Sweepstakes are a great way to grow your business, promote new products and launches, generate leads, and increase sales. But in order to ensure a successful outcome, you’ve got to have a few good giveaway ideas up your sleeve, adhere to sweepstakes law, and advertise, advertise, advertise!
Even the most exciting promotion can flop if not promoted correctly. We’ve rounded up some super creative giveaway ideas and the best ways to spread the word about your sweepstakes.
Gift Card and Cash Giveaway Ideas
When it comes to sweepstakes, contests, and games, cash is king. While cash may seem impersonal, it is actually one of the most personal prizes you can award. Every consumer’s story is different—some consumers may use a cash prize to go on a trip or buy a new treat for themselves, while many other consumers use cash to pay down debt, buy groceries, or purchase school clothes for their kids. These are the stories you can continue to use and share with your audience long after the giveaway ends, making it a win for the winner and you.
Here are some cash and gift card ideas for your next giveaway.
Use holiday buying seasons (Amazon Prime Day, Black Friday, after Christmas sales, Valentine’s Day, etc.) to your advantage and give away one or more shopping sprees with cash or gift cards. Ask consumers to fill out a simple online form and use the email addresses you collect to market to them all year long.
Ask entrants to submit a short essay describing how their lives would change by having their student or personal loan paid off. Feature the winner’s story (and tie your brand into it) in your next advertising campaign and pay off their loan!
Christmas in July
Get your product showcased and spread across social media by asking entrants to upload their Christmas in July themed video. Entrants nominate one person deserving of a special Christmas in July themed gift. Add a public vote feature to increase views. Winner gets $2,500 in cash and the nominee receives a gift box filled with your products!
Travel Giveaway Ideas
Travel is the second most desired prize consumers hope to win in a giveaway, so offering a trip as the prize is a great way to ensure your promotion gets lots of buzz. If you partner up with a travel agency, resort, or airline, you could save quite a bit of money on the actual cost of the prize.
Show us your season photo contest
It’s time to relive all of the fabulous memories created with friends and family. Ask entrants to upload a photo depicting their favorite seasonal memory along with a brief caption or essay describing why that memory means so much. Winner gets a trip of their choice to their favorite US destination—and make sure you include a few guests!
Trip of a lifetime
Send one lucky winner and their family on the trip of a lifetime to an exotic destination like Fiji or Thailand. Create a branded hashtag for them and ask them to document their trip on social media with it. And if you have products you can give them for the adventure (snacks? travel gear? clothing?), ask them to share photos featuring your product on their trip!
Back-to-School Giveaway Ideas
Back to school is the perfect setting for a giveaway—just remember many shoppers start shopping three weeks before the first day of school, so it’s best to get your giveaway up and running a week or so before that time frame.
Back to school on us
Offer a Back to School on Us prize package including a complete fall wardrobe, a backpack filled with school supplies, a lunch box, and a gift card to a meal delivery service for healthy school lunches.
Parents take a break
Why not offer a weekend getaway or a couple’s spa day? When most sponsors are thinking about the kids around back to school or holiday time, you can stand out by rewarding the people who will actually be purchasing your products—the parents!
Tech for the fam
A laptop or iPad is a great prize to award a family with school-aged kids. Partner with an app developer and fill the device with educational tools before you give it away!
His and Her Giveaway Ideas
The giveaway ideas below work well any time of year.
Wise ol’ dad contest
Ask entrants to submit their dad’s most hilarious words of wisdom along with a brief essay describing their dad for the Wise Ol’ Award. The winning dad gets a summer grilling package, complete with everything dad needs to grill (grill, tools, steak membership, and grilling spices).
Girls night out
Partner up with a few local businesses and give one or more lucky winners a VIP girls night out! The prize might include a day at the spa, a hairstyling session, dinner at their favorite restaurant, private transportation for the day, and tickets to a movie, concert, or show. Don’t forget to ask the winner to share your branded hashtag so they can post photos from their night of fun with their friends on social media!
22 Sweepstakes Promotion Ideas
Once you’ve picked an amazing giveaway idea, you need to plan exactly how you’ll spread the word. Even the best giveaway can flop if it isn’t advertised correctly, so make sure you incorporate as many of the promotion ideas below as possible! They are simple to execute and budget friendly—most of them free!—and work best when used in combination.
Schedule at least three emails to your subscribers during the giveaway period. The first will announce the giveaway, the second will remind them about the giveaway, and a third email will remind subscribers it’s their last chance to win something incredible. A fourth email can be sent once the winner is announced (post it on your webpage!) to send traffic back to your site. If you can, share a coupon offer for those that didn’t win as a thank you for participating.
Announce your giveaway in a blog post and share the post across your social channels. Make sure the blog post has an eye-catching graphic, the basic entry and prize details of the sweepstakes, your legal disclaimers, and a link to the official rules (required by law).
Share a post each day on Facebook. Make it fun and reveal something new about the giveaway or your brand each day.
4. Facebook groups
Join groups relevant to your industry or product on Facebook and post your link there. Just remember to follow group rules and only post about your giveaway if it’s allowed.
5. Facebook boosted posts
Boost your Facebook posts about the giveaway to reach more of your followers!
If you have a Twitter account, share the giveaway there. Because Twitter moves so quickly, you can post multiple times per day about your giveaway so that more people see your tweet.
7. Twitter ads
Promote your tweets if you can! Check which tweet about your giveaway is attracting the most attention and put some paid ads on it.
8. AdWords (now Google Ads)
If you’ve got a little to spend, target specific keywords with Google’s advertising platform to direct people to your website when they search for topics related to your brand or giveaway. Just make sure you set your campaign to run during your giveaway period and turn off your ads once the event is over!
9. Pin it
Share a pin-friendly graphic to Pinterest to promote your giveaway. Share it to group boards and Tailwind Tribes to maximize your reach.
Create an in-feed Instagram post explaining your giveaway and share teasers in Stories. Don’t forget your legal disclaimers in the caption!
Make a video and share it on all of your channels. Talk about the sweepstakes and make sure you show off your prize so entrants can see what they’re vying for.
12. Sweepstakes directories
Submit to sweepstakes directories likes Online-Sweepstakes.com, Sweeties Sweeps, Contest Queen, and Giveaway Promote. Remember, people who enter sweepstakes regularly are still consumers—the same ones who have the potential to purchase your product. Use them!
13. Spread word of mouth
Use news websites and discovery engines like Reddit and Mix to spread the word about your giveaway organically.
Enlist influencers to share your product, brand, and promotion on their blogs and social channels.
Print promotional details on customer receipts (both in-store and online) to encourage customers to enter.
Create signage and post it at local retail stores and on billboards, bulletin boards, etc.
17. Local TV commercial
Develop a commercial explaining how to enter your giveaway and air it on your local TV channels.
18. Local radio commercial
Purchase a radio spot or call in to a local station to announce the launch and other special offers.
19. Advertise on product packaging
Advertise on your product packaging, but make sure you pull associated products from shelves as soon as the promotion ends.
Partner with another brand and cross promote. Tapping into another brand’s dedicated audience is a win-win for both brands.
21. Press release
Write a press release and include all of the promotion details, including your legal disclaimers.
22. Social sharing
Ask consumers to spread the word for you by offering bonus entries for sharing the promotion on their social channels. This could be by retweeting your tweet on Twitter, sharing your Instagram post in their stories, or sharing your post on Facebook.
If you need help planning your next sweepstakes promotion, please reach out to us! We are experts at bringing your marketing ideas to life and can help you customize a giveaway that best suits your brand.Give us a call at (888) 744-3217 or submit a quote request here for a response within 24 hours or less!