Entrepreneurs and brands sometimes struggle with finding new customers outside of conventional traffic sources (Google search, SEO, backlinks, PPC, social media, etc). Want to know the secret to see a boost in signups, sales and conversion rates? Contests!
Yes, you read correctly. The age-old marketing trick of attracting people to your brand and products by giving something away still works.
And while you may not view this as being very innovative, thanks to the potential reach of the web; contests are a proven way of increasing your community, engagement & sales.
Running a contest for your online business is an easy way to keep subscribers engaged and acquire new customers at a low cost. It’s a no-brainer— people like free stuff. In order to have the results you want, there are some logistics for setting up a contest as well as what to do after folks enter. Buckle up, this is going to be a fun one.
Pick a goal!
Before going into the tactics of setting up a contest, you should decide what it is you’re looking to achieve. This will help determine how you plan, promote, and communicate your contest.
Here are a few goals you may want to consider when planning:
– Increase your subscribers’ list
– Re-engage current subscribers
– Build buzz around a new product or line
– Generate reviews
– Collect user-generated content
Your prize should be in-line with the goal you picked for your contest. If your goal is to build buzz around a new product or line of products, you might decide to have several winners or have a contest that offers a daily winner.
This way they feel like they have a higher chance to win and may be more likely to enter and hand over their information. This tactic is also a good idea so that winners can share that they’ve won and influence their connections to also enter.
Build a dedicated landing page!
Your contest needs a home, and an easy way to find and a share link. All of your contest promotions across email and social should all point to one landing page.
In addition to copy and an entry form, adding a custom field to let people subscribe to your mailing list is a must. If there are any specific rules and regulations, such as a one entry limit or employees not being eligible to enter, include this on the landing page as well.
Contests also offer advantages from a research standpoint. When people sign up or agree to participate, you can collect names, contact information and get answers to other research questions.
Companies collect this for research and analysis to better promote that product or something else in the future.
Relative to other marketing tools, contests are often relatively low cost, depending on the setup and prize. In a research-focused contest, you have to spend significant time developing and preparing entry forms to include adequate questions.
In some cases, the prize itself, such as a trip or major appliance, has significant expenses. A single prize for a local business may not be that much. Costs can add up for multiple prizes offered throughout a retail chain or to promote a new product.