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10 Low Cost Promotion Ideas For a Successful Contest That Actually Work


Everyone has a budget limitation when it comes to marketing activities. Is your situation the same? If so, read this blog post, where we’ll show you how to maximize your results with low-cost or even free advertising ideas.

So, if you have some marketing budget available – better spend it on prizes and gifts for your fans and apps that will help your contest to have valid results (without cheaters and fake profiles), professional design and easier tracking of all entries. Of course, some budget will be spent on advertising too, but why spending a lot when there are so many ways of free and low budget promotions?

1. Social media promotions!

  • Update your Facebook cover or/and cover photo, change call-to-action button, you can do the same on Twitter or other networks;
  • Include a link to your campaign in your brand description, if you are active on Instagram add a photo that is related to the contest with a link, the same on Pinterest;
  • If you have possibilities, make a short video about your contest and promote in on YouTube! It does not have to be filmed with expensive cameras, the most important thing is that it is interesting and fun, and that it gives your brand a human touch. Include your employees in the video, let them show gifts that are prepared for your fans, say something more about contest theme and similar. There are a lot of users on YouTube looking for interesting content, and you won’t reach those users on Facebook or twitter. One great example of using videos is creating instructional videos, it is really valuable for your users and you can ask them in the end to show how they interact with your product as well.

2. Include share option in your contest – you do not have to force your fans to share the contest, but if share pop-up rises after they complete their entry, the chance is higher that they will do it, and in that way a lot of new people will know about your promotion. The higher reach is your first goal, isn’t it?

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3. EMAIL MARKETING! Should we say more? If you already have subscribers, send them a notification about your contest. They will be happy that you think you them too. If you do not want to spam your subscribers only with contest information, include a short info in your next planned newsletter. When someone new subscribes to your newsletter, send them a thank you message with a link to contest included. Or if you are a part of B2B business, include contest info in your Out Of Office messages when you are away.

4. Connect promotion to your website – Promote your contest on your website, in a form of popup notification, website sidebar ads, website header notification bar or similar. If you have a web shop, even better! After someone purchases your product, inform them that you have an active contest. Since those users clearly like your products, they will be glad if they have the chance to win something extra!

5. Everything should be connected to your actual campaign. From blog posts that you are writing, to eBooks, videos, infographics…

6. Try also traditional PR activities such as press release, an article in newspapers or some news portal that is read by your target audience, or if you have some event coming, promote your contest there. Think outside of the box! :)

7. Use the power of influencers! Reach out to an influencer in your industry, and ask them if they are willing to share the info about your contest. Or just reach to people who have similar content. Google a little bit or use media monitoring tools such as Mediatoolkit.

8. Include a message offline – if you are having physical products you can pack a note about your sweepstake together with it. Or better, if you have a store, let your salespeople in the store invite customers to be a part of your contest. And don’t forget about the posters with basic info in your shop window.

9. Partner with another company – it is a great way to get more exposure. If they are not your direct competitors, and maybe if your prizes are their products, it is a great way to get a higher reach.

10. Be careful about sharing your contest to sweepstakes and contest directories. They can boost your traffic, but bear in mind that those kind of people who visit those websites are usually freebie seekers and if you are trying to get a targeted audience, this is not the best option.

Are you ready for your next contest? Now that you know that you don’t have to win the lottery to advertise your marketing efforts, try our app chooser, see which app suits your needs, and start creating building successful campaigns!

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