3 Good Reasons Why QR Codes For Sweepstakes Entry Are a Bad Idea

Instead of making the process of entering a sweepstakes easier and faster, QR codes make the process of getting to the sweepstakes entry form cumbersome.

  1. Participants needs to understand what to do with the QR code. Does your target understand what the pixel black squares are  for?
  2. Participants needs a QR a code app to read the QR. Do they have a smartphone? Doe sit have a QR code reader app? Do they have to download a QR code reader app?
  3. It takes 3 additional steps to get to the sweepstakes entry from a QR code. 1. Launch QR app. 2. Scan QR code and 3. Go to the destination website.

You are better off just printing your sweepstakes entry page URL or simply asking participants to send a text message  to enter the mobile sweepstakes. Ex. Text BRAND to 65047 to enter.

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Pepsi Uses Text to Win (SMS) for Oscar Sweepstakes

The soft drink giant has been involved with mobile marketing since the very beginning. Pepsi knows well that their target audience is highly mobile engaged.

    “We’ve found that consumers are more willing to engage in a promotion via SMS than other methods of entry because it’s quick, convenient and now an   extremely commonplace form of communication,” said Gina Anderson, director of media relations at PepsiCo, Purchase, NY.

This mobile sweepstakes is well made because it fits the promotional moment well. This sweepstake runs with Regal Cinema during the pre-movie commercials. Moviegoers are instructed to send a text message with the code found on their Pepsi soft drink cup to a shortcode for a chance to win instantly.

The components that make this mobile sweepstake likely to succeed are:

  1. Right timing– During the pre-movie commercial run when moviegoers are awaiting the feature film.
  2. Target- Young demographic of moviegoers who are well aware and very comfortable with using text (SMS) messaging.
  3. Channel: The easiest and fasted way to enter a sweepstake is through texting in (text-to-win).
  4. Incentive: Participants will know right away if they have won one of instant win prizes or they remain entered to win the grand prize trip to the Oscars.

Good job Pepsi!

One Direction Instant Win Sweepstakes Via SMS Entry Is What Makes You Beautiful

Mondelez (Trident, Stride and Dentyne) is targeting the chewing-gum-loving teenagers who are also the largest text-(SMS)-messages-loving demographic. Using SMS text messages as the sweepstakes entry method is a no brainer. SMS also makes truly an “instant” win sweepstakes. You text in and you get an immediate response saying whether you won or not. See screenshots below.

All this is supported by a mobile optimize entry form and a desktop entry form. Mondelez does a good job at executing this sweep.

Crunch Pak Mobile Coupons Back-to-School Promotion

Mobiel Coupons -momares.com

  • Crunch Pak, an industry leader in fresh sliced apples, is offering a back-to-school promotion via its electronic billboard in New York City’s Time Square.
  • Consumers can “text the word APPLES to the number 65047” for a special offer. When consumers do so, they will be sent a link to a coupon for $1 off any size package of Crunch Pak sliced apples.
  • Tony Freytag, senior vice president of sales and marketing for the Cashmere, WA-based company, said in a press release. “We are excited to see the response and we’re fairly certain no other produce company will have this type of back-to-school promotion this fall.”
  • Crunch Pak is giving the digital coupon a unique number in order to track the redemption rate and measure how many people view and respond to messages on the billboard.
  • Marcos Menendez, chief executive officer of Momares, the company managing the electronic coupon for Crunch Pak, said mobile coupons perform very well in terms of redemption.
  • “Mobile sweepstakes, contests and coupons are the most effective way to build a database of mobile customers,” Menendez said in the press release. “Our mobile coupon campaigns average 10 percent redemption rates; text (SMS) coupon delivery rates are 95 percent.
  • Mobile coupon program customer retention rates are 98 percent, which means there is a very low unsubscribe, opt-out rate,” Menendez added in the press release. “Mobile coupons are stored in the customer’s mobile phone and are carried with the customer to the store. Coupon code can be offered for redemption or a barcode mobile coupon shown for scanning.”

The Anatomy of a Mobile Sweepstakes Campaign

Sweepstakes, contests and giveaways used to be reserved for Fortune 500 companies. That’s because companies needed large budgets to advertise the sweepstakes, hire a fulfillment house to deal with thousands of paper entries and organize participant entry information. It was a labor intensive process.

Those days are quickly passing. With a mobile phone in everyone’s hand, a participant can simply text to enter an SMS sweepstakes (Text KEYS to 65047 to enter now!) or complete a mobile entry form from the comfort of their smartphone (www.floridakeyswin.com). This makes the creation, management and prize giving of a sweepstakes far more cost-effective than ever before.

Sweepstakes (where random winners are drawn) and contests (where a skill is needed to win) are tried and proven marketing tactics that work. In the U.S., some early examples of its use date back to 1941 with the Parkway Margarine “Free Food” Contest. Today, sweepstakes and contests are everywhere, including ongoing programs, such as McDonald’s® Monopoly Instant Win Games, Coke ™ Rewards Sweepstakes and of course Publisher’s Clearing House. They work and work very well, offering many advantages to marketers.

The benefits of mobile sweepstakes and contest marketing:

  • Buzz: sweepstakes create tremendous word of mouth. The Florida Keys “Win a Florida Keys Vacation and Experience Key West BrewFest” sweepstakes (above) generated a huge reaction in social media and on blogs, sweepstakes sites and elsewhere. In the first 3 hours alone, it received more than 1,000 visitors and nearly 400 “likes” and 600 “shares” on the Florida Keys Facebook fan page.
  • Increase Your Email and Mobile Database: Sweepstakes and contests usually ask for name, email and address. Mobile sweepstakes take it a step further by gathering the mobile number as well. This increases the email and mobile marketing database tremendously and allows marketers to contact subscribers via text message and email after the sweepstakes is over.
  • High Return on Investment (ROI): The cost of setting up a mobile sweepstakes is far lower than the cost involved in traditional “paper entry” sweepstakes. The mobile entry component makes it very easy for the participant to enter. No forms to fill or staff needed to gather them. Mobile text-in entry increases the number of participants substantially. And the more participants you have, the lower the cost per entry. The ROI can be calculated by total entries or total qualified leads generated. ROI can be taken a step further by factoring in social media reach and new website visitors.

The Main Elements of a Mobile Sweepstakes

Goal: The objective of the sweepstakes needs to be clarified and kept top of mind in all activities. If it’s lead generation, the participants should be pre-qualified upon entry to facilitate the sales follow-up efforts. If it’s for branding, then promotion and related marketing and social networks should be leveraged as much as possible. If market research is a priority, then a survey can be included as part of the entry process. A marketer should plan beforehand what he will do with the data once it’s collected and how that data will turn into actionable analysis and a marketing asset.

Privacy: A lot of personally identifiable data is collected upon entry, especially when participants enter from their mobile phones. Marketers need to have and adhere to a solid privacy policy and a strong data management platform to protect the participant’s data. And always offer a way to opt-out and completely eliminate that participant’s personal information from the database.

Prize: Bigger isn’t always better. It’s crucial to pick the right prize– a prize that appeals to the target audience your product or service is trying to reach. Are you a college targeting high school students? A cruise trip for two to Alaska may not be the best option for high school students, but a new iPad mini will be.

Legal “Official Rules”: Because of their potential for abuse, sweepstakes are heavily regulated. In the U.S. all states have laws covering sweepstakes, sometimes resulting in exceptions, depending on where the entrant lives. Sweepstakes and contests are also regulated by U.S. Federal Trade Commission on a national level. Age requirements, date of birth, state of residency and the monetary value of the prize all affect how sweepstakes’ Official Rules are assembled. The Sweepstakes Official Rules should be reviewed by an attorney specializing in promotion marketing laws.

Mobile Partner: Whether you are an ad agency or a company, picking the right mobile sweepstakes partner is key. The mobile partner should be able to provide you with the services of executing and running a mobile sweepstakes. The mobile partner should also have the technical know-how to put together a text-to-win program and create mobile-optimized entry pages to capture participant’s information. A mobile sweepstakes partner should have the technology platform to provide a short code (text KEYS to 65047, for example), gather a database of mobile entries and provide reports as to the status of the program. They will also provide prize drawing, awarding and fulfillment services. A mobile sweepstakes partner will recommend Official Rules and promote your sweepstakes through their own channels. And when it’s all over, a mobile partner should provide post-sweepstake mobile engagement ideas to continue to drive the goals of the campaign and leverage the database of leads.

Fulfillment: A winner must be picked randomly and the prize awarded with the time limits that were set in the Official Rules. The winner must be contacted and a Declaration of Compliance, Liability and Publicity Release should be received before any prize is delivered. Based on the value of the winnings, a 1099 tax form needs to be sent to the winner as well. Fulfillment it’s a detailed and necessary process to avoid any future legal complications.

If you want to reach your mobile consumer, a mobile sweepstakes is absolutely the best way to do so. It allows the marketer to gather a detailed, permission-based profile of your mobile customer. Above all, it can create a fun, buzz-worthy event to energize current customers and reach new ones.

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