Contesting is like a ladder; meaning the more rungs you climb – the higher your chances of success. Once you have climbed the ladder you will have completed the key to successful contesting. Many of us look at contesting as a one dimensional tool where we click on the entry, submit our name and hope for the best. However, there is so much more to this than simply clicking the form and entering. The following article will focus on the keys to success in terms of contesting.
Successful contesting is much more than a one dimensional aspect. In fact, we can compare contesting to that of the Rubik’s Cube which has multiple colors and faces. It seems that we can always complete one color, but the other color completions elude us, and that my friends is where contesting requires climbing the ladder and using the keys to success.
As we stated, contesting is like a ladder that has many steps. We will go through the steps in order so that you, too, may become a better contester using the proper keys to success.
#1 Email Addresses
Begin by creating an email that is separate from your personal email. You will find that while contesting you will be swamped with spam emails on a daily basis. Separating your work and personal emails from contest emails will ensure that your inbox does not become flooded with inappropriate and time consuming emails; just imagine coming home after 3 or 4 days away from the computer to find 600 emails which you will then need to sort to pick your personal and work emails from.
#2 Join a Contesting forum
While we all strive to know and enter every great contest, it is impossible to keep up with all of them. As a new contester it is important to be able to find the contests for you to enter. Joining a great resource like http://www.about.com and looking for the contest forum is one great way to keep up-to-date on entering contests.
#3 Make contesting friends
Every contester needs friends. In order to become successful at sharing contests and earning referral points, you will soon learn that sharing is very important while contesting. Having a group of friends who also share the same interests ensures that your newsfeed is consistently full of contests you will want to enter. Also be sure to make friends in your geographic region so that you can enter those contests which may be geographically restricted. For example, if you are an American who fills your contest friends with Canadians, this will probably isolate you from entering contests specifically suited to Americans or those which are not open to Canadians. The same can be said for those in any country; not just Canada.
#4 Share and Share again
A lot of contests have a share option for Facebook. This option allows others who enter contests to re-share or enter under your link which gives you valuable ticket entries. The more entries you have the better suited you are at winning a prize.
#5 Enter everything!!
Contesting is like a part-time job. The more you sit down to enter – the more successful you will become at randomly being drawn to become a winner. The name of the game is numbers, and although you may win an odd contest with one single entry, you will find that entering the same contest daily will multiply your chances and give you better odds of winning. Now it says enter everything, but this isn’t exactly true. If you really don’t need it, don’t enter it for the sake of entering. A successful contester will enter about 100 to 300 contests daily and keeps track of each contest and the end dates on a spreadsheet. On the other hand, the average contester more realistically enters 20 to 100 contests per day, and those people who someday hope to win are in the 1 to 20 per day.
#6 Read the Rules
Every contest has rules and you should read them. It would really bite to be chosen as a winner only to be forced to forfeit the prize because you failed to see it was only open to the U.S. or it was only open to Ontario residents. Each contest will have in the rules the participants who are eligible to participate. It will also state who is eligible to vote for you or how many times each person can vote.
#7 Join Voting Groups
At times you may enter into a voting contest. It may be a contest that requires you to get “likes” or “votes”. While it is not unethical to join these groups, reading the rules beforehand will ascertain whether or not you can use these groups to trade votes for votes. A good voting group will generate 30+ votes per day for you and this may be the key to keeping you in the top positions. Again, read the rules before using these voting groups or asking for votes as it is simply embarrassing for someone to post that you have been cheating. If you read the rules and it doesn’t state anything about using this type of vote gathering, then by all means go ahead and get votes. Just remember in these types of groups you have to vote for everyone else and then post your link on the wall for them to vote yours. A lot of times those who are not in the contesting world will think this is unfair, but if you read the rules and it doesn’t state you cannot use them, then there is nothing the sponsor can do except change their rules for the next contest.
#8 Don’t Be Greedy
While we all like to win, there is a point when we must face the reality that others need a chance to win also. It is one thing to want to win all the time, but alienating yourself from your friends to enter every contest to steal the prize is much like saying you don’t care about your friends. If you see your friend enters into a voting contest that you know you can win, it is in good taste to go ahead and let them have a chance. Let’s say you do win – what would the cost of your winning be? Having your friends think you’re greedy is just as bad as being labeled a fake account. People will simply avoid you and “forget” to vote, they will then lie that they voted or quite simply they may un-friend you. In the case of a random contest, it is impossible to distinguish yourself from being picked so winning three or four random contests in a week is not something your friends would take the wrong way.
#9 Enjoy your time with your contesting friends
Contesters are people too. Just remember that as you sit on one end of the computer, the world has become a much smaller place with the internet being global. In other words, communication is instantaneous and the others who sit on the other end are real people who have lives and personal stories, sometimes painful stories that can be physical, mental or emotional. These people have feelings and human nature leads us to talking and chatting with our friends. Have a chat with your fellow contesters and actually get to know them. If you live close enough you could go and meet them. You never know, someday that could be your best friend.
#10 Use your Newsfeed
Your Newsfeed acts as a valuable resource. It’s one of those things that many people ignore since it probably brings on an information overload. However using your newsfeed and scanning for contests through it will provide valuable information and many contests you can enter.
#11 Set Your Google Notification on
Google also has a handy little feature which you can set to notify you. You can, for example, set it to weed out keywords such as your name or keywords like “contests”. About every half an hour Google updates this information and if you are connected to it – then you will rarely miss out on good news or good contests.
#12 Connect your Iphone/Phone/Blackberry/Smartphone
Use your phone to stay connected to your social media. Staying connected to your email, Facebook, and Twitter means you will never miss out on messages or statuses. For example, if you win a contest and others see it before you, more often than not they will tag you in a post and you will be notified via your mobile device.
Following these steps won’t ensure that you win every contest, but using them will, at the minimum, ensure you have the Keys to Success to win more often when it comes to contesting. Thanks for reading.
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No Purchase Methods of Entry – What Are They, and How do You Use Them?
5 Ways to Get Disqualified from Sweepstakes