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Make Sure You’re Clued Up When It Comes to Running Competitions – Entrepreneur Magazine, July 2015

It always amazes me how marketers come to certain conclusions. The one is to create a campaign and then just assume that it will go viral online. The other is the trap that many marketers fall into: thinking that if they have a small budget, then running a competition is an easy way to create awareness.

This is, to some extent, true. You can create a huge amount of traction with a competition, but you can also waste a lot of marketing effort if it is not done correctly.

Something that is often overlooked in this instance, is looking at all of the factors of running a competition and identifying the red flags that the show why a competition might not work, or spotting the golden gems that’ll have your competition soar. As a result, I came to a simple formula to help explain exactly what is needed to make a competition work.

Entries/Engagement = Probability of Winning x Prize Size x Ease of Entry

Probability of Winning

Simply put, this is the chance of winning a prize. The smaller the number of participants likely to enter, the more appealing the competition will be to potential entrants.

Prize Size

The larger the prize, the more entries. That said, this factor is also dependent on your target market – higher LSMs compared to lower LSMs.

Ease of Entry

The easier it is to enter the draw, the more entries you will have. Digital entries are normally the easiest, but sometimes the advertisers can make it complicated.

It really is quite simple, but you would be surprised as to how many marketers get this wrong. The effectiveness of the competition comes down to the mixture of these three factors.

To explain this in more detail, let me use an example. If you have a one in eight million chance to win an iPad and the entry was free, would you enter the competition? Most likely not. That said, if you have the same chance of winning the competition but the prize is R10 million, you would more likely want to enter.

If on the other hand, to enter the competition you would have to start paying an entry fee, then as the price of the entry increases, so interest in the competition would decrease.

Another mistake many marketers make has to do with the ease of entry. There might not be a monetary price for entry, but they do make it very difficult for people to enter the competition.

This is normally very unnecessary and results in the competition gaining few entries (or far less than it could). Making the process of entry easy for users is imperative as it’s a quick and easy win.

Although this formula might seem simple to some, it highlights the key elements in an effective marketing competition.

Ruan Oosthuizen – CEO of Flume

The original article can be found here.

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