Are Blog Contests Still Worth Running?

I’m running a month long contest through my blog BenSpark.com. I’ve dubbed the contest SwagsGiving. I have a bunch of products that I’ve gotten over the past year from attending conferences and connecting with companies and brands. Basically I have a ton of stuff that I cannot use. How many Flip Cameras does one person need. I guess I could videotape myself from multiple angles or something at the same time but for the most part this is stuff I do not need. So I want to give it away and I want to promote my blog and get a few followers/fans/readers along the way as well.

There are so many blogs doing giveaways and contests all over the place. How do you stand out? Here are a few tips that I have towards promoting and running your contest.

Running a month long giveaway contest.

Post every day at the same time so that people know when they can start entering the contest.

Tease the prizes – Talk about what you are giving away but don’t reveal what people are going to win each day until that day. I’ve got Seagate GoFlex drives, Kodak Cameras and signed books to give away. However no one knows what day I’ll be giving those prizes away. They will be given away during the month but the contestants don’t know which day those will be given away. This gives a sense of mystery around the whole contest and gets people talking.

Use Twitter – Set up a twitter account that promotes the contest and create your own hashtag for the contest.

Buy the Domain – I posted my first SwagsGiving post and Jim Kukral asked if I had the domain name for it, I didn’t but I bought it immediately. I then linked that address to a facebook fan page that I feed with the links to the contest each day.

Invite Your Friends – Look, everyone likes to win free stuff, especially cool free stuff. Invite your friends to your new Facebook fan page for your contest.

Allow people to win more than once. It keeps them coming back and since the winners are picked randomly it is fair.

Follow up with each winner quickly. Get in touch with the winner, they will post that they won and further promote the contest.

Thank entrants each day who didn’t win. E-mail each entrant telling them that they still have a chance the next day to try again.

Set up multiple tasks to enter the contest – Tweet, sign up for your newsletter, follow you on twitter, subscribe to your blog and so forth. The main point behind the contest it to garner more followers, readers and fans.

Use Video – Make a video each day of your winner and the prize the won. Congratulate the winner, leave links to the contest and further promote the contest.

These are just some ways that I run my contests. Do you have ideas for more ways to promote the contests that you run?

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