Last week I wrote a couple of posts about how to run a successful blog competition. Today I thought I’d give you a little background information (case study) on how I’m currently running one.
The competition is over at DPS where I announced it about 12 hours ago with a post here at Win a Digital Camera! [Forum Competition] (feel free to enter if you’d like to).
Using some of the points in my recent post on running successful blog competitions here’s how I’m approaching this one:
Objective – to get new members, reconnect with inactive members and increase page views. My hope is that running a competition over 3 weeks will give members incentive to return to the forums over a longer period of time – they say that it only takes a few days of doing something to form a habit – my hope is that doing something for three weeks will do just that.
Prizes – Last year I ran a similar competition with the same objectives but put photography books up as prizes. My thought this year is that a great new camera would probably excite people a little more. While the last competition did have some great results this one is really creating much more buzz.
Having runners up prizes increases the chance of a win. While they are not as valuable I’ve gone for ‘relevant’ on all of the prizes yet am giving runners up some choice in which prize they win.
I’ve also opted for a self funded prize in this case. I’ve had sponsors on DPS offer prizes previously but this limited what I could offer in terms of relevancy. Doing it this way also means I can promote some Amazon affiliate links which will hopefully drive some sales and help me off set the cost of the prizes.
Rules – I’m attempting to keep this competition as simple as possible. All people have to do to enter is be an active member. Every post they make in the forum automatically adds to their chances to win. I’ve used this method before and it works well as it not only gets new members signed up – but it gets them using the forum.
There is a danger with people entering in spammy ways – but last time I did this I made it clear that that kind of behavior wouldn’t be tolerated and didn’t have any issues. I have a good moderation team who are onto any bad behavior pretty quickly so am not expecting any trouble.
Promotion – I’ve been promoting this competition in a few ways. Obviously there is a blog post, I’ve also posted an announcement in the forums that appears at the top of many pages as well as posting a post that announces it in the general chit chat section of the forum.
Later today I’ll also email all inactive forum members and on Friday the normal DPS newsletter will go out with a prominent promotion of the competition. All in all there’s some good buzz going on already.
Results (so far) - Since starting the competition 12 hours ago the forums have been particularly hot with 100+ new members, quite a few older members coming back to get active again and a marked increase in page views. There are around 4 times the normal visitor numbers on the blog at the moment.
It’s too early to tell what the results will be as I’m yet to complete the promotion of it – but the early signs are that it will be a worthwhile venture.