Tell someone they may win a prize for doing nearly nothing, and you will likely generate some interest and maybe even a few smiling faces. There are other reasons to set up a sweepstakes or a contest, such as:
- Increasing traffic to your store or Web site
- Researching the market and collecting information about customer preferences
- Generating longer-term enthusiasm about your company that will translate to more sales.
Decide what you are trying to accomplishDo you want to get people interested in your product? Do you want to get them into the store or increase Web traffic? Do you want to increase sales? And, what message does the theme convey to contest participants? How will a contest or sweepstakes tie into your marketing and advertising strategy?
Set up the structureFigure out what kind of contest it will be; you can do a random drawing or have a set number of winners for each prize category, for instance. Determine the prize or prizes, establish a timeline, think about your target audience, develop the rules and pick an entry method.
Know the lawThere are many state and federal regulations dictating how companies can engage in these kinds of promotional activities. In particular, don't solicit a payment for entering the contest – that makes it a lottery and only federal and state governments can run those.
Run it from your PCSoftware can organize an entire contest or sweepstakes campaign for you.
Hire a proSpecialized firms can take on all the marketing and operation of your contest.
- Avoid launching your contest in the holiday and vacation seasons when your target audience will likely be too distracted.
- Use your own products or services as a prize to better your chances of attracting potential customers.