I’m starting a new series of posts called Q&A (the other is “How I work“). I get questions via email and online forums every day and I think many of you could benefit from them.
Question: Has anyone here had much success with contests and using them to promote your blog? I started one about a month ago and haven’t had a huge response. I’ve primarily been advertising to my Facebook friends. Don’t know if I’m making it too hard or if people just don’t trust contests–thinking there’s a catch?
Answer: Christine (not their real name), I’m not a big fan of contests and here’s why. I think it seems easy because you can drive traffic (sometimes) but then the traffic doesn’t stick. It’s sort of like having a 50% off sale at Christmas. It doesn’t make me a loyal customer, just a bargain shopper. I won’t come back unless you have another sale (contest). Contests aren’t a good way to make people stick. Now running a contest for CURRENT followers/readers is a great way to build trust and value. It’s just a lousy way to GET followers in my opinion.
The alternative way to build followers/find clients is to do it the old fashioned way by reaching out to people you can help, offering sound advice and creating content consistently (even if no one is listening). The reason I tell clients to write and create content (videos, products etc) is that someday people will be listening and you’ll have a library for them to come visit full of helpful information.
When I coach businesses on building followings I never encourage “promotions” to gain followers. Instead I tell them to provide consistent value and real human interaction. Those things create relationships that will last long term as well as attract the kind of people you want as clients/customers.