August 11, 2010
Giving a prize away on your blog can be a great way to spread the word about your work, thank loyal readers, or spotlight the artist that provided the giveaway item. For those of you thinking of hosting one of your own, here is my advice after recently hosting a 15-prize giveaway. Read on and learn from my mistakes!
1) Request e-mail addresses.
Have a sure way of contacting your winners. Unclaimed prizes are sad prizes!
2) Collect info efficiently.
I made a form through Google Docs and asked each winner to fill it out via e-mail. This puts their info into a password-secured spreadsheet that's much easier to read when it comes time to ship things out!
Of course, with only 1 or 2 winners, this kind of organization isn't necessary. (It should have been obvious, but I realized - as I sewed 15 handmade envelopes shut - that more winners equals more labor. Something to consider as you evaluate the time and resources available to you!)
3) Be prepared to ship internationally.
You may have more overseas fans than you think! Or, simply specify where you are willing to ship your goodies when you announce your giveaway.
4) When in doubt, check with the post office.
Unless you are absolutely sure, take your prizes to the post office to be weighed and priced out. Turned out that my sewn envelopes cost about 3 times what I first expected - still a small price to pay to ensure each prize got to its destination!
5) Be yourself.
You are representing your blog and yourself with what you send. Take this unique opportunity to jot a note, person-to-person, or reflect the style of your blog with the packaging you use. (Many thanks to my mom for providing the materials and inspiration for my giveaway packaging!)
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