Get Creative With Your Online Competitions

by · November 10, 2013

Online Comps picThe online competition has been a staple of the healthy business diet for a long time now. But does anyone stop to think if they are getting enough bang for their buck?

Who doesn’t want to drive traffic to their website, increase their social media followers and, most importantly, promote their products efficiently online? These are the main goals which businesses are always striving to achieve through taking a financial hit for a prize offering.

Unfortunately, many SMEs actually lose money by giving away a luxurious prize in exchange for a smattering of social media likes and a few website clicks. This kind of failure usually boils down to a lack of planning and a somewhat spontaneous effort to boost the business’ online presence.

With some forethought, and clear objectives in mind, almost any business can get their money’s worth and perhaps even exceed expectations.

So, let’s take a look at how to plan and execute a creative competition which can make a difference to your business.

Seeing the Big Picture

Careful planning is the best foot forward. Far too many businesses run competitions in a knee-jerk fashion. Simply uploading a product image to your social media pages and asking your followers to ‘like’ and share it to win is a thing of the past.

Meticulous and conscientious planning will go a long way to ensuring your competition benefits the business. Dedicate sufficient time to developing a clear a strategy for your competition and what you want to get out of it.

Gaining Attention

It’s the name of the game really, right? A good place to begin your research is to look at how your competitors are running their competitions and if they are having a positive impact on their business.

Of course you don’t want to completely replicate what they do, but you can adapt certain methods and tailor them to suit your business. Creating an animation or running an interactive competition will certainly garner more attention on the web rather than the hum-drum product image with ‘like’ and ‘share’ to win the prize. Stand out from the crowd and be noticed!

Mutual Rewards

Appreciating the loyalty of existing customers and enticing newcomers with expensive prizes is good business etiquette, but you deserve more than only another follower on Twitter or Facebook. The competition should always draw the follower away from the social media platform and into your website to check out more of your products.

A clever ploy is to place the full details of your competition within a blog post on your website rather than through social media. First-time visitors to your website will instantly become more familiar with your business and products.

Oh, and don’t forget, make sure your website is completely up-to-date if you expect a spike in traffic and online sales. Any broken links or outdated information will look unprofessional.

Promotion With Emotion

Pre-launch promotion of a competition is a hugely effective marketing tool. It builds up excitement in your online community and gives potential customers something to look forward. In the interim it can also boost traffic to your website if you tweet and post teasers wisely. Be more inventive then simply ‘big competition coming soon’. Make it interesting and engaging.

Target Your Audience

Fortunately it has become very easy to promote your competition to the people you believe are interested in buying your products. Facebook allows you to pay for advertising so you can target your competition post to a specific demographic. It very straightforward to manage and you see all the major companies dabbling with it.

It’s also important to remember to send out an email to your mailing list to fill them in about your competition. Not everyone has time to be on social media networks on a regular basis!

Finally, I think it’s smart to keep in mind the three E’s of competitions: Effort, Entice, and Engage. And if these effective strategies work for you, share the story with us.

Post By William Nestor (10 Posts)

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