Customized Contests & Sweepstakes
North American Brands and Agencies are often looking for something special, something out of the box. RAVEN5 is a supplier of large scale, national and international programs that we build to order.
Our team will outline the program, provide the architecture, wireframes and user flows to ensure that our customers get exactly what they want when they want it.
Naturally, these programs take a touch more time and cost a touch more money; I’m sure you expected that. We use only the freshest cuts of code and enhance it with the spiciest of design to ensure our programs are as unique as your customers.
Why create a custom contest or sweepstakes?
There are many reasons to run a custom contest, they enable you to engage your existing audience while enticing newcomers and in turn providing a rich source of data. A contest empowers consumers to do your marketing for you while you gather email addresses and specific data regarding your product or services. They engage and develop social channels while providing your prospects and clients with favourable brand impressions and awareness.
Other brands go custom because let’s face it, their brand is unique and no templates or platforms out there fit the bill. They need it to be fully customized, it needs to look just like their website or match a specific campaign. Provide us with the creative and we’ll develop it so that it looks as intended, otherwise leave it up to us and we’ll fully design and develop your custom contest.
Maybe your brand requires a “closed contest”, one that’s only open to a specific set of people. Do you need users to meet specific requirements so that they can enter? Will you only advertise on specific channels, maybe even skipping social media? No matter your need, we can help.
The number one reason for going with a custom contest is because of the features. We have many “modular” features that can be included in any build (i.e. pin code rewards, instant win, account management, etc.) and scaled to look or perform a certain way. But we’ve found that sometimes the best ideas come from you, the client. Allow us to build it the way you want it to work by providing us what you had in mind, and we’ll make it work.
If your idea includes a Customized Contest or Sweepstakes Platform or program we can help. Some elements we have cooked up are listed below:
- Data imports – need to correlate sales purchases to users and award entries based on dollars spent? That’s pretty specific, but it’s not a problem.
- Instant win – custom process, randomization, validation, display and tracking of instant win prizes.
- Pin code creation – we can create hundreds of thousands of unique pin codes based on specific lengths and data formats.
- Pin code entry – algorithms for tracking provider data can be created based on prefix or sufix. Used in correlation with instant win contests.
- Print collateral – design and print custom pieces in bulk such as package and product stickers, shelf talkers, booklets, supplier kits, etc.
- Prize claim automation – many prizes? The process can be automated by providing the user a claim form online that logs and emails all necessary parties (prize winner, client, prize supplier, etc.).
- Reporting – custom tailored reports can be created and run as often as required with specific data gathered from the contest site.
- Surveys – smart surveys can be created based on specific questions and can adjust based on answers.
- User registration – customized registration can include user and password creation so that the information is saved for returning users.
- User tracking – tracking the actions of users within the custom site, including taking surveys, submitting pins, watching videos, etc.
Example Site Flow
This is the ultimate in customization, any of the steps can be subbed in and out and if they don’t exist yet, they can be created based on your ideas and requirements. The following is an example.
Typical drivers are email and social media but can be driven through typical ad channels.
Account Login / Registration
An account management system and dashboard can be included to allow user registration with a login/password.
Standard inputs are name, email, year of birth, gender and postal/zip code. A checkbox for agreement with the rules and privacy is also included.
Include a one time survey or multiple ongoing surveys. Can also include custom text inputs, multiple choice and dynamic questions.
Our social sharing technology allows the contest to be easily shared via one click to any social media networks or via email address.
An email auto-responder will deploy upon sign up and can include any additional information and links as required. It can also be deployed when utilizing a pin code process.
Pin Code / Instant Win Notification
A pin code and instant win process can be included utilizing custom made pin codes either supplied or created to specific sizes and combinations.
Pin Code / Redemption
Upon notification of the eligibility of an instant win the user can complete an online form and submit in a single step to have their winnings processed.
The thank you or exit page can drive traffic to a website, landing page or social media. If any coupons are chosen, there will be an option to print.
Ready to go?
Once you’ve made the decision to run a custom contest and ironed out the budget with us, there are just a few steps to follow to get the ball rolling. Let’s review planning, designing, executing and wrapping up of a customized contest marketing program.
First things first, start by determining who you are trying to attract. Who is your target market? This will assist with the next steps.
- Target – Who are you building the campaign to attract? It should be targeted to actual prospects that you intend to sell your product or service to in the end. (i.e. Females interested in sewing machines, 35-45, 60K HHI, North America excluding Quebec.)
- Prizing – What incentive will you give your target in exchange for their personal information? Keep in mind that the more specific to your brand, the more relevant the responses will be. (I.e. If you own a sewing machine business and give away a generic prize like an iPad, you’ll get many opt-ins that are off target versus a more relevant prize like an actual sewing machine.) Another thing to note is that multiple prizes that have weekly or monthly drawings will add fuel to the fire and will drive ongoing engagement.
Will your contest run within your state/province? Is it national or international? This will depend on your target and will impact legal and rules.
- Legal – Legal review will ensure your rules are written correctly and you’re covered. Certain states also require applications and bonds to be filed. As well, you’ll need to complete final reports post-campaign for the IRS and/or local states depending on your campaign.
- Rules – You need clear, concise rules that state everything about your contest, including start and end dates, drawing dates and actual prizing spelled out with dollar amounts. You also need to include information about how you intend to draw the prize winners and how you will handle prizes that go unclaimed.
- Language – Depending on your target you might want to consider localization for Spanish or French. You’ll need a translator to review and provide language for all elements of your campaign as well as a review of rules.
The creative needs to reflect the brand to ensure your fans know who’s running the contest. At the same time offer something fresh and enticing to engage both existing customers and prospects. Cleverly show the prizing and use as much live text to discuss the fine details.
- User Experience – Your contest needs to function seamlessly on tablets and mobile phones in addition to desktops. Pre-populating entry forms can speed up the process for entrants and produce more entries. Use callouts, arrows, colors or simple instructions to ensure the user can easily figure out what to do next. After entering your contest, an excited entrant should be able to share with friends, so make sure they can. Remember to keep the rules and privacy policies easily accessible.
- Opt-In – Ensure you have the correct wording and details about what a user is providing as well as receiving in return. It’s important for future communications that the wording is clear to avoid unnecessary issues with CASL (Canada) and CAN-SPAM (USA).
Ensure you have a server or multiple servers that can keep up with the demand of your contest. Depending on how wide the breadth of your contest, you might consider running multiple servers to handle the traffic. Your database should be secure from anyone looking to try to mass enter the contest via bots and scripts in addition to keeping hackers away from private information (i.e. user opt-ins, credit card information). It is highly recommended and wise to utilize an SSL certificate for any contest that handles private information like credit card numbers and transactions.
- Development – Testing on multiple platforms is a must, not just different web browsers, test on different devices from tablets to mobile phones and even touch screen computers (where a user may opt to use both touch and mouse/keyboard combinations). Determine if your contest is easily accessible for those with disabilities.
- Monitoring – In case something goes wrong with the platform, server or website, there should be an uptime monitor running in the background as well as a contact person who can quickly make adjustments or fixes as necessary.
It is important to hire or have a legal team available that is familiar with running contests. Specific provinces and states require multiple documents to be filed before and after the contest. Insurance may also be required, as well as bonds, depending on the value of the prize(s).
- Prize management – Awarding prizes needs to be done with care, from facilitating random drawings and reaching out to eligible winners with the correct forms. In some cases, potential winners need to be re-drawn and contacted multiple times as there may be no response from the initial drawing. Keep in mind that in both Canada and the US, specific forms may need to be filled out post campaign reporting the winners and including the prize values for taxation purposes.
- Reporting – Final reports from drivers such as email and social media as well as the contest platform and Google Analytics are necessary to evaluate the effectiveness of a contest marketing campaign. At a glance, review web traffic from Google Analytics, engagements via social, opens and clicks from email and new vs. existing opt-ins, submissions and shares via your contest platform.
Our approach to working with you
As a customized contests & sweepstakes provider we have experience working with brands and agencies of all sizes. The following are typical steps taken after initial discussions and proposals are approved:
- After requirements and direction are received, comprehensive layouts of the required collateral are produced to establish campaign flavour.
- Once layouts are approved, a user flow or schedule is produced that includes comps of the individual posts, designs, layouts, contest steps, etc. including copy.
- Upon approval, development and thorough testing of emails or website or contest begins.
- After final approval, the program is scheduled and everything is made active.
- Upon completion, a campaign report is provided, including winner(s) and notification for contests.
*Note: Legal review, Régie filings (Quebec), Rules writing and Fulfillment are available options when running a contest.
RAVEN5 is the leader in customized contests and sweepstakes, we are “The World’s First Contest Marketing Agency” & “The World’s First Sweepstakes Marketing Agency” according to Google, Bing and Yahoo. Our experience with contests, sweepstakes, promotions, email marketing, social media marketing, Google Adwords as well as customized landing page and website design have helped make RAVEN5 the leader in digital and online contests and sweepstakes.
If you have an idea, we can assist you with the concept, design, development, testing. We can also assist with the marketing tactics that ensure that your Contest or Sweepstakes is everything you envision. Call us now for a discussion about next steps and an estimate, we’ll see what we can cook up for you.