Thursday, February 2, 2012

How to Dominate Giveaways

This post is going to be my personal guide on how to start winning giveaways at least once a week. Currently, I average about two a week, but there have been some weeks where I have won multiple giveaways each day. So many people have asked me how that is possible, so I'm going to start from the very beginning - for those of you who are not so giveaway-savvy. I only started entering them and really reading blogs in August, so I too was lost at first with the terminology.. "What's a GFC.. What's a Rafflecopter?" I'll start with the basics, so if you're already past all of this, you might want to skip towards the bottom! Here is a list of what you need to do and what you need to know in order to get started:

  • Get some patience if you don't have any! ;)
  • Create these accounts (if you haven't already)..in order of importance
              - Facebook
              - Twitter
              - Google
              - Stumble Upon 
              - You Tube
              - Etsy
              - Goodreads

Most of these are very straight forward..just fill in your information and confirm in your email.


  • Create a new email address
              I used Yahoo to create my new email address that I use for giveaways, blogging, etc. You will find that once you start entering a multitude of giveaways, your regular email account will become full very quickly. Another problem is that your email address is exposed on many websites, which generates a lot of spam. This is not an email account to ignore..simply a supplementary one. In fact, I probably use my new email address more than my original one. Giveaways will use email addresses for signing up for sponsor deals and newsletters, as well as for signing up at the blog itself. They are quick and easy entries, so well worth your time! Also, this email address will be placed in the Rafflecopter form (if you are not logged in via facebook) or in every non-Rafflecopter post that you make to enter.

  • Become familiar with the terminology
            Now I will discuss some of the commonly used terms for various necessary entries on giveaways. You will need to be familiar with GFC (Google Friend Connect), although this will be gone as of March, 2012. Right now it is one of the best ways to gain followers for a blog. You can link up to this using your twitter account or your Google account. When a blog asks you to "Follow them via GFC", just look for the box that says follow, with various pictures, and hit follow. Its as simple as that. There is one on the top right-hand corner of my blog under "Followers" if you need to practice. Google+ is the newest fad. You will need to go to this link and create a page. When a blog asks for you to follow via Google +, you need to find the "Google +" box on their blog. It usually has a little icon and a button that says "Add to Circle". There is one on the lower right-hand side of my blog for you to test. You have the option of adding someone to your friend, acquaintance, or just "following" circles by just clicking the button. A Rafflecopter is the newest and easiest way to host a giveaway. All of my giveaways utilize Rafflecopter forms. You are given the choice of logging in via facebook or with just your name and email address. I would suggest changing your facebook email address to your supplementary email to avoid filling your mailbox. If you just choose to log in using your name and email address, you will have to keep logging into Facebook to like pages and blog posts, and it can become rather tedious. Rafflecopter forms have easy "Did it!" buttons to click after you have completed an entry, and extra info boxes where you should always supply the usernames that you used while creating the accounts above. If you are asked to "Tweet" a giveaway, you simply hit the tweet button that is given to you on the Rafflecopter form, or you look for a "T" (for twitter) or bird button at the bottom of the post. After you tweet the giveaway, you will need to copy the URL of your post and put it into the extra info box on the form. To find the URL, you simply look for the timestamp..for example "56 minutes ago" when you made the tweet and click there. You may also be able to "open" your tweet and hit more details. It is very similar to a facebook share. To share a post, you may copy the URL of the giveaway and post it as your status, or you may find a blue facebook button at the bottom of the giveaway post that will do it for you. After you have posted, look for the timestamp and copy that URL. If a blog asks you to Stumble a post, you can look for the blue "S" button, or you can copy the URL of the giveaway, go to your Stumble Upon account, and click "Add Site". Via Etsy, you may be asked to heart items or sellers, which will be fairly obvious once you are at an Etsy profile. On YouTube you will be asked to subscribe to videos (also fairly obvious) and on Good Reads you may be asked to friend request someone.

  • Two easy giveaway sources
            - If you are looking for something quick and easy, or just another way to enter giveaways, I highly suggest looking into Facebook. There are two applications that make giveaways extremely easy..both are named Sweepstakes! Search "Sweepstakes" in the bar on top of Facebook, and look for the app with a green, four leaf clover and the app with the blue square with an S in the middle. The first Sweepstakes app has contests and sweepstakes available. I always click "sweepstakes" and then "ending soon". Make sure to avoid any giveaways for local services that do not apply to you, or giveaways that look foreign, since this app is international. These giveaways mostly require that you "like" the sponsor page, and fill out your basic information. I keep the main page open and create new tabs each time I open a giveaway, as when you hit back it doesn't always lead you to the same spot. I have won many giveaways this way! The second app is even easier, but the problem is that people have caught on to that aspect..and its addicting as well. In this app all you need to do is click "like" and then enter for any giveaway. I have won 5 giveaways, but I have entered 1500. You can do the math to figure out those odds ;). However, its a lot of fun and you find some great products and pages while browsing. Watch out for giveaways that charge shipping (it will appear as a number next to a car) and for ones that want you to purchase things in order to get the prize (buy one get one deals, or something like that)..I fell for it once!

  • To get the "biggest" prizes!
               -If you love to open big, assorted packages of cool things, these are for you. Blog hops are a fun way to get a list of many giveaways all at once, and to "hop" through them to win some very awesome prizes! I always start at the top of the list and try to enter every one. Just google "Blog Hop" and you will be set! I suggest that you check out http://www.bloghopseveryday.com for some daily link-ups. I know that Valentine's Day hops are right around the corner. If you enter all of the giveaways on the list, you usually win at least one, so keep that in mind! Even if the entries are high, you have a chance. Another great set of Blog Hops that I forgot to mention involve books..there is a very active community of book-bloggers out there with some awesome hops! They usually have 200 or more participating blogs.
  • Complete all the entries
               - Don't get lazy! No, one entry out of a possible 60 is not sufficient. Especially if everyone else is doing all 60 entries...this is where patience really comes in. I promise that the entries will become fluid and painless once you get into the swing of things! Most people do not do all of the entries, so if you do, you will have the greater odds of winning.

  • Look for Low Entry Giveaways

            - Low entry giveaways, in my opinion, are the best ones to enter! I check Tight Wad in Utah religiously, which gives giveaways with low entries that are ending that week in a nice, concise list. Other great resources are Just Another HatOh So Savvy Mom, and Blog Giveaway Directory. I'm sure there are a thousand more, but those are my absolute favorites.
  • Look for Non-Rafflecopter Giveaways 
            - Look for Non-Rafflecopter giveaways that offer extra entries for each additional giveaway that you enter. If the blog is hosting twenty giveaways, that's twenty additional entries.. a task other people rarely complete! I start by entering one, and then opening each giveaway in another tab. Then, each time I enter one, I go back through all the tabs and add that giveaway as an extra entry. Don't be surprised if you end up winning four or five items from the same blog within the same time period using this method.
  • Sign up for Coupon With Cents
                           -Another personal favorite of mine is a forum-based website called Coupon with Cents. You need to make an account here to be able to post on their various deals, freebies, and giveaway opportunities, and it is well worth it! (If you want, you can always tell them that JessicaPeeli referred you ;) ) Once you have signed up, you will see a "Giveaways" tab at the top of the site, where you simply respond to their posts in order to enter. What I love about this site is that it is extremely personal, active, and fun-loving. I have won many items here, and the ladies are all super friendly and I get the items so quickly! They even offer Moderator opportunities to active members, so if you are looking for a chance to do a little blogging yourself, go take them up on it!

  • Be respectful
                  -Remember, these bloggers are investing a lot of time into these product reviews. Even though I am giving you tips on how to win giveaways, it is important to really connect with each blog that you enter at. Never like a blog's page and then unlike it after the giveaway has ended..that is extremely disrespectful and will get you banned from most pages. Pay attention to the reviews, and always remember to thank the blogger for the chance, and to thank the sponsor as well!

I will add more when it comes to me. Good luck and let me know when you start winning!

2 comments:

  1. How do you deal with the fact that following multiple twitter accounts will catch Twitter's attention? I had my brand new Twitter account frozen because of this. They later fixed the problem, but it took a whole week.

    Oh, found you through the Alexa Drop Hop. ;)

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