Are you thinking about running a contest for your business? You should. Not only are they a fun way to get engagement, but they create greater brand awareness. They’re also an excellent way to convert views into sales.

But getting a contest off the ground is only the start. It’s not just about developing a challenge and determining a prize. You also have to find a way to get the word out to your audience.

If you’re interested in learning how to run successful online contests, keep reading. A few of these ideas were used by Carefree Gutter Guard to help boost their sales quite favourably.

The Planning Stage

There’s a lot of leg-work that goes into a successful campaign. The more you plan, the easier things will run.

Establish a Goal

Why are you looking to run a contest? Do you want to build awareness of your brand? Are you looking for greater social engagement? Or are you looking to increase sales?

The result you want will determine the contest you run. The campaign needs to support your goals.

Decide on a Contest

The prize you offer needs to reflect the efforts of your audience. If there’s one grand prize, they’ll be more willing to put in serious effort.

Be clear about what’s required and what the reward is. A contest can leave a bad impression if the audience feels that the prize isn’t worth the task.

Set a Date

Timing is everything. A contest will likely draw great attention, so be prepared to capitalize on the interest‘. If this is the first that many people will learn of your brand, make sure it’s a positive experience.

Running the Contest

Get your content online. Make sure that the rules are clear, the prize is featured, and that participation is easy.

Promotion and Advertising

A contest is only as good as its participants. Reach out on social media and hit that email list. Apps like PieSync can help manage multiple platforms easily.

If you’re running a large-scale contest, run ads. If you’re offering a valuable prize, get it the attention that it deserves. This is a great chance of reaching new people. Don’t be afraid to reach them where they are.

Keep Your Audience Updated

You don’t just want people to register and forget about it. Build excitement into the campaign. Regular updates keep people engaged as they see the contest an active thing, not just a one-time transaction.

When it’s time to announce the winner, make a show of it. This should be exciting for everyone, not just the winner. Thank everyone for playing along and encourage them to keep an eye open for future contests.

After the Contest

Once the contest is completed, you need to determine how successful it was. Go back to the goals you set at the beginning and see how you did.

Everything you learn here can be applied to future contests. The more you do, the better you’ll get at it. Don’t worry about failures in the beginning. They’re learning opportunities that will only make you more successful in time.

Final Thoughts on Online Contests

People love online contests. They’re relatively low-effort ways to earn a chance at winning a prize. For brands and businesses, this can be leveraged to your benefit.

For more ideas on promoting your brand, visit our Business/Finance blog.