I never did giveaways before, but when I saw a ton of mommy bloggers using Rafflecopter, I decided to try it on a few of my sites. Rafflecopter is a free tool that you can use to do giveaways on your site or your blog. The thing that I liked most about Rafflecopter is that you can create your giveaways in less than two minutes and you can set up different things that your readers have to do to enter including liking your Facebook FanPage, following you on Twitter, signing up for your newsletter, commenting on or sharing posts, taking surveys, etc… Then when you set up all of your tasks for your readers to follow, you just copy and paste the code into your site. After trying different things with Rafflecopter, here are 5 ways that I am using or or am going to try using Rafflecopter to make money.
1. SEO Benefits and future sales.
One thing that was awesome with one of my sites is that a ton of sites picked up the giveaway, including many that were relevant to the topic of my site. One thing that I noticed on almost all of the sites that picked my giveaway up is that they linked to my giveaway off of the title tag or name of the post. In this case they actually linked to my site off of the product name. Because of the backlinks and social triggers, I was able to begin ranking organically, my post is now ranking for the product term in the top three. Because it is ranking for the product and it has a great call to action in the title, it could begin to draw in clicks that I wouldn’t have had if I wasn’t in the top 3 for the term. When I realized what was happening and how Rafflecopter was helping me with SEO, I placed widgets with the products at a discount on my site and when the contest is over, I’ll still have traffic coming in and hopefully they’ll shop through the widgets. I actually did already start to sell other products through them so this can actually help to work.
2. Ask them to shop
I don’t know if this is legal or not, but you have the option in Rafflecopter to set how many custom entries you want and how many entries you can give someone for performing an action. You can also require a response from it. One thing that I may try and test is doing a giveaway for a large or expensive item and giving extra points if the person buys something. To make sure they did, I’ll ask for the transaction number when they leave their comment in Rafflecopter and also use my Affiliate link to make sure that it matches up with sales by using a custom link for the contest. Then when the contest is almost over I’ll send the list of transaction numbers to the advertiser and make sure they are legit sales.
Before you do this, you should contact your lawyer and also remember that incentivizing traffic can lead to bad sales and bad relationships with your merchants and advertisers. You can also upset your readers if some of them think that it is unfair to give people who shop to get more entries than others who didn’t want to shop. You’ll also want to make sure that they can only do it once if it is a free trial or subscription model, otherwise they may end up signing up multiple times and cancelling everything or using fake information which will make you look bad with your merchants and advertisers.
3. Keep track of results and tie it into your media kit
One thing that is great about Rafflecopter is that you get a ton of data. You can measure interest by category, product or niche and use this data to get more advertisers and giveaways. You can also charge a fee for the giveaways if you can show results and actual orders or an ROI from your giveaways. You can track this through Affiliate links, asking for transaction numbers, having the Merchants and advertisers give you tracking links and have them pull reports for you from their own tracking, etc… With this data you can show the effectiveness of a contest or giveaway and why they should spend money with you instead of someone else.
4. Place a CPM ad in the post
If your traffic is high enough, you can place ads directly into the giveaway post on a CPM basis. The nice thing about this is that these people will come back over and over driving up your impressions and giving your Advertisers more exposure to them. If the ads are relevant, you can also try a CPC campaign in it. Because of the repeat exposure, people will be more likely to click through if your ads are relevant. One thing you don’t want to do though is to require them to click on the banner since that would be click fraud, lower your conversion rates and also make your Advertisers think your traffic quality is poor.
5. Set up a CPA for partners and advertisers
This is one that I think could be extremely profitable. Set up price points like .50 or $1 per twitter follower or for a Facebook Fanpage like and have the person place their handle or name that they liked the page with in the comments section. Even if you paid for the original giveaway, you could potentially make the money back and more if your following is loyal and likes and follows the advertisers you get to pay you for the followers. You do have to make sure that they continue to follow and like these pages or your advertisers may get mad and not work with you again. If you create one of these deals, set it up so you get paid one week later or at the end of the month on an invoice and count how many followers and fans are still following and have still liked the page. This way you can bill accurately and everyone will be happy.
I’m absolutely in love with Rafflecopter and am having fun with it on all of my sites. You can enter to win one hour of free consulting with me here (until the contest expires in a day or two) and I am going to be launching new giveaways including conference passes, marketing tool giveaways, etc… each Friday for the next few weeks. If you have other ways you are using Rafflecopter to make money or run contests, feel free to leave a comment below.