allow people to enter the giveaway, read eligibility rules, and examine the fine print.

Avoid hosting the giveaway on your social media channels. That’s because sometimes there are strict rules about what you can ask people to do on them.

Also, social media channels may limit the type of giveaways you can run, and may it difficult for people to join in. To help avoid any issues that potentially derail your giveaway, consult with your legal resources.

However, you can usually still use your social media channels to promote your giveaway, provide updates, feature winners, and share giveaway news.

To create buzz around your giveaway, make sure you have the time and resources to run a promotional campaign that leads up to the launch date.

Check if you can promote the giveaway on social media channels. If you can, publish posts about the giveaway on them and in your email newsletters. Also, consider running paid social ads and search and display ads to gain more exposure.

You can also track which social media channels are gaining the most entries by creating a UTM (Urchin Tracking Module)  link. It’s a custom URL that lets you see which channels or sites people are coming from and how many of them enter the giveaway.

Once the giveaway is underway, promote content that contestants have created and the prizes you’re offering across your marketing channels.

When coming up with ideas for prizes, think of ones that are relevant and appropriate for your brand, audience, and the type of giveaway you’re running.

If you’re asking people to submit that takes an effort of time, make the prize worthwhile. Along with the grand prizes, consider offering smaller prizes to all contestants. This will make everyone feel like a winner. (“You get a coupon. You get a coupon. Everybody gets a coupon!”)

Consider offering special deals like discounts to people who sign up for your newsletter or follow you on social media channels. You can also gain more exposure by letting non-contestants participate in the voting process.

After the giveaway has ended all the winners have been announced, measure how close you are to reaching your business goals.

Compare entries to your existing contacts participated. Services like ConstantContact or MailChimp can help you do this.

The benefits of the giveaway can also keep coming as time goes by. A study by digital agency Tamba showed that 84.5% of participants share posts from brands even after the giveaway has ended.

You can run a handful of giveaways a year, but be careful not to overdo it. If you run too many, your audience might stop paying attention.

Remember: Always keep your giveaways legit. Laws and regulations can change over time, and between digital platforms. So make sure you get the thumbs up for your legal source before running or promoting your giveaway.

Now that you’ve learned about running online giveaways, let’s see if you’re ready to make one of your own. To start, choose a service to set up the giveaway for you and work with your marketing team to plan a promotional campaign. Remember: use social media to generate buzz about the giveaway

References: Google Webmasters, Think With Google, Google Primer

Mohammad Rahighi

Mohammad Rahighi

Designer and Project Manager who loves crafting big ideas and is passionate about designing meaningful experiences that can influence positive change and help make the world a better place.

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