Almost half of all marketers, 47%, surveyed stated that generating new traffic and leads is the “biggest marketing challenge they face.” Stay ahead of the curve and address the challenges your company is facing right now with our powerful and effective sweepstakes marketing to grow your brand.
It’s no surprise that sweepstakes and promotional marketing campaigns are becoming increasingly sought-after programs to help support the overall marketing efforts of brands of all sizes, all across the globe. With higher click-through rates and conversion rates, promotional marketing campaigns, in general, attract a large volume of qualified leads.
At Marketing Resources Inc., we’ve generated millions of leads for some of the world’s largest brands over the last 25 years and have learned a thing or two about how it’s done. Follow our sweepstakes marketing advice and practices below to execute your own effective campaigns and grow your brand. Or, contact one of our promotional marketing experts today for a free purpose-driven consultation.
First Things First: Defining Sweepstakes Marketing
Before we get too far ahead of ourselves, it’s important to first define sweepstakes marketing. Plain and simple, “sweepstakes marketing” refers to the most commonly recognized type of promotional marketing campaign, a sweepstakes.
While this definition is admittedly a bit redundant, it’s worth noting and getting correct. Over the years, the term “sweepstakes” has become synonymous with “promotional marketing.” All sweepstakes are promotional marketing campaigns, but not all promotional marketing campaigns are sweepstakes. For more details and information on the different types of promotional campaigns, check out our comprehensive guide.
Briefly, a sweepstakes is a random drawing. All entrants have the same exact opportunity to win. Ruled entirely by chance, sweepstakes create an even playing field for all participants.
For the sake of simplicity in this article, when we say “sweepstakes,” we mean exactly that. Not a contest, game, or any other type of promotional marketing campaign.
Sweepstakes Marketing Laws
Understanding the true, legal definition of a sweepstakes isn’t just a valuable piece of trivia, but can actually protect your brand, saving it from criminal charges and fines. We’ll dive into the basics of sweepstakes marketing, but do recommend you explore our guide for more information on sweepstakes laws by state.
Most promotional campaigns are variations of what’s known as a “legal lottery.” Legal lotteries, unfortunately, may only be executed by the federal government. If you’re reading this blog, chances are your brand cannot execute a legal lottery. All lotteries consist of three main elements: prize, chance, and consideration.
Sweepstakes campaigns eliminate the element of consideration, maintaining both prize and chance. Eliminating the element of consideration simply means your brand cannot require either a purchase or a significant amount of effort for an entry. If a purchase is considered a valid entry to a sweepstakes campaign, your brand must also provide an Alternate Means of Entry or an AMOE.
This alternate and free method must be clearly and conspicuously disclosed to all participants. Examples of AMOE include forms that must be filled out either by hand and mailed in, or filled out and submitted online.
Benefits of Sweepstakes Marketing
Sweepstakes support your brand’s general business and marketing goals, while attracting and delighting new and loyal customers alike. Fully customizable to meet your brand’s specific needs, your campaign to meet any number of business or marketing objectives.
Sweepstakes are highly effective lead magnets and allow brands to collect an absolute treasure trove of data on both new and existing customers. Not only that, but they delight consumers, offer them valuable rebates and rewards, and assist savvy marketers with their future marketing campaigns.
With over 70% of all large corporations planning to implement some form of promotional marketing into their overall strategy, your brand must differentiate its sweepstakes marketing strategy. 55 million Americans eagerly enter promotional sweepstakes campaigns each year, make sure they choose your brand.
Generate Leads with Sweepstakes Marketing
If you consider yourself part of the 47% of marketers who list generating leads as your primary challenge, or the (roughly) 100% of marketers who have to generate leads one way or another, you’ll love sweepstakes campaigns.
The math here is pretty simple. Your brand offers consumers something valuable to them (a prize, rebate, or reward– it just needs to be relatively valuable), in exchange for something valuable to you (their information). I scratch your back, you scratch mine? Sort of.
Across the board, today’s consumers are more willing than ever to exchange their personal data if there is a clear benefit to them, with 79% saying they’d happily make the exchange. The key here? Your consumers need something of benefit to them. That’s it, though. Over 3/4s of all consumers are potential leads, so long as you offer them something in return.
Your sweepstakes prize, therefore, should be at least “relatively” valuable to your consumers. Consider how valuable their information is to you. What are you asking them to exchange in your sweepstakes marketing? Is it a lot of personal information, or just a few surface-level questions?
Running a promotional sweepstakes campaign offers a new, engaging way for your brand to reach an even wider audience and generate more leads.
Collect Consumer Data with Sweepstakes Campaigns
If your brand is looking to collect more valuable consumer data (who isn’t, right?) a promotional sweepstakes campaign may just be the answer you need. In fact, more and more brands turn to sweepstakes marketing to achieve just that. The amount of data your brand can potentially collect via a sweepstakes campaign is overwhelming.
When developing your brand’s sweepstakes marketing campaign, pay close attention to the data you hope to collect. What questions do you need to be answered? What is it that you’re looking for?
Once you’ve identified your brand’s promotional purpose, either you or your sweepstakes administrator should then craft the campaign in a way that achieves that purpose. Include the appropriate questions in your sweepstakes entry form to ensure your brand collects the valuable data it needs to better strategize future campaigns.
Collecting data goes beyond just crafting a submission form, however. For example, if you hope to better understand what motivates your consumers, develop a sweepstakes with multiple types of prizes and make note of which ones are most popular.
Once you’ve collected your data, don’t let it go to waste. Instead, put your consumer data to work and use it to adapt and improve your overall marketing strategy. Turn the information you collect during your campaigns into actionable insights and analyze it to better understand your consumers. The more you understand them and their wants, needs, and so forth, the deeper your relationship with them.
Advertise Your Brand Or Products
Consumers aren’t the only ones who can ‘win’ at sweepstakes marketing! Your brand can capitalize on the PR and exposure it receives from promotional marketing campaigns and even use them to promote specific products. Generate buzz and create news around your brand with sweepstakes marketing.
Assuming you’ve chosen relevant and valuable promotional prizes, your brand can leverage them to increase sales to a specific product. A highly effective sweepstakes marketing strategy, you can promote specific products by tying entries to the purchase of said product. Simply identify the product (or product line) you wish to promote or increase sales of and offer sweepstakes entries to consumers who purchase those products! Of course, as mentioned above, if your brand chooses to accept sweepstakes entries via a purchase, you must also offer a free AMOE!
Ensure your on-product codes are visually appealing and eye-catching enough to stand out in the sea of competition. The average grocery store features over 40,000 separate products, so you may want to consider the creative and design of your sweepstakes marketing very closely.
You’ll also need to ensure the accurate validation of all sweepstakes entries. Protect your brand from fraud and avoid any loss with MRi’s accurate, industry-leading OCR technology. As simple as snapping a photo with a smartphone, our optical character recognition guarantees the validity of each submission received, saving your brand from any costly mishaps.
Our partners at Pepsico rely on our technology and expertise to support their sweepstakes marketing year after year. Recently, we helped them promote the sale of their Pepsi Zero Sugar products via a sweepstakes marketing campaign offering fans a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit the Super Bowl. With attractive on-package codes and in-store signage, we validated over 70 thousand purchases in just 8 short weeks.
Use Sweepstakes Marketing To Gain Retail Floor Space
Remember the whole “over 40,000 products in the average grocery store” stat we gave you a little bit ago? Not only does your brand have to convince consumers to purchase your product and bring it home, but you must also convince retailers to purchase your product and stock it on their shelves. No small feat when about 39,999 other people are trying the same thing (if you’re a data nerd like us, that means your product is just .0025% of all the options out there).
What do retailers look for when choosing brands or products to display prominently within their stores? Products that sell really well. Unless you’re a super large brand with a demonstrated history of success with products flying off the shelves, you’ll need to get creative.
Sweepstakes marketing helps your brand gain more retail floor space by offering an exciting and engaging promotion that’s sure to attract attention and create sales. Two criteria your retail partner will love to see when considering your brand for valuable space in their store.
In the same example above with the Pepsi Zero Sugar Super Bowl Campaign, Marketing Resources Inc., and Pepsi were able to leverage the impending popularity of the campaign for even more space in retail stores. We added additional signage and utilized best practices for sweepstakes marketing in-store promotions to sweeten the deal, guaranteeing Pepsi prime retail location within stores.
Marketing Resources Inc. As Your Brand’s Sweepstakes Administrator
Sweepstakes marketing is a simple solution to a number of common marketing obstacles. The best part: the data gathered from every sweepstakes will give you the information you need to make an even more successful campaign next time. And with MRi’s IDEA process on your side, our promotional experts will guide you through the process, from strategy to execution. We will identify your promotion’s unique purpose so your sweepstakes will resonate with your consumers.
In addition, we gather the data and provide you with the tools and insights you need to continue your success on future promotional campaigns. Ready to get started with a sweepstakes? Contact our experts today for a free consultation regarding your brand’s purpose.