Six contesting myths debunked
According to Borrell Associates, spending on online promotions is expected to surpass $75 billion by 2016, which is more than double its current level. How are you capitalizing on the exploding world of online promotions?
One particularly lucrative way is with online contesting. Contests represent a significant revenue opportunity for media. You can’t afford to let this opportunity slip away from you by not including them in your promotions strategy. The time to start cashing in on contests is now!
Not sold on contesting yet? Below, I’ve explored a six contesting myths and set the record straight.
- I don’t think contests are profitable.
There is a huge revenue potential around contesting. We’ve seen media companies drive sponsorship revenue in six figures – and that’s just from one contest! If you focus on building a year-long contesting plan, you can build a significant and sustainable revenue stream. Even if you don’t secure sponsors for every contest you run, the ROI you gain from building your email database could translate to serious revenue for other initiatives you have, including: a deals program, newsletters, email programs you sell to advertisers and more.
- I can’t run contests because my competitors run contests.
Take contesting out of the picture and you’ll find that your competitor probably uses a lot of the same marketing and audience engagement techniques you do. So the question is, are you going to let them grab up all the promotional sponsorship dollars in the market? Grab your share of the market by offering your advertisers a more valuable promotional package centered around a contest that targets their key demographics.
- The benefits of contesting are short lived.
Contests are an efficient way to build your email database, gain a social media following, and encourage players to sign-up for other communications from your company. All of these tactics build lasting relationships with your audience. In fact, by just getting more fans on Facebook you can see tremendous benefits. Ad Age recapped a study done by SocialCode, which found Facebook fans are 291% more likely to interact with your page than non-fans.
- I run contests on my own and don’t need help from a third party.
You may do contests occasionally, but in order to drive the most value from contests, you should have a focus and a plan around your contesting strategy with measurable goals. Often, third parties are able to focus on developing features that will help you and your players have the best experience. By having a partner, you get the benefits of running contests that involve minimal effort on your part, plus you can focus the time you would have spent building a contest on selling and promoting your contest. Many offer pre-designed, turnkey contests or even contests that are designed and managed for you. Using technology partner is extremely helpful, plus Facebook requires pages to use a third party platform to run contests on their site.
- I don’t think my sponsors will see value in contests.
For years, media companies have been driving significant revenue and audience growth around contests. One of the best things about contests is that they allow you to help your advertisers reach a niche audience. Is a salon one of your advertisers? Run a makeover contest that will help them reach their target audience and drive new customers, email sign-ups and likes for their Facebook page. Another way you can drive revenue around a contest is to sell it directly to your advertisers. This lets you respond to specific advertisers’ needs with a result-driven promotion. See how one media company drove thousands of dollars around this revenue approach.
- I don’t think contests will create excitement with my audience.
If you haven’t run contests before, you might not realize how much passion contests bring out in your audience. People look forward to annual contests and the love the opportunity to participate each year. Contests centered around pro and college football, Mother’s and Father’s Day, back-to-school and Halloween are all contests you can run each year. If you have the right tools in place, your contests can create excitement with your audience by having the right enterprise-level tools in place to help your contest reach maximum viral participation.
What other benefits do you see from running contests? Share your ideas in the comments.