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As an e-commerce store owner, you’re always looking for new ways to get customers. SEO, social media and email marketing are all great tactics — but they’re certainly not the only way to drive qualified traffic to your store. Whether you’re starting a new entity or are simply looking for a new way to reach buyers, consider the possibilities offered by setting up giveaways.
E-commerce store owners love this tactic because:
• It doesn’t require a huge budget for success.
• There is no need to master specific digital marketing skills (though a working knowledge of paid ads can certainly help).
• With so many specialized giveaway tools on the market, it’s easy to get up and running.
• It has proven to be an effective marketing tactic.
For those just getting started with giveaways, it’s important to go into the process with an understanding of what works — and what doesn’t. Based on my own experience, here’s how to start an effective giveaway campaign to drive new customers and sales to your e-commerce store, in four easy steps.
Set your giveaway goals.
Before making your contest live, you need to create a solid foundation on which to build. An important first step? Setting an objective for what you hope to achieve to help guide your efforts. If you’re not sure where to start, consider the following options:
• Boost sales
• Increase email list subscriptions
• Increase social media following
• Increase social proof and engagement
• Build awareness and interest
• Hype up a new product
The best thing about giveaways? Even if you focus on just one of these goals, you’ll likely achieve several of these other benefits. It all depends on how you set up entries for your giveaway (more on that in a bit).
Choose the right prize(s).
As a consumer, it’s hard to ignore a giveaway when it’s staring you in the face. After all, who doesn’t love free stuff? The prize you promote in tandem with your giveaway is what incentivizes people to enter and opt-in to future marketing communications. Without a prize, there’s no giveaway.
At this point in the planning process, it’s important to choose something that has significance to your specific audience. No, don’t offer up an iPad or $500 Amazon gift card — you’ll attract entrants that include everyone and their mom, but not your ideal target audience. The lesson here? Don’t go with trendy and popular; go with specifics.
Depending on what you sell and the value it holds with your audience, your giveaway might even focus on granting free access to your own products and services. For example, if you sell subscriptions to software products, you might offer a year of free access to your lucky giveaway winner. This giveaway prize structure is ideal for a few reasons:
• It’s free (or cheap) for you to offer.
• It’s directly related to your business and will only attract people interested in your product.
• The winner may eventually convert to a new paid customer.
Of course, this structure is going to work better for an established brand than a market newcomer. If you’re in the latter situation, you might have to get creative. It may be worth striking up a partnership with another related brand for this giveaway and cross-promoting each other.
Giving away your own product also gives you the perfect opportunity to follow up with contest losers and offer them a consolation prize — an exclusive discount on their first order. It doesn’t have to be big, but they’ll appreciate the gesture.
Use the right tools for giveaway setup.
Armed with a specific goal and a relevant prize, you’re ready to set up your giveaway. Choose from the following tools to make the entire process pain-free:
• Rafflecopter: Rafflecopter makes it easy to promote your giveaway and incentivize people on multiple platforms. Many bloggers use this widget, but it could just as easily support the needs of an e-commerce store thanks to its flexibility and straightforward setup process.
• KingSumo: Dubbed a “viral giveaway platform,” KingSumo focuses mainly on building your email list. KingSumo users have access to a high-functioning free version, though there’s also a premium option. Just like Rafflecopter, there are several bonus entries that can help your giveaway go viral, such as adding a custom link and incentivizing sharing.
• Gleam.io: Gleam.io is yet another solid giveaway platform, focusing on driving real user engagement. It’s very similar to Rafflecopter in terms of supported entry options.
Actively promote your giveaway.
Don’t forget to actively promote your giveaway/contest. After all, there’s no point in holding a giveaway if no one knows about it. A few ideas:
• Email existing email subscribers — they can help you spread the word.
• Put some ad spend behind your content on social media.
• Add a temporary contest entry tab or button on your website.
• Highlight the contest on your Instagram stories.
• Pin contest posts to the top of your social media channels.
While your contest must have some type of free entry option to be legally compliant, you can also incentivize signups for those who purchase from your business. Incorporating this entry method for a contest I orchestrated resulted in a $20,000 profit for the store and captured 30,000 new emails!
Once you’ve set up your contest and released it into the world, keep promoting it until it’s over. The next step? Finding the best way to engage entrants afterward.
December 17, 2018 at 09:36AM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs