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Create successful Contests for more Traffic.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

How many contests have you participated in? How many have you won? Have you created one as a blogger? I have seen many bloggers organizing contests and awarding expensive gifts, but yet not able to attract enough participants. Here is how to make it a Success.

Why to create contests?

Adding liveliness to your blog is one thing, but the inner motives of bloggers are getting more links and popularity through their Blog. The main factor on which online businesses depend is Traffic. With a right blend of usefulness and promotion you can do wonders with contests. You can get incoming links, free traffic, more subscribers and a name under your pocket. What more does a blogger wants? Contests provide a good platform for Viral Marketing. It depends upon you how to cash it.

How to chose the right Topic?

This is the most tricky part. Choosing a topic, is the first step to a Successful Contest. Any topic could be a right topic if its self propagating, and the end result is useful to its readers. Review my blog and win the contest, directly seems self promoting and adds no value to the blog of the participant. As a contest holder, tell me how many of you read paid reviews or ‘You review me, and I review you’ posts. This seems a direct way to gain popularity and increase your Technorati ranking. Rather than running a contest pay your reviewers straight away, or exchange links.

Your topic should be such that a maximum number of people can participate. It should not be irrelevant to your niche, like your favorite car when you actually are involved with Garments industry, but it can be on “How to produce World’s Best Roses” if you blog about Gardening. The Topics can Vary from Health, Life Improvement, User experience, and anything related or interesting.

Your contests can revolve around Advices, Benefits, Usability, Design and others. Anything that evokes the thought process and creativity. These would not only be helpful to the participants but also their readers. Make it Fun for your visitors.

Prizes- The major Attraction

Now this is the investment part. Prizes generally are the main reason why people would participate in your contests and help you promote it. You can also provide a benefit for the highest promoter of the contest. When deciding about the prizes look for Return on Investment. If your blog gives you a $10000 per month spending $1000 on your readers will benefit you all the more and may increase your traffic ten-folds. Organizing such contests show that you care.

Get Sponsors if you want it to be done for free. It will be an advertising opportunity for them, a link for a lifetime from your blog and getting the traffic from your blog. Getting Sponsors will also help you provide an otherwise expensive affair done easily, and with much fanfare, which is absolutely necessary for its promotion.

How to Participation Guidelines, a Deadline and Prize Announcement-

1. Decide clearly about the guidelines and what you want your participants to do.
2. A formal posting of rules should be done, with all the clauses.
3. There should be a definite deadline, something like when ‘I will achieve 500 subscribers’ is a big ‘No No’.
4. State the benefits along with the guidelines.
5. Prize Announcement should be a different section and it is not to be merged along.
6. State you Sponsors and give them a link.
7. Provide any limitations if defined for receiving gifts, for example to get gift vouchers cashed within one month of winner announcements.

Promote it highly

Any contest which does not have participants is of no use. When you organize an event like this make sure to promote it properly. Ask your sponsors to promote it at their end, and your participants should also help you in the task. The more it is promoted, the more it will fulfill its existence.

If you want an example you can visit Problogger- A Case Study. It is a perfect example on how Contests should be organized.

Happy Blogging,
Divya Uttam

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posted by Divya Uttam, 3:00 AM


Now look who is doing the teaching. I may just have to book mark this item. My last contest bombed totally.

commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 8:15 AM  

Very good tips. Contests have been working great for me so far and they are also very fun!

commented by Blogger Christy, 8:31 AM  

I've had good success with contests. And the nice thing is that some publishers have given me books to give away.

I try to enlist the other bloggers in my network by letting them know they can participate in the contest as well as promoting it.

One word of caution: if you live in the U.S. make sure you state in your rules if you're willing to ship a book, gift card, etc. outside the continental U.S. First, I'm not sure gift cards can be used in Canada. Second, shipping costs, even for light books, are pretty steep when shipping outside the country.

Finally, don't forget to promote yourself after you send off your prizes. I have stickers that I put on the packages or books with my URL and I include a note that's preprinted with my website name and address, too.

commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 3:31 PM  

Wow, first of all, thanks for the visit, 2nd, VERY nice looking site. I don't know how this whole BLOGGING ABOUT MAKING MONEY BLOOOGGGGINNNGGG thing got so big but yours look pretty good. I'm sure your a fan of Mr. John Chow. Anyway, nice to meet you (wink)

commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 12:15 AM  

Really good post, I will try a contest on my site soon

commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 10:08 AM  

Don't forget to mention my contest: Critique my blog and win a favicon and blog re-design!

commented by Blogger ilker, 1:54 PM  

Great article! I've actually just started a contest of my own about 30 min ago. I just got to start promoting it now!
2 months FREE ad space on my blog! ;)

commented by Blogger Sean, 2:15 PM  

Great, good post, thanks for sharing! Good work!

commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 9:46 AM  

I have incorporated a random lyrics game on Modern Musings with an outbound link directed to their site with a mini review and it has proven to be popular in a short time. I do have many Indian handicrafts so this post really helped me wrap my mind around a contest with a tangible prize. Now to think of the contest...

commented by Blogger Danielle, 11:26 PM  

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