Why competitions are an essential ingredient in your marketing mix

Why competitions are an essential ingredient in your marketing mix

Everybody loves free stuff, right? It’s what makes competitions so appealing. Whether they’re skills, sales or knowledge-based, competitions are a chance for consumers to have a bit of fun and get rewarded for it. As a brand, it’s a great opportunity to attract new audiences.

Competitions are a win-win marketing tool. They build instant engagement with potential customers and generate leads that can be placed into your customer nurturing programs. Backed by a social media or email marketing campaign, they also inspire excitement and deliver real business results.

How to build excitement and loyalty

Competitions encourage people to get involved with a brand they may never have heard of. They’ve even been shown to make audiences happier, and more motivated. For businesses, they’re a great tool for driving engagement, page visits and future sales. To build the best competition, it should be relevant to your target audience and encourage interaction and engagement. This could take the form of a ‘fan content’ campaign, where audiences share their creative concepts or creations. Or you could run a simple social media ‘comment’ giveaway, where you pick the most creative or funniest comments on your post. It could even be a quiz or questionnaire. Appealing to your audience’s interests, creativity and passion is the key to getting people to enter.

Having a worthwhile prize is the next important step. The prize should reflect your audience’s interests, skills and current consumer or industry trends. For B2B businesses, providing a discount on products or entry to industry conferences is a great way to open up your communication channels, while gathering essential data on your audience.

You need people to want to win, which means you have to create a sense of urgency and exclusivity. Prizes that are quirky and attention-grabbing work best – just look at Virgin’s bar-tending competition for a trip to Jamaica. It received a range of positive coverage across Cosmopolitan, Yahoo, Daily Mail and more, raising awareness and interest in the Virgin Holidays brand.

It’s important to note that consumers aren’t swayed by simple ‘door prizes’ anymore. They’re looking for something more personal and experiential, with research revealing that 72 per cent of millennials prefer to spend more money on experiences, rather than physical products. And for a B2B audience, gaining valuable new skills through a conference would be far more worthwhile than something simple like movie tickets. Your competitions should provide real value, showing your audience that you listen, you understand, and you’re switched on to their interests.

Creating new leads

Competitions go both ways, and they have benefits for your business as well as the audience. A social competition might include a call to action to join a mailing list, follow your business pages, or tag a friend. These actions will extend your reach online, making it more likely that people will see your content.

This is also an essential part of lead gen. Data is the currency of modern businesses, and while competitions are a fun way of communicating with and understanding your audience, they can also put you into direct contact with your audience via email or mailing addresses.

Having these touchpoints will let you nurture your sales prospects and encourage future purchases, creating a dialogue between you and your potential customers. Ultimately, this will increase your chance of generating leads and creating audience excitement for your brand and products.  

Monitoring engagement

With the right platform, setting up and managing competitions is easier than ever. You can now streamline the process with a single, clear view of your competition entries and interactions with customers. By analysing data generated from competition entries, you can also better understand your customers, refine your marketing approach and reach wider audiences.

TractionNext helps you run your competitions from one place. You can drive engagement with easy entry code generation, unique landing pages and direct customer follow up. Integration with your CRM makes guiding customers towards future interactions or sales easier than ever.

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