Monday, March 2, 2009

Don't want to host your own giveaway?

Sweet 'N' Sassy Girls

No prob.
Just have Sweet 'n' Sassy girls host it for you, but keep in mind, there are pros and cons to giving away your merchandise in this manner.

1. These kinds of sites have a lot of steady traffic. Sweet 'n' Sassy Girls frequently has over 100 entries in their giveaways, so whether you use this site or have any other blogger host your giveaway, there's an opportunity for a lot of traffic to clamor over your loot.
2. Less planning, no dealing with advertising on sites that announce giveaways, no advertising to worry about, to comments to babysit (to weed out any possible comment spam.)

1. These giveaways are hosted on another site which may not necessarily increase traffic to your site.
2. Because you may not get the increase in traffic generated by a giveaway, there's less opportunity to market yourself and the other items you have for sale.
3. No chance to encourage people to subscribe to or follow your blog.

Remember - hosting giveaways are not to get rid of product, but to boost your marketing efforts.

Giveaways on your own site will:
1. Expose new prospective customers to your product line.
2. Generate new traffic to your site in hopes they will like what they see, then return again and again.
3. Add one more name and address (the winner's) to your contact list for future marketing, such as snail mail newsletters, post card advertising, etc.
4. Encourage visitors to subscribe to your site or your email newsletter so you can continue marketing to them on a regular basis.
5. Bottom line, your giveaway is part advertising and part lead generation for your ongoing marketing efforts. If your giveaway doesn't provide a way to bring new traffic to your site, you're not only missing out on a fantastic marketing opportunity, but you're throwing away the money you spent on creating and shipping the prize.

I'm not bashing sites that host giveaways for you, but I want you to understand the difference between hosting your own vs. having someone do the work for you. If you are still interested in having Sweet 'n' Sassy Girls or another site host a giveaway for you, make sure that you have a way to capture the audience for your own marketing program.

If you remember, I posted about Handmade Showcase a couple weeks ago (read that post here.) She hosts giveaways for other shops, but also includes a full interview and gives her readers a more in-depth look into you and your shop. While you may not be able to capture a lot of marketing info like if you host your own giveaway, this is a great way to drive extra traffic to your site where you could include a few posts inviting people to sign up for your newsletter or use other techniques to market to the new crowd shopping by.

(And yes. The Sweet 'n' Sassy badge is in the sidebar for easy future reference.)

Any thoughts on this?
Have you done giveaways?
What worked the best for you?

(And remember, all comments are do-follow, so your comment left here supports YOU.)

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