Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Win Bigger Lead Generation and Stronger Branding With Contests

Getting the word out. That’s what every business, big or small, needs to accomplish if they are going to achieve success in a competitive marketplace. Having access to social networking sites and email lists have changed the very nature of business. No longer are companies depending on print ads or traditional media outlets to get the word out about their products. However, just because a business has access to those networking and email tools doesn’t mean they are always being utilized properly.

A typical web surfer has a very limited attention span. That’s why they need to be hooked through added incentives to stay longer on a website and come back again. A fun contest can earn your business bigger lead generation and stronger branding possibilities. A contest also affords the opportunity to optimize your marketing dollars for the maximum return on investment. Consider these benefits for creating contests:

Contests Generate Buzz

Even a local business who offers a special prize package of goods or services can benefit from a contest. The very word “contest” invites customers to take a second look. “What can I win?” and “How do I play?” are the two primary concerns. If a business can provide engaging and simple answers to those questions the chances increase for a wide participation among potential customers. Bottom line: everybody loves to win. Why not tap into that fun for your own business?

Stronger Branding Potential

If you embrace the “getting the word out” philosophy of attracting new customers then a contest can serve that purpose on many levels. You don’t even have to offer a prize that is associated with your business. For instance, a dry cleaner could offer a free iPod in a customer raffle. If that brings in new customers and generates new business then the prize is secondary. You could also offer an essay contest asking why your product makes a difference in someone’s life. This is a perfect way to build up traffic to your site and create a valuable log of positive testimonials and reviews. All of that is going to improve the brand.

Building Big Lead Generation

Sharing an email address is as commonplace as handing out business cards. With a contest you have the potential to gather a huge influx of email and other data that will be in your control. Think of it this way: every person who enters your contest with an email address is a potential new customer that you can later target with advertising. A growing lead list is gold!

Before diving into a contest for your business you should check out all social media rules and regulations as well as any federal or provincial laws regarding these types of activities. As long as you’re working within those guidelines there is no reason why your contest can’t be an ongoing event. Consider the millions of lottery players who happily fill out their tickets every week for a chance at the big prize. Yes, everybody loves to win. Now your business can cash in on that attitude with its own lead generating and brand building marketing tool.