Giveaways are a proven tool used by e-commerce businesses to grow brand awareness and get attention. It typically involves giving away a product or an experience in exchange for an email or social sharing.
There are lots of ways you can use giveaway competitions to grow your store and one of them is by combining them with coupons.
If you’re running a giveaway now and you haven’t created a specific coupon for your entrants, then you are leaving a lot of opportunity on the table.
Coupons and giveaways go hand in hand. In this article, I’m going to show you how to use a coupon with your giveaway and the best practices for integrating a coupon strategy with your giveaway strategy.
Offer A Discount After Entry
Offering a discount coupon code can spur people into action after they’ve just entered your competition.
Not everyone will want to wait and see if they’ve won to get their hands on your product. Some people just want it now, now, now!
To get maximum bang for your marketing dollar you should only expose the coupon code after they have entered the competition.
This could be on the thank you for entering the page or via an email thank you (ideally both!)
You also want to make it risk-free for them to purchase while the competition is still running.
I suggest telling entrants you’ll give them an exclusive discount on your product after they enter and that if they buy now and end up winning, that you’ll refund 100% of their purchase.
Removing this question of “what if I win?” might be just the thing they need to pull the trigger and purchase now as opposed to after the giveaway ends.
Coupon End Date
The other important factor here is that you be very clear about when the coupon finishes.
You technically can have it last until beyond the competition, but to spur people on, I suggest that you make the coupon end date the same as your giveaway competition end date.
Making the coupon finish the same day as the competition means that people are entering to get the coupon and actually using it too. You don’t want them just entering and forgetting about the coupon because they think they still have a month to use it.
Offer A Bigger Discount On Sharing
What if your potential customer is super helpful and ends up sharing your giveaway competition?
Surely that kind of thing should be rewarded… right?
As an added bonus, I suggest you also reward people who share your competition with an extra discount or even a free item they can’t get otherwise.
The trick with running a viral giveaway is to incentivize the sharing as much as possible. The more you can incentivize sharing, the further your competition will spread and the bigger the impact it will have on your business.
Post-Entry Email Sequence
The final thing I’d like to touch on is to ensure you have set up your post-entry email sequence properly. Making contact with people after entry is super important and you want to remind them multiple times, without being too much of a pest obviously, but enough that you’ll be in their mind and they’ll be 100% aware they only have a limited time to use your coupon.
Ideally, you want to include reminders to everything you need them to do.
Adjust the following for your comfort level and your audience, but a follow-up email sequence after entry could go something like this:
- Immediate – Thanks for entering, here’s your coupon! (Coupon Reminder #1)
- Day 1 – Earn extra entries & a bigger discount (Sharing Reminder #1)
- Day 3 – Why wait? If you win, we’ll refund your purchase (Coupon Reminder #2)
- 3 Days Before Finish – Have you shared the competition to get extra entries? (Sharing Reminder #2)
- 1 Day Before Finish – The competition & the coupon ends in 24 hrs! (Coupon Reminder #3)
- 4-6 Hrs Before Finish – Last Chance! (Coupon Reminder #4)
But what if you get emails after the finish from people who missed out?
With a giveaway of any substantial size, this is almost inevitable.
There’s always one or two people who complain that they didn’t get a chance to use it. “Ohhh my grandmother’s dog died and I couldn’t get to a computer…” or “I was on sabbatical and away from internet access for 2 weeks, but I really want this!”.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you how you handle these people. I tend to lean on the nice side and either create a custom coupon code just for them or open up the discount code for another 24 hours a few days after the competition/giveaway ends just to capture those last few people.
I hope this guide has provided you with a few ideas and you now have a good idea about how to integrate a coupon strategy into your giveaways strategy.
Try it out on your next giveaway and see how it goes with your audience!