Never had a reason to say that until now . . . and now that I have, that’s [thankfully] behind me, so let’s move on to the last of the running-a-contest posts.
Having decided to run a contest, we’ve determined the:
- rationale (our goal)
- frequency, and
Whether running a random-winner or most-votes-collected contest, we need to decide how to select the winner(s). If you’re running a sweepstakes, where money or a prize is awarded to the contestee, you’ll want to ensure the contest is fair. Give thought to using a random-selection tool site like Rafflecopter, Wishpond, Random Picker or Random.org, to name a few. (They’re relatively easy to utilize, which I love.)
Basically, you collect entries on your contest entry page and when the contest has ended, click the “Select Winner Randomly” or “Generate Winner” button (or whatever the case may be, given the tool). Hurrah, one contestee is quickly selected—at random.
If you’re going with a vote-type contest, you’ll be happy to know that most contest apps have built-in voting buttons and counters, which automates the retrieval of entries with the most votes.
I understand there are two great free tools for running Facebook contests, so if FB is your happy place, have at it (we like things that are simple and straightforward).
Edgerank Checker offers a tool that exports “Likes & Comments” from Facebook contest posts. The site and product is called “Contest Capture” and is reputed to be “simple to use”. Woodbox’s app is comparable to “Contest Capture”, but takes it one step farther—you have three options for choosing your winner.
Here are some quick but important points:
Ensure you craft an upbeat [awesome] “congratulations, you won!” email announcement. Avoid the cookie-cutter approach and make it personal, especially if you have more than one winner. And do check with him/her/them to see if it’s okay to publicize names (if this is your intention).
Make certain your winner has a good five to seven days to respond to the great news. If there’s no response, select a new winner . . . and make sure you inform the original winner of this.
One thing you always want to include, regardless of which winner-selection tool or method you choose: a “Right to Disqualify” caveat. This is vital, in the event you need to disqualify an inappropriate or fraudulent entry.
I’m going to give some [serious] thought to my own upcoming contest and draft a plan. Good luck to me . . . and you . . . and here’s to garnering some winning results.