My Contest Strategy 101: The Epic Way To Grow Email List



Note From Luke: Hey I’m back from Vacation! I’ve got pictures coming to Facebook to share too! I’m happy that I took off but now that I’m home I’m ready to get back doing what I love and that’s to write, study, and talk with you! Let’s get started.

My Contest Strategy 101: The Epic Way To Grow Email List

As we know contest are great when it comes to growing the list. If you’re not building the list, I would highly suggest doing it. Your traffic will boom and so will the profits. 

I’m running my own contest as we speak. I’m here looking at my contest stats, and I just wanted to share with you things that are working for me. 

Here’s my contest here: Win This Plugin That Helped Josh Grow his 200k Email List. Feel free to join! I’m giving away KingSumo the WordPress Plugin. It’s the contest plugin I use and it works great. It’s a $594 value for the business package, and it’s the best of the best. The one who get’s the most people to join wins! You do this by simply sharing as much as possible.

So here’s what I’m doing to promote this thing on a small budget.

My plan consists of:

  1. Tweeting about it
  2. Emailing my list about it
  3. Contacting major bloggers about it
  4. Submitting it to contest blogs
  5. Promoting it on Facebook Ads
  6. Writing Guest Post with the Contest Link
  7. Guest Posting to Drive More Traffic To My Site
  8. Putting an ad on my site about it
  9. Writing about it on my blog
  10. Get major bloggers to tweet about it
  11. Getting insight from other blogs about my contest presentation
  12. Submit to Reddit, Stumbleupon, and related sites
  13. Promote in groups pages on Facebook and Google+

These things are working great, but I’m learning many things along the way. Only by A/B testing have I discovered what works for me. The contest has been running for 30 days, which I believe was a smart move on my part. The reason being is because it’s my first contest and I needed to finalize (and learn) what worked best as I got closer to the final day of the contest (October 9th, 2014).

The Prize Is Crucial

My prize with Kingsumo is a great one and so happy that I chose it. Only thing is that it’s still fairly new. With that being said, the marketing outreach is limited compared to what it will be 5 years from now. This limits the virality of my contest because it’s not fully mature in it’s customer base. That’s the only downfall, but as a product I love it, and would recommend it. 

Things I Learned Along The Way

One thing I learned was that minimum words on the contest page is what you want. By simply stating what the prize did and how much it was worth, I saw an uptick of entries. Did I mention that titles mean everything also? Make that title say it all. 

Second thing I learned was to email the contestants as it got closer to the end date. I reminded them who I was and how they could win. The one who got the most people to join won! By emailing them once a week it kept the shares coming. I also shared who was winning by giving away hints along the way. I would include the name within the email but never the full email. This kept them excited! I like that:)

One thing I plan to do is email the contestants twice within the last week. I’m going to tell them that entry points will double (or even triple) if they start sharing until it ends. Not only does it give a sense of urgency but eagerness to win this thing.

Guest Posting And Tweets From Other Bloggers

I got some bloggers to tweet about the contest. One blogger had around 50k followers. He left the tweet up for about an hour before tweeting something else. From that one tweet I got around 10 people to join. I also did some guest posting on other blogs during the contest and it really helps get it out there. I wrote for Problogger, Convince&Convert, Jeff Bullas during all this.

Problogger was published and later found out that the contest link was broken:( That hurt. But then Convince & Convert released my article and I saw an uptick of 30 contestants that day above usual. I mentioned nothing about the contest on Jeff Bullas’ blog, but did talk about email marketing. Once that traffic came to me, they joined the contest because of the giveaway being advertised on my blog.

The hard part though is this, and that’s convincing the blogger to let you link to the contest. Not easy.

My Conversion Rates

Looking at my traffic it seems for every hundred people who came to look at my contest, 20 actually signed up. That makes my conversion rate around 20%. That may be horrible, but I believe that will change when my new format kicks in. When I say new, I mean short in word count. My contest page was full of words before and I regret it now.

Final Summary

Biggest thing about this whole thing is that I have learned a lot and so happy I decided to do this contest. Main thing is to have fun and make it a learning experience. 

I may mention the results in a later post of how it went. I’m happy with them and can’t wait to see how it ends:)

Thanks For Reading!