As a marketer, you probably realize that sweepstakes and giveaways are a very valuable tool for building email newsletter lists but are you making the most of the email subscribe process? Subscribing users to a list is extremely simple when utilizing one of the email service provider integrations offered by PromoSimple, taking only seconds to setup.

This feature enables you to instantly add users to specific lists so that you can begin contacting them and educating them about your product or service. However, just adding a new user to an existing list may be skipping some of the initial education process that is valuable in creating a long-term relationship with the user.

1. Create email lists for sweepstakes entrants

When you are running a sweepstakes you can always create a separate list for the users that will be added to your account. You may be sending the same content to these users in the future that you send to your regular list, but by separating them you can track and analyze the quality of the new subscribers on their own. It may turn out that the new subscribers are active and engaged because the content is new and exciting for them. If you see that the new sweepstakes generated list is performing well you can merge it into your standard list.

It may also turn out that the quality is less than what you see from your organic subscribers who opt to receive your communications through other channels. In this instance you may want to keep the lists separate and/or tweak the content sent to these users to further engage them.

2. Customize your confirmation emails

In order to maintain a list’s integrity and quality, particularly when looking at bounce rates or SPAM complaints, utilizing a double-confirm subscription process is highly recommended by most of the top email service providers; some even require it. This confirmation email sent to a user when they are first added to a list asks them to click on a link to confirm that they want to be subscribed.

This is also your first point of contact with the user in regards to mailing to them from your email list. Don’t waste this opportunity by sending a standard template with default opt-in text. This is the time when you can let them know why they want to opt-in, what they will receive in the future by opting-in and, ideally, offer them some type of incentive to confirm or let them know about the benefits of being a part of your community.
If you have a separate list for sweepstakes entrants (or for each sweepstakes) you can also further customize the content of this initial message to thank them for entering the promotion. By customizing the content of this message you are able to immediately follow up on the actions that the entrant has just taken and use this opportunity to let them know about other areas of your business.

3. Setup auto-responders

Most email service providers offer the option to send triggered auto-responders to the members of an email list. For your new subscribers, gathered from your sweepstakes, this is a great opportunity to educate them about the various aspects of your product or service. You can choose to have a single auto-responder sent a few days after they’ve entered or even set up a series of emails that will help them better understand what it is that your business does and why they should be excited about receiving your emails in the future.

4. Ending your promotion

If you choose to have a separate list for a specific promotion, the users for your sweepstakes are all in one easy-to-contact group. When your promotion has ended you can send them all a message to let them know that a winner was selected. Many of our partners also ask the winner for quotes or photos that they can include in this email to the entrants. This adds legitimacy to your promotions by showing that a real, live person has received their prize.

In the email below, LDProducts has done a superb job of portraying the winners of their previous sweepstakes and letting their entrants know that prize was awarded. Although the recipient may not have been the winner of the promotion, they are still left with a good feeling about the promotion. They have also utilized this email to notify past entrants that there is a new sweepstakes that is live and that they can enter.

5. Notifying users about future sweepstakes

Now that you have a list of past entrants for your sweepstakes, you know for sure that they are interested in entering to win a promotion that you’re holding. You can utilize this list for letting them know about new sweepstakes as they launch. In this way you can re-engage past entrants; by including entry methods such as ‘Tweeting’ or ‘Refer a Friend‘ these past participants can also help you to promote the new sweepstakes.