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  1. #1
    http and a telephoto
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    Giveaways as Traffic Drivers
    The "mommyblogger" phenomenon kindof relies on product reviews and giveaways and they use this to drive some significant traffic to their websites. For the more "traditional" affiliates and bloggers, are there ways we can learn from this and adapt it without having to have product in hand?

    I think we can. I don't think you have to have a specific product in hand to be able to post a blog with information about that product. If you do get some products to review and they aren't things you actually want to keep, organize a giveaway with some requirements like: Follow you on twitter, visit certain merchants and give feedback, a treasure hunt on your site

    You can negotiate with merchants for some prizes or front the prizes yourself, look at it as paying your site visitors instead of paying a search engine for traffic.

    If you have done any of this let us know how it went and if you would do it differently. Also grouping together to promote each others sites would be beneficial.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  2. #2
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    I used to have a company that would send me Musical Cast Recordings, 1 for me to review and 1 to give away to my visitors in a contest. It was a promotional company who found me and asked me to do it for them.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  3. #3
    http and a telephoto
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    Was it successful as a traffic driver do you think?

  4. #4
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Yes I do believe in brought in more visitors, but it also brought out the automated contest entering bots. I don't know how prevalent the sweepstakes and contest sites are anymore, but back during the years I ran the contest there were sites that you could go to that would automatically enter you into any contests they found if you joined their site. I lacked the technology/skills to effectively block those and eventually quit doing the contest because I couldn't effectively block those entries. I wanted to reward my real visitors, not the automated entries.

    I would start this up again if I could find the right backend software that would help prevent some of the prior issues I had. Even if I had to purchase the CD or Gift Certificate from Amazon or whatever I choose to give away again.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  5. #5
    http and a telephoto
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    The way the bloggers set up the entries now, bots can't enter. It isn't just "drop your email in the box" they are very participatory and require steps to be followed that can't be automated. Vinny looks at some of them and says "who would do all this stuff?" then I show him the number of people that do and it blows him away.

    Most are using blogger or wordpress and some use googledocs forms.

  6. #6
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Yeah People LOVE contests, they will spill lots of info just to try and win something for nothing.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  7. #7
    http and a telephoto
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    And they will follow directions, like tell me your favorite product, join my email list, follow me on twitter, fan my facebook page.... and on and on...

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador superCool's Avatar
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    bringing this thread back to life after a couple months on the pile...aaaah - don't it feel good

    superCool has been thinking about having a giveaway on one of his sites to bring in some participants and collect some user generated content. the site talks about a niche that includes probably 50 or so product models from 4 main manufacturers. superCool is looking for real-world reviews, tips and photos related to any and all of these products. so the thought is to have a random drawing for a gift-card every month. and possibly have a 2nd gift-card to give away to the person with the best input (my choice or voting).

    what do you think of this as a starting point
    - $100 gift-card
    - accept 1 month of entries before the card is given away (and/or use a minimum number of entries - example: after 50 entries we will give away the card?)
    - user must provide a useful review or tip (superCool's judgment)
    - include one or more related quality photos and get a second entry into the drawing
    - a user may enter more than once but each entry requires additional meaningful input
    - should there be a minimum number of words of input?
    - user has the option to sign up for the site newsletter
    - the contest page url will of course include primary keywords in case it gets posted around on forums, blogs, etc..

    does anyone have thoughts or suggestions on this? do you see potential problems? is $100 per giveaway going to be enough to get people interested? how formal and detailed do you think the rules really need to be? any legal concerns?

    your friend, superCool

  9. #9
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superCool


    does anyone have thoughts or suggestions on this? how formal and detailed do you think the rules really need to be? any legal concerns?

    your friend, superCool
    I think making it difficult to enter a contest where you're benefiting from the sign ups anyway is defeating. Don't make people jump through hoops to enter - just get them to do ONE simple, solid thing. I'd venture a guess that most of your visitors are not going to feel comfortable writing out anything more than their email addy and maybe a few words about themselves. Make a poll so all they have to do to be entered is click a choice button and let those who feel comfortable leave some U.G.C. I think asking for detailed and complicated interaction is asking too much but maybe if the gift card is valuable enough, it is justified. Kinda feels like you'd be making whores out of your visitors though.

    Does that make sense or should I have gone to bed an hour ago? LOL
    Peace,

    Rexanne

    Rexanne.com
    Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic


  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador ladidah's Avatar
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    I have to agree with Rexanne.

    KISS... Keep It Simple Supercool!

    As loxly also said ask them to either friend you on facebook either to retweet something, to either do a scavenger hunt, etc. but not all the above.

    Just remember that some people have their google alert set to "contests", "giveaway", "drawing", etc. and may not necessarily be your audience. They may just pop in and follow the instructions and never revisit again.

    So, I'd start out with a smaller $ amount and simpler task and see if you can build up your audience that way. Maybe later once you have acquired their email and somehow pre-qualified your list as your actual target audience, work up to something more challenging and with higher reward.

  11. #11
    http and a telephoto
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    Actually I disagree. There are sites that do exactly what superCool is asking on a daily basis and do it quite well. The first couple of months are going to be sparce, but if it is a contest of skill (which gets you around the regulations of contests of chance) and it has levels, I think you have a chance to create something that could go viral based on the niche and the products.

    You do have to be careful about the whole FTC thing with testimonials, they might consider the posts to be "paid for" because you are offering a prize. I think asking for people to review X and supply a photo for additional entries is a great idea. You will have to do a LOT of promoting yourself to find the people to leave comments, especially the first couple of months.

    Rexanne and ladidah check out some mommybloggers contests. They ask for people to jump through hoops - and they do!

    Always do include a "follow my blog - facebook - twitter" or subscribe to newsletter as an extra entry, might as well build your list while you are at it!
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

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