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It’s hard to wade too far into the marketing waters without hearing about giveaways, and how they can drastically increase your social media following and awareness for your brand. For FBA sellers with branded products, giveaways are a worthwhile investment that can help build up your fan base.
Giveaways are simple contests in which users take action (follow you on Twitter or watch a YouTube video) in the hopes of winning a prize.
The basics: how Amazon Giveaways for FBA sellers work
You can promote any of your FBA product offerings. In the promotions tab of your Amazon Seller Central, simply select giveaway, the product you want to choose (keep in mind that you will pay for shipping to the winner and your typical FBA fees), and configure the settings.
The main things you have to decide are how the winners will be chosen and what users must do to enter.
There are three ways to select winners:
- Random Instant Win
- Lucky Number Instant Win
- First-come, First-served
In any scenario, Amazon values immediate notification to the entrant, who won’t have to wait around for the news. Instead, they’ll be greeted with an instant win or a message that they did not win.
Which option you choose will largely depend on the value and quantity of what you are giving away.
The next thing to decide upon is the required action.
Unfortunately–for whatever reason–Amazon is unable to include requirements from any other network except for Twitter and YouTube. Since Facebook and Instagram are much more product-focused networks, that can be bad news for many FBA sellers with branded products.
However, if you think strategically about your Amazon Giveaway, there are still great results that can come from the required actions. We’ll cover a range of factors to consider that will help you narrow down your choice.
Create clear, attainable goals for the Amazon Giveaway (hint: not reviews)
The biggest mistake FBA sellers make when looking into Amazon Giveaways is assuming that the contest will somehow drive reviews or sales. These contests are designed for exposure and likely won’t increase the number of reviews or conversions on the product (but we’ll cover ways to up your odds later).
Instead, your goal might be to gather information from consumers, to promote a video that showcases not just the product being given away but the entire product line, or to drive traffic to your Twitter account for a larger purpose.
Do you have a promotion for a new product that is designed to drive sales? Maybe a big discount on a three-product package that comes with an instructional ebook? How can an Amazon Giveaway help get that package deal in front of the right consumers?
Asking initial questions like these will increase your likelihood of success with Amazon Giveaways, which are simply not designed to lead to sales in themselves.
Choose the right product in your funnel
Let’s say your brand has a pretty good fan base with a product that costs around $15, but another product by that brand (one that targets the same audience) selling for $68 on Amazon just doesn’t get the amount of traction that you hope for.
Getting some exposure to a related upsale is a really smart idea if you already have a following based around a cheaper product.
Conversely, if your brand is relatively new and you’re just beginning to build up your community, then you’ll likely want to choose the most affordable product that you offer and to give it away to as many people as you can. This way, 50 people could receive a prize instead of 5. They’d be exposed to your brand and might be curious about what else you offer.
Catching the right people with the right offering in your product funnel is always a factor in the long term success of any marketing campaign.
Have a short term plan for directing the temporary influx in traffic
Here’s an example of what not to do: require that entrants follow you on Twitter but then leave your Twitter account silent for days or weeks after the contest.
Instead, you’ll want to have an even greater presence on Twitter than you usually do.
But it’s not all about presence. It’s really about traffic.
To help get your marketing juices flowing, here are some ideas:
- After requiring entrants to follow you on Twitter, post a link with an awesome discount every day for a week
- When requiring entrants to watch a YouTube video, be sure to include a verbal CTA in the video that prompts viewers to subscribe or share
- At the end of an Amazon “video short” entry requirement, include a verbal CTA that lets viewers know they can follow you on Facebook for monthly coupon codes on the products
In some way, you must direct your entrants to further engage with your brand.
Find a way to grow your email list
Since email marketing is the highest converting channel, it makes sense that you’d want to come up with a way to grow your tribe via an Amazon Giveaway.
One savvy blogger managed to capture email addresses by requiring that users opt-in a via Rafflecopter contest to even get access to the Amazon Giveaway. Of course, if you’re going to do a two-step contest, you’ll want to make sure that the Rafflecopter (or other provider) contest is enticing enough in itself OR that the Amazon Giveaway odds are high enough to warrant asking people to jump through two hoops.
You can also run additional contests via Twitter after your first Amazon Giveaway. Let’s say that you require that users follow you on Twitter to enter. You can follow up with ways to grow your list on social media.
One way is to offer a downloadable guide. If you promote a cooking utensil with your giveaway, you can then offer a free PDF ebook with related recipes. Of course, to download the ebook, followers will need to enter their email on your website.
A Rafflecopter contest that requires an email address opt-in could be promoted via Twitter after you’ve got a newly enlarged following from an Amazon Giveaway.
Keep in mind that Amazon will never make it easy for you as a brand to capture email addresses, so you’ll have to come up with ways yourself and bake them into your overall giveaway strategy.
Share wisely: promote your Amazon Giveaway to the right audience
Here comes the tricky part. How do you get your Amazon Giveaway in the hands of the right people? The people who will care about your product, possibly tell their friends about it, or maybe even buy a related item sold by your brand.
Well, too many sellers resort to using the #AmazonGiveaway hashtag all over social media in the hopes of getting as many entrants as possible.
But then you’ll only collect people who are obsessed with getting free stuff.
There are Facebook groups where people share giveaways they’ve heard about, and you can bet that the people in these groups enter for anything and everything.
Instead, you’ll want to use hashtags that appeal to your target audience, and this will require some research. Scour Instagram and Twitter for similar products and see what hashtags they are using. Ultimately choose the most relevant ones that have hundreds of thousands of posts each.
Just because you can only require action on Twitter and YouTube doesn’t mean you can’t promote the contest elsewhere. You should promote it to any audience that you already have and prompt people to share. If you’re giving something away that is really valuable or if the odds of winning are high (and you tell people about the odds), then fans and followers will be more likely to share it.
Because getting it in front of the right people is so important, it can help to have somewhat of a fan base already.
You could also reach out to influencers. If you’ve worked with an influencer before for a discount or new release, you could see what they would charge you to share your giveaway with their followers. As always, choose someone with an audience base likely to want your product.
Being very selective in how you promote your giveaway will increase the odds that the exposure will lead to more sales and reviews in weeks or months to come.
Remember: exposure and traffic are the only givens when it comes to giveaways and contests. How you use the influx is up to you.
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