KickoffLabs Blog:

The Keys To Killer Online Contests

By Josh Ledgard

Sep 19th, 2014

Our chat series is a chance for us to share knowledge we’ve acquired running our product and watching what works for our customers that run successful campaigns. Today we’re taking a look at best practices for running an amazing contest or giveaway.

We’re framing these best practices with some blog posts that we’ve done in the last few months (look for links to that awesome content within the post.

Before the Contest


Have a Goal & Target Audience

Use existing audience knowledge to create something for THEM. This is important for figuring out the best prize for your audience. Look for your influential customers trends and habits and cater to them.

Visually Stunning = 3.5X More Shares

If you’re using a visually stunning background or main image, you’re going to get more people interested.

  • Simple Form – Limit form fields to the absolute necessary.
  • No Clutter – Don’t overcomplicate. Keep the page to a bare minimum, IT WORKS!
  • Incentive for Everyone – Make your signups feel as if they got something in return.

Co-Promotion = Expanded Audience

  • More Prizes – Contact companies that offer related products to include as a prize package.
  • Targeted Niche – Niche down and give away something that your audience wants.
  • Leveraged Networks – Use the networks of your prize partners to expand your contest reach.

Cuteness = Engaged Audience

Believe it or not, images of cute things (babies, animals, faces, etc) gets people’s attention.

People’s good mood increases, they focus more intently and are more ready to take action.

See our customers metrics and read about the studies that prove all of these theories by clicking here.

During the Contest


Evergreen Contests = More Moments

  • More Opportunities – Ongoing contests are a great way to continually reach new audiences.
  • Different Segments – Run different contests for each customer type.
  • Different Timing – Any time of year can be a good time to celebrate your customers with a contest.

Earn Likes = More Exposure

Use easy, actionable steps that lead to a stronger email connection. Guide people down a path that includes “liking” your page on Facebook, “following” you on Twitter, then entering their email address.

Leverage Scarcity = Only X Get In

Scarcity works because people perceive that something is more valuable if it is less attainable… If everyone wants it, it must be good!

Everyone is a Little Viral

“Give them a reason to share. If you give them value for telling their friend about your brand, they will take on the role of brand advocate for you and tell your story in a more authentic way.” – Marissa, Co-Ed Supply

Want even more details on creating a successful online contest that converts? Click here for the step-by-step guide!

After the Contest


Follow-Up: Add Context in Email

Once somebody enters your contest, what’s the immediate thing you’re going to do long term for them? “You’ve just been entered in to win X!” versus: “Thank you for entering!”…

Follow-Up: Encourage Sharing

Increase your chances of winning by sharing this with the closest 5 to 500 people you can think of.

Learn how to send a perfect autoresponse message by checking out the post here!

Leave a trace = Generate post contest leads

Create an event around the contest winners and use this as a chance to announce the next contest!

Key Takeaways

  • Attention-grabbing visual content drives engagement.
  • Leverage the social networks of contest partners.
  • Empower customers to do the marketing for you.
  • Collecting email addresses can be essential to your business success.
  • It’s not about the number of signups, it’s about generating awareness.

KickoffLabs Roadmap for Contest Success

What makes KickoffLabs the perfect marketing tool for managing your contests and entries?

Find out more about the benefits of running your contest on KickoffLabs here.

  • Launch a beautiful contest page in minutes with our pre-built optimized themes.
  • Analytics and metrics to see how your contest is performing in real-time.
  • Publish to Facebook, WordPress & anywhere else on the web with a single click.
  • Identify and reward influencers that drive the most entries…

These are only a fraction of the powerful features included with your KickoffLabs account.

Ready to start growing your audience?

Signup for your free trial and start building smarter campaigns today!



-Izzy Palmerin, Growth and Conversion Rate Optimization at KickoffLabs

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