Running a Contest – Monday Marketing

mondaymarketinglogoA while back, I talked about participating in a contest that another website was hosting.  Well, this week, I’m taking it a step farther!  I am actually running my own contest on  So, what steps did I have to take to run a contest?

  • Decide on what the prize would be for the winner.  In this case, it is a copy of the brand new, hot-off-the-presses book, “Once-A-Month Cooking: Family Favorites“.  A friend of mine is helping with the marketing and she knew that I would be a good person to promote the book, since the book has a 2-week gluten-free cooking cycle in it that would interest my readers on that particular website.  (Yes, I knew someone…but you could choose a product on your own and adapt this to work for you.)
  • In this case, my job was to review the book and post my review on my blog.  The prize for my readers is a copy of the book.  I will be posting reviews, interviews with the authors, photos, and various other goodies from the book (quotes, recipes, etc.).
  • Determine what your readers will have to do to enter your contest.  In my case, I am trying to build my email list, so that is the one requirement for entering.  However, visitors can earn extra entries by spreading the word via social networking.  I find that if you make the contest too difficult, people decide it’s not worth the hassle.
  • cookbookcoverLet people know that the contest is coming.  I posted a preliminary entry on my blog to build the buzz.  I tweeted it a few times and let my Facebook friends know about it.  Hopefully, the word will get around.
  • Today, when the contest opens, my first post will appear and visitors will see all the details on how they can enter, when the winner will be chosen, and see a photo of one of the recipes I made from the book.  In addition to my own photos, I will also be using graphics such as this one (right) and a photo of the authors later in the week.
  • I will be spreading the word through social networking throughout the week and hopefully, creating a buzz!

Please feel free to sign up, if you’d like to win a cookbook.  Only one of the 2-week cooking cycles is gluten-free; the rest are just plain great recipes!

Tell me your thoughts!  Have you ever run a contest on your blog?  Any helpful suggestions that you can add?  I’d love to hear them!  Sign up below, if you’re playing along with the Monday Marketing Meme!