You might have noticed a new phenomenon taking place around the blogging world–the era of giveaways galore! I was bitten by the bug 2 years ago when I stumbled across some giveaways on some of the blogs I frequented. After perusing them and entering for a couple of months I decided to take the plunge and become a giveaway blogger myself and host them. As I ran a small scrap for hire business I also did a few giveaways with other blogs for my products. Being as I have been on all 3 sides of the spectrum-entrant, blogger, and company hosting, I feel I have a valuable insight into this new, crazy, oh-so-fun world! So here is my scoop on the giveaway craze and how it affects you as a work from home mom.
The Good: So what’s the big deal anyways? Why are giveaways such a hit and are they any good? If you’re in business you know just how very expensive it is to purchase advertising in any of the traditional forms. Giveaways are such a hit because they provide you a great deal of exposure for only the price of whatever you’re offering as a giveaway and possibly a review item for the blogger. This is also extremely effective advertisement because it plays off of the word of mouth aspect that we all rely on in our daily lives. I know if my mom or best friend tells me they love a product I will likely buy it and try it out for myself. Same goes for bloggers who have avid readers who trust them.
The Bad: In case you didn’t know this, not many sales translate immediately and directly from advertisement. It’s more about branding and getting your name and product into people’s minds. Especially if you have something that’s new and unqiue it will probably take several times of seeing it/hearing about it/reading about it before people will purchase. You need to look at giveaways as investing in advertisement and ways to build relationships, network, and build credibility, not in cheap ways to make big sales fast.
The Ugly: Unfortunately everything has an ugly side. There are many people who enter giveaways who would never dream of buying a product from you if they had to fork out money. I’ve heard of people who threw fits because they won a prize and then had to pay a few dollars to get it shipped to them. Ugliness is everywhere and you need to be aware that the giveaway world is no different. There are, however, also many entrants who are looking for new mom owned businesses to support and buy from, so don’t let the negativity turn you away!
My biggest advice is to go out there and carefully give it a try. Find a few bloggers that you know to be reputable and build a relationship with them. Don’t go broke giving away free items, but do take advantage of this new and inventive way to spread the word about you and your wonderful products!
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