Sweepstakes as promotions.

You’ve seen it countless times – enter your name for a chance to win the big prize! Sweepstakes are a common promotional tool for companies of all types. But are they a good fit for your organization? And if so, how do you fit them into your marketing mix?

The benefits of sweepstakes

Sweepstakes open up a new customer base – Sweepstake promotions get shared a lot, on Facebook, on Twitter and by word of mouth. You’ll get lots of traction with people you may not have reached otherwise is you promote it properly.

They can be a great value – While running a giveaway contest may require you to invest in one high dollar item, the amount of exposure it will generate will far outweigh this cost. Not only will you garner a ton of new leads, but if you advertise it online and drop links everywhere, it will generate significant SEO value as well.

Management is easy – Running a sweepstakes is not complicated at all. Shared links and a network of bloggers to promote it will do a lot of the leg work for you. All you need to do is manage it and reap the rewards.

How to implement a sweepstake promotion

Plan it out – To ensure your giveaway is success, create a roadmap for each step of your promotion with a clear goal. Do you want new leads? Exposure? Both? Make your plan accordingly.

Develop a marketing strategy – There are a lot of ways to promote your sweepstakes. You can use tradeshow promotions, word of mouth, Twitter or online contest directories. The latter are a great way to generate traffic, but some of the people who visit may be only looking to win prizes and have no interest in your company. If you’re trying to target an audience, you may want to avoid these.

Promote the contest – The first thing you should do is link from your homepage. Then send out an email to your customer base, post it to social media and seek endorsements from influencers in your industry. Don’t forget a press release!

Run the contest and reap the rewards – The hardest part is now over. All you have to do now is continue promoting up until the drawing date, then give away the prize. Don’t forget to publicize the winner. Then enjoy all the traffic and exposure you’ve generated.