Sunday, September 18, 2011

Guest Post- Get ready for #Giveaway Season!

In anticipation of a VERY BIG giveaway schedule ahead, Marie from Howard House Reviews was kind enough to put together some giveaway tips and advice!
 Howard House Reviews
Review and giveaway blogs are just what they sound like. Blogs that are set up to tell you about new and fun products, and give you the chance to win them. You can win anything from baby bottles to cash, from socks to jewelry, kitchen appliances...even mattresses for your bed 

Generally, a blogger will post his or her review of a product, then at the end, give you the requirements to enter a giveaway for the item they reviewed. Let's start with an example. We'll use my blog, Howard House Reviews, and let's say I received a yogurt maker from xyz company ( the sponsor) to review. I'll use it for a few days, then write a post, usually around 300 to 500 words describing my experience. Then I'll let you know that xyz company has offered an extra one to give away to my readers (new and old). XYZ would like to gain some new FB fans, some new twitter followers and possibly new reader's for their newsletter. As a blogger, I also want to gain new followers via social media, as that is one way that my popularity is gauged by marketers when decided which blogs to approach to review and promote their products. So. For the xyz yogurt maker, I will give you (the reader) several different ways to enter to win. I will ask you to "like" myself and xyz on facebook. You will do so, then leave me a comment with your email address stating you completed that method of entry. Then, for another chance in the draw, you can "follow" me and xyz on Twitter. You leave me another comment stating you did so. Other entry options might include: visiting the sponsors website and telling me your favorite item, signing up for a newsletter, leaving me a comment on a different post on my blog, a daily vote, a daily tweet etc. Each entry options is accompanied by an additional comment. Let's say I get 100 people entering the giveaway and each person had the option of completing 7 entry methods. Let's say everyone did all 7. I would 700 comments, or entries on my blog. At the end of the giveaway, I will use a random number "picker" to choose a number between 1 and 700. We'll say the number chosen was 355. I would find the 355th comment, verify that the person did complete each entry they said they did...then send them an email that says " Congrats! you just won the XYZ yogurt maker from Howard House!" Shipping would be arranged and some lucky ducky just got a new yogurt maker! Easy and fun!!

So you see, the process is a cinch! Here are a few tips.
#1- Always make sure you complete entries correctly. If an entry is to leave a comment on a different post... actually do it. How awful to get chosen as the winner just to be disqualified for not really doing the entry.
#2- Always check to see if there is a mandatory entry- again, if you don't do that one right, none of the others will count.
#3- If you don't have FB or twitter- set up a free account- often you need to be following a company to qualify.
#4- It is incredibly rude just to "fan" either the blogger or the sponsor so you can win, then "unfollow" or "unlike" after the giveaway has ended. Don't be a user. Support the ones who are working hard to bring you these great chances to win.
#5 Visit the blogger even if you aren't entering one of their contests- most bloggers have other content and appreciate comment love. Show some sweetness and help keep their traffic stats high. Remember, better traffic means better giveaways.
#6 Tell your friends and share the chance to win an awesome prize!!

Marie Howard is the owner of Howard House Reviews. A giveaway blog where you can read reviews about great products and then have the chance to win them!