How Contests and Giveaways Can Build Your Email List

August 7, 2012 · 3 comments

in Email Marketing & List Building

Contests Get People Excited
To Join Your List!

One way that Internet marketers build their email lists, is by offering giveaways and having contests.

You can see several examples of past giveaways on this blog including a giveaway for CommentLuv and a giveaway for Camtasia 8

This can be a great way to build your list, however, the value of your subscribers may be lower or what most Internet marketers call “freebie seekers”. This is why it’s important to target your reward/prize to be something that only your target audience would want and to make them do some sort of action to earn the entry.

Many of these tips also apply to contests and promotions on Facebook which can help you build your fan base there.

There are many types of giveaways and contests that you can have.

Some ideas for giveaways or contest rewards are are items that are usually are not free:

* eBook
* eCourses
* eReport
* Transcribed interviews
* Video Series
* Webinar
* Workbook

Some ideas for contests are:

* Create a Commercial Contest
* Graphic Design Contest
* New Logo Contest
* T-shirt Design Contest
* Video Contest

For big-ticket giveaway items, you will want to limit the total quantity of winners. However, for low-ticket info products, a viral campaign, such as is available through Viral List Builder & WP Subscribers, like “refer three friends” to get a copy may be the perfect solution. 

Regardless of the naysayers it’s clear that a well planned giveaway or contest can build your list exponentially, when planned correctly.

When you embark on a contest or giveaway campaign to build your list there are some guidelines to follow that can help you avoid some of these freebie seekers. Ensure that your freebie or contest can either create enormous buzz or generate sales in some manner.

Here are some great ideas:

Make the Giveaway Profitable

In the giveaway info report, ensure that everywhere you recommend a product or service that it includes your affiliate link. If the free report includes affiliate links you’ll have a chance of getting buyers for those products and services that you recommend.

Make the Freebie Up-sell

Always promote your other products within the freebie report with a great deal that anyone would be stupid to pass up — and say so! Add something like, …”Due to the fact that you were so smart to download this free report, I’m offering you a special deal….” Give it a time limit, and make it a good offer.

Contests Should be Self Promoting

Anyone who enters a contest or giveaway should be encouraged to pass it along, and talk about your product. By creating self-promoting contests that require something of the person entering you’ll generate more buzz. For instance, require a video about why they love your product and then have people vote on the best entry. This contest will require the contestant to 1) make a video 2) brag about your product and 3) share it to get votes — as you can see, this contest is self promoting.

The Best Prizes Are Your Products

When possible, use a giveaway or contest to offer a copy/service from your own business. Give away your product because then they get to try other products that you’ve created. Giving away another companies product builds the business of that company and is really only suitable when you have an affiliate relationship or sponsored relationship with that company.

Alternatively, prizes could be about your product such as t-shirts, screensavers, pens, mugs and other premiums. Remember the point of the contest is to promote you own business, not someone else.

Know The Laws

Different types of contests and giveaways are not legal in all areas of the world. While you may live in an area that they are, they are still likely to be governed by strict legal technicalities.  They also can not be offered to readers/visitors from certain parts of the world. Always know your obligations and consult legal counsel to get disclaimers and disclosures appropriate to your needs. 

Minimize Tracking Headaches & Use A Contest App

While for Facebook, I prefer the contest app from FanPageEngine…. on a website or blog, the free app from Rafflecopter will make contests very easy for you to set up! (Just be sure not to use it on your Facebook Page, as it is not compliant with FB’s promotion rules.) 

Rafflecopter lets you easily provide entry points (chances) for completion of various activities such as tweeting about the contest, liking the fan page, and checking out a video… or subscribing to your list!

For referral based viral campaigns, I use the referral opt-in feature in my WP Subscribers plugin (love that plugin). 

Want to learn how to build a big list? Check out “Build Your List Big“!

Have you taken advantage of contests or giveaways on your blog?  Have you ever participated in a contest or giveaway on another site? Leave some feedback below and let me know what ya think!

~ Kim ~
Simple Tech Tips For Marketing

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3 comments
Saqib Ahmed
Saqib Ahmed

well, mostly in my blog I offers business card giveaways and they are successful. People love these. Another thing is that it increase your presence in internet. One of the best way to get more subscribers and visitors.

Tan
Tan

I have participate many contests, but never run once on my own. Yes, you are right. Contest/giveaway make people crazy.

bbrian017
bbrian017

Hi Kim, you know I just started collecting e-mails with pop up domination. I already have over 250 subscribers :) I should had started it years ago but you know I've always used the blog engage send announcement module. Right now I pretty much say get latest updates announcements and get notified when we start guest blogging contests. But after this article I should be also adding win free Blog Engage accounts and RSS Services perhaps.