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29 sep

Marketing to Millennials with a Sweepstakes

By: Julie Link | In: Advertising, Best Practices, Contests, Facebook, Instagram, Marketing, Sweepstakes, User Generated Content

Marketing to millennials can be a challenge. They are currently the largest living generation and that’s a lot of people to target with many different personalities and habits. So, if you are a brand, how do you get their attention and stand out among all the messaging sent their way? Surprisingly, marketing to millennials with a sweepstakes or contest is an extremely effective method. Below I will break down a few reasons why this method works.

They Love to Share

Millennials love to share with anyone and everyone who will like, retweet or view their messaging. Whether it’s Instagramming a photo of their lunch, snapchatting a reunion with their best friend, or tweeting their opinion on the election, sharing is their impulse reaction. Why not take advantage of that constant need to share by inviting millennials to share their talents by snapchatting a video for their chance to win a prize.

Here’s an excerpt from an article on Marketingland.com on the subject:

“I didn’t expect that my daughter and her friends were looking for coupons but was a little surprised that they were willing to actively engage with the brand and even enter into a traditional sweepstakes (albeit via sharing a picture).” For the full article, click here

They Love to Engage

This is the next step that organically occurs after asking millennials to share. They in turn engage with your brand. When running a sweepstakes or contest, think about engaging with millennials rather than focusing on selling your product or service. Have your prospective customer tell a story with your hashtag. The more you engage with them by having them organically spread content about your brand, the better your content and relationship with that millennial will be. American Eagle’s latest #WeAllCan campaign is a great example of this.

They Love to Reach People

The natural step of sharing a photo on Instagram and an opinion on Twitter is to reach the masses. Prizing is an important component when running a sweepstakes geared towards millennials. Make sure that the prizing is something that will resonate with them. If your prize is an experience trip, have your winner share their experience through social media by using the campaign hashtag. Get them excited by telling them the winner’s experience on their trip will be featured on your social media channels. This is a great way to spark the interest of millennials. Knowing their experiences will be shared with thousands to millions of people is reason enough to enter for them.

If you’re interested in marketing to millennials with a sweepstakes, reach out to us today for a quote.

 


31 dec

How do I maximize ROI when running an online sweepstakes?

By: Sync Marketing | In: Advertising, Ask Sync, Ask Sync Marketing, Best Practices, Contests, Facebook, Instagram, Legal and Prize Fulfillment, Sweepstakes, Twitter

To answer this question, I am going to first ask you to image that you have agreed to volunteer to bake a cake for your child’s school bake sale to raise money for their upcoming class trip. Your goal with this task is to make the most appealing product that will fetch the most money possible, doing so all within a set budget for purchasing your ingredients. Why this exercise, you may ask? Because this scenario is very similar to the process of trying to maximize ROI when running an online sweepstakes.  Below is the “recipe” for a successful sweepstakes campaign:

Identify your goals:  The goal of the bake sale is to raise as much money with as little financial investment as possible. It’s a challenge because you don’t want to invest too much money towards creating the cake, but the product must still be appealing to fetch a decent price.  Does that sound familiar?  You want to run an online sweepstakes to reward your consumers and get your name out to the masses, but you have a limited budget.  If money is an issue, you may want to consider running a simple social media initiative on Instagram or Twitter for example.  These types of promotions are a cost-effective way to engage your consumers all while promoting your company and/or product.  Here is an article on the benefits of running an Instagram sweepstakes: http://www.syncmarketing.net/benefits-runnings-instagram-promotion/#.VoR5y_9Iios

Know your Audience:  It’s a bake sale that will be attended by other parents at the school who will be most likely be buying the cake to serve to their family that evening. A rum raisin cake might be your baking specialty, but based on the audience, it most likely will be passed up.  The same goes for your online sweepstakes.  If your core consumers are not on social media, it would make much more sense to host the sweepstakes on an iFrame on your website, or on a dedicated sweepstakes microsite.  It may cost a bit more money, but the investment will pay off when you receive entries and email opt-ins. Identifying your audience and their habits is very important to maximizing your investment.

Quality of the Product:  So you signed up to participate in the bake sale knowing that baking is not your forte and now you are nervous.  Since you are not one to shirk responsibility, you whip up your best attempt at a chocolate cake, but it looks more like a hockey puck with frosting.  You certainly get an “A” for effort, but unfortunately, no one is buying your cake.  The same goes for a sweepstakes.  The overall quality of a sweepstakes consists of many ingredients, so to speak.  The design, value of the prizing, and overall user experience are very important to its success.  The icing on the cake is having clearly outlined official rules.  This is something a consumer really values because it’s the basic recipe to the promotion; it outlines the entry period, eligibility requirements, prize description and how they will be contacted if they win to, name a few. It also allows you to rest assured that you are running a legally compliant promotion.  Here is an article outlining the benefits of hiring an agency like Sync to handle your legal needs for running a sweepstake or contest:  http://www.syncmarketing.net/2014/07/#.VoVbSP9Iios

Product Display:  You made the most perfectly delicious cake and you are so excited to bring it to the bake sale to hopefully fetch a handsome price.  The problem is, you wrapped it in cellophane and it’s sitting on the back end of the table in the cold auditorium and it’s completely passed up.  Don’t make the mistake of letting your perfectly constructed sweepstakes go unnoticed by hiding it in the clutter of the online world. Even with a small budget, you can promote your sweepstakes or contest on social media channels, by writing a blog post, or by calling it out on your website’s home page.  You should also consider sending emails to your current subscribers.  The more traffic, the more entries and the higher return on your investment.    

For more information on building the perfect sweepstakes check out this article:  http://www.syncmarketing.net/steps-take-run-successful-sweepstakes-contest/#.VoVhF_9Iios

 


16 oct

Adding a Sweepstakes or Contest to your Marketing Plan

By: Sync Marketing | In: Advertising, Best Practices, Contests, Marketing, Sweepstakes, User Generated Content

This is about the time of year when companies start thinking about their marketing budgets for the upcoming year. They analyze the current year’s successes and misses, and start the conversation about what might work to their advantage in the next year. Does your upcoming marketing strategy include an online sweepstakes or contest? If not, we think it’s something you should consider. Below we list the benefits of adding a sweepstakes or contest to your marketing plan. It could be a win for your company.

Sweepstakes are a very cost effective marketing tool

Unlike traditional media, sweepstakes are a low cost way of getting your company’s name or products in front of the masses. By putting the word out on your company’s social media sites, it will engage conversation about your company and the free buzz will organically occur.  It’s also a great way to build your SEO. Here is a case study showing how Star Fine Foods increased their website visits by 288% from the previous year due to running an online sweepstakes.

Sweepstakes are a good medium to build your email database

Your online sweepstakes may just have been the catalyst that brought a new customer to your site. Once there, hopefully you have impressed them enough to want to keep in touch so to speak by signing up for future communications from your company. Here is an article that outlines sweepstakes best practices and ways to build your email database.

Sweepstakes offer insight into who is interested in your company

You are in control of the information you collect from entrants so if you’re looking to obtain demographics on your consumers, the sky can be the limit on what you can collect. One word of caution, however, is the more difficult you make the entry process, the higher chance you have of drop-offs. Make sure you are only requiring information that is important to you and perhaps make the other information optional for entry.

Sweepstakes and Contests can produce unforgettable UGC and PR

One instance that comes to mind is the annual Doritos contest. I can’t image watching the “big game” without the anticipation of seeing the winning commercial from the Doritos contest. This is an example of a fun promotion that has garnered a lot of free advertising through blogs and social media sites over the years. When companies ask their consumers to upload photos or videos, those companies have unique user generated content directly from their consumers that can benefit them in the future. Check out the 2016 contest here

Sweepstakes build a good relationship between the company and the consumer

The common thing that all sweepstakes share is that they give away a prize. Whether it’s thousands of instant win prizes, an unforgettable family trip, or a brand new car, rewarding your consumers with prizing will always leave them with a good feeling about you that will hopefully translate into future sales.

If you are sold and would like to consider adding a sweepstakes or contest to your marketing plans, be sure to consult the experts at Sync to get started. We will formulate a plan to make sure you have the most successful campaign and ROI.


17 jun

Sweepstakes and Contest Guidelines: Recent Changes That Could Affect Your Upcoming Sweepstakes or Contest

By: Jennifer French | In: Advertising, Best Practices, Contests, Facebook, Legal and Prize Fulfillment, Sweepstakes

When running an online sweepstakes or contest that includes a social media element or endorsement feature, it’s very important to follow the most up-to-date sweepstakes and contest guidelines to make sure your company or client is on the right side of promotion law. For example, recently Facebook made a significant change to their guidelines with respect to sweepstakes and contests, and the FTC has updated a host of FAQs outlining their stance on several topics related to endorsements and social media sweepstakes and contests. Below are a few highlights, but to read the entire FTC FAQ list, click here.

FTC Recommendation for Social Media Sweepstakes or Contests
The FTC recommends that companies running a sweepstakes or contest require all entrants to make it clear that their post on their social media account was an entry into a sweepstakes or contest. They recommend including either “sweepstakes” or “contest” in the overall promotion hashtag required for entry into the promotion. Also noted is that the FTC does not feel using the word “sweeps” is clear enough as they feel that many people will not understand its meaning.

No More Facebook “Likes” for Entries
A recent change in Facebook policy prohibits earning additional sweepstakes entries by sharing on personal timelines or by using friend connections (i.e. asking entrants to share on their timeline to enter for a chance to win, or by sharing on a friend’s timeline in order to earn additional entries, and tagging your friends in a post to enter are no longer allowed). Additionally, all promotions must be administered on pages or within apps on Facebook. Personal timelines and friend connections must not be used to administer promotions. For a full list of Facebooks promotions guidelines, click here.

It is very important to know all of the facts before you begin planning your upcoming sweepstakes or contests. Consider hiring a sweepstakes administrator like Sync Marketing for your next promotion. Our legal team is constantly staying up-to-date on all of the many changes in the field and we will make sure that you are always informed and running legally compliant promotions. Please contact us at 323.596.7962 or email info@syncmarketing.net.


23 jan

Wedding Sweepstakes Are the Key!

By: Jennifer French | In: Advertising, Contests, Marketing, Sweepstakes

It’s the beginning of wedding planning season due in part to a large number of couples that traditionally get engaged over the holidays, not to mention the Valentine’s Day proposals that will soon be on deck.  With their engagement haze still fresh, married couples-to-be are out in force seeking out a multitude of wedding-related services to help them plan their big day.  Retailers and vendors are showcasing everything from bridal registry services and wedding gowns to reception venues and of course, honeymoon destinations. A savvy marketer knows that one must go above and beyond to stand out in the crowd in the hopes of capturing these very enthusiastic and discerning consumers. Do you think running an online wedding sweepstakes or contest is a viable option for getting their attention?  These following marketers say “we do!”

Start Your Planning Engines:

Wedding Party App is running The Ultimate Wedding Starter Kit Sweepstakes.  Entrants will have the chance to win necessities for their big day including wedding stationary and a wedding gown.  This prize is valued at $2,400!

Location is Everything; Select Your Venue:

Are you dreaming of a wine country wedding? Then enter the Madrona Manor Dream Wedding Sweepstakes for your chance to win a dream wedding package valued at over $10,000, and that’s a lot of cannolis!

Oh, Great Another Blender; Definitely Register For Your Gifts:

Want to avoid receiving five blenders on your big day, than enter West Elm’s + Style Me Pretty’s Dream Registry Sweepstakes.  One lucky couple will walk away with a gift pack that includes a $2,000 West Elm shopping spree.

Ahhhh; The Honeymoon:

A very important part of saying “I Do” happens after the wedding.  The goal of a honeymoon is to relax, connect and soak in the happiness after all of the wedding craziness has come to a close.  DK is offering one happy couple just that in their Style Your Perfect Wedding Honeymoon Sweepstakes; a honeymoon trip of their choice, valued at $4,000.

If you are a brand that is considering running a wedding sweepstakes, then be sure that the prize is truly rewarding for these future brides and grooms to be. Perhaps a once in a lifetime honeymoon or a gift card so they can purchase the remaining items on their registry list. If you provide an unforgettable and/or useful prize, you will be sure to attract the perfect couples who will remain loyal to your brand or service. Contact Sync Marketing today at 323-596-7962 or inquiries@syncmarketing.net if you have any questions or want to run a wedding sweepstakes. 


01 apr

PaleyFest 2014 Featuring AMC’s Mad Men

By: Julie Link | In: Advertising, Television

Several members of the Sync Marketing team had the opportunity to attend the PaleyFest this year, and it did not disappoint. From the location at the world famous Dolby Theatre, a panel discussion featuring the cast of Mad Men, to the very dedicated fans who swarmed the stage before the moderator was even finished with his closing monologue; it was definitely a night to remember.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the PaleyFest, here’s a brief description directly from the Paley Center website:

The William S. Paley Television Festival, founded in 1984, is an extraordinary interactive pop culture event produced by The Paley Center for Media that connects fans with the casts and creators of their favorite series. Named for the founder of both the Paley Center and CBS, PaleyFest is two weeks of events where the audience sees episodes or highlights of the featured work followed by a panel discussion and Q&A with the cast and creative team.

If you have a favorite television series, and that series just so happens to be featured in the PaleyFest, this is the event for you. Not only were we sitting in one of the most beautiful theaters which is filled with so much culture, history, and now home to the most retweeted selfie of all time, but we were sitting there watching the season six finale of arguably one of the best shows in television history on the big screen. Once you’ve viewed your favorite show like that, it’s hard to go back to watching it on your couch, believe me!

After the episode ended, the moderator came back out and introduced the cast. From there began an hour-long question and answer session. It’s very similar to the Actor’s Studio, but instead of an audience filled with college students, you have an audience filled with martini sipping Mad Men fans. Sounds a lot better, doesn’t it?

Sunday, April 13th marks the 7th and final season premiere for Don Draper, Peggy Olsen and the characters of Mad Men, and you can be sure that the Sync Marketing team will be tuned in and ready to see how this exciting advertising show will end.