Getting your website to emerge from the search engine smoke is no easy task. Google continues to tighten its grasp over link building and content marketing regulations, meaning marketers really have to dig deep for some creative solutions. One idea you may want to consider adding to your arsenal is hosting a contest or giveaway.
Running a giveaway for SEO is nothing new, and they can be a great way to stimulate interests in your brand. Just a few weeks ago, the Eyeflow team held a contest of their own, giving away a Blu-Ray copy of the Back to the Future 30th Anniversary Trilogy set in celebration of Marty McFly’s arrival to the future.
Hosting a giveaway is a great way to attract new leads, boost engagement and gain valuable SEO signals for your brand, but it certainly doesn’t come easy. Here are some tips to get you started creating your own giveaway while reaping all the SEO benefits that come along with it.
Step One: Decide the Prize
It may sound like an obvious step, but deciding the perfect prize to giveaway should take some time. After all, it is the prize that will work to ignite excitement in your audience. Ask yourself:
- Who do I want to attract – potential leads or freebie seekers?
- Is my prize enticing enough to motivate my audience to participate?
- Is my prize too trendy? Does it limit my giveaway’s longevity?
Taking some time to think about your prize can make the difference between a good contest and a great one. If you’re really looking to create a viral buzz around your brand, keep your eyes on the prize to have your contest start off strong. Here are just some suggestions to get your creative juices flowing:
- Gift Cards – A gift card is a great option for almost any giveaway, a surefire way to attract entries.
- Your Own Products – Are you a retail business? Try giving away one of your own products and perhaps you’ll walk away with a brand loyal winner.
- Something in Your Niche – Guarantee your giveaway attracts the right entries by offering up something in your industry’s niche while remaining relevant to your target persona.
- Consider Partnering – Partnering with a brand or sponsor can help extend the visibility of your giveaway.
Step Two: The Trade-Off
Giveaways are never free. They’re given away in exchange for participation. What you make your users do in return for entry is entirely up to you, and knowing what you want may help you capture new customers. What you get in return can range from a few simple quick clicks to fully-fledged forms.
No matter what you choose, you want to find the right balance between incentive and return. Asking too much for a prize that may not be as spectacular as you hoped might limit participation, while asking for too little in return can limit your giveaway’s potential.
Step Three: Building the Giveaway Gateway
Once you have your prize and your trade-off, it’s time to build the gateway to your giveaway. Start off by choosing the perfect platform to host your contest. The platform you use to host your giveaway should be built as an extension to your current website, helping you collect valuable backlinks as the page is shared across social media platforms. Once you have your page set up, turn to a pre-packaged contest automation tool to easily build your entry form and get your contest rolling.
Your work doesn’t end there. You’ll want to make sure that your landing page text is fully optimized to drive traffic on its own. Focus on targeting keywords that align with your prize and your audience’s interests, create clear Call-To-Actions and give visitors a sense of urgency with a countdown clock.
Any successful contest campaign should incorporate a solid content marketing strategy behind it. Leveraging the appropriate content channels will help kick start your contest and help drive your existing audience to the giveaway. Focus on creating content that appeals to your target audience, including:
- A series of blog posts that highlight how your audience benefits from entering the contest
- An email blast introducing the contest to your mailing list while nurturing any prospective leads
- Sharing your contest with promotional posts on social media to engage your brand’s community
Step Four: Promote Your Contest Like Crazy
Make no mistake – without promotion, your giveaway will be dead in the water. While many marketers rely on their own network to spread word of your giveaway, it may not be enough. Promotion of your giveaway can take many forms, ranging from free press to slightly more expensive options. Here are just some ideas to help you get started:
- Encourage entrants to share your contest on social media with added entries and social share buttons.
- Submit to giveaway sites that are dedicated to driving giveaway hunters to your page.
- Push out a PR campaign with a press release to build visibility.
- Leverage your partner’s audience with cross-promotional posts.
- Set up social media advertising to drive traffic to your giveaway.
Promotion is imperative to your giveaway, and often overlooked. Never expect your prize to be enough on its own to generate excitement and gather entries. While a good prize helps, you’ve definitely got to put in some extra effort to take your contest viral.
Collecting the Benefits
Done correctly, contests can be a quick and easy way to increase the visibility of your site, boost your SEO efforts and engage a new audience.
Following the strategies above, our 45-day contest campaign was wildly successful – generating over 7,000 page views, 6,000 social shares and 314 backlinks to boost Eyeflow’s brand authority and presence all across the web. In the end, it’s about connecting with your community in a new way, creating a contest your audience is excited to share. All the while, you’ll be growing your following with engaged visitors who are happy to win some cool prizes.
Leveraging a contest to your advantage is just one way to drive new traffic to your website and bolster your SEO campaign. Keep the momentum going strong with help from the inbound marketing experts at Eyeflow. Deploying our 360-degree approach to SEO, our team drives traffic to your site like never before – increasing leads, engagement, experiences and conversions along the way. Make sure you are making the most out of your marketing efforts and watch your brand authority soar to new heights with help from Eyeflow Internet Marketing.
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