Are you new to entering sweepstakes and looking for tips on how to get started? If you're ready to try the sweepstakes niche, this guide will make it easier! If you're already a sweepstakes fan, keep reading; these tips might help you improve your campaigns.
 

First off, let’s clear up what a sweepstakes campaign is.

Sweepstakes are prize giveaways where the winner (or several winners) is chosen by luck. To participate in sweepstakes, you only need to insert your email, name, or some other basic info. The most popular prizes are Apple products. Second place goes to shopping gift cards (example below). Third is probably travel offers.

Note that sweepstakes can be found under different names due to network-specific naming conventions. The most commonly found names would be surveys and sweeps, leadgen and vouchers.

Types of Sweepstakes Offers (SOI, DOI, CC Submit)

Some sweepstakes need the user to subscribe to some services, not just insert an email or name. These are harder to convert and are of much greater value to the merchant so  carry a higher payout. 

There are three main types of sweepstakes:

  • SOI: Sweepstakes with simple registration (need to specify your data, usually email). This is the easiest type of offer and has the lowest payout. 

  • DOI: Sweepstakes with a confirmation requirement via your e-mail (follow the link from the letter that arrives after registration). This is a more difficult option to work with but the payouts are higher than in SOI.

  • CC Submit: Here, the user needs to enter bank card data and agree to a subscription option. The user must pledge a certain amount of money. This is the most difficult and not entirely legal option and also the most profitable but not all affiliate programs work with it.

Seasonality

The sweepstakes vertical is known as an evergreen vertical because they are profitable at any time of the year. There is no right or wrong season to run these types of offers. Usually the period immediately before holidays provides more opportunities to create new angles and provide users with “unique short-term-opportunity” to win a Christmas gift box, or Halloween candy coupon. 

How has it been affected by COVID-19?

The sweepstakes and contest industry saw a slight decline in March from the coronavirus pandemic but since then it has continued to grow. Users have nothing better to do and are quite bored (assumption) hence they click through ads and landing pages but don’t convert. Users are focussing on buying necessities only and are not impulse buying as the foreseeable future remains uncertain. In fact, there are a lot of affiliates incorporating new covid19 angles into their sweepstakes campaigns to benefit from the situation.


Where to run Sweepstakes? Top GEOs

Sweepstakes work on both mobile and desktop traffic and in practically any GEO. As we’ve already mentioned in previous newsletters, beginners often jump at sweepstakes campaigns as they’re really easy to convert. Still, lacking prior experience they frequently make mistakes by targeting the incorrect GEO. SOI and DOI offers work for all countries, but if you’re only starting you should go for cheaper traffic, that is, Tier 2 and Tier 3 countries. Running successful Sweepstakes campaigns is also possible in Tier 1, but in that case it’s recommended to choose locations with the highest volumes, such as US or LATAM countries.

 

How to advertise?

Pre-landers

By their very nature, sweepstakes offers don’t work with direct-linking. Instead, they often require pre-landers, which, in turn, are used in order to engage the user with the possibility of winning a prize.

 

What should you know while creating a converting pre-lander?

  • Your call-to-action should be clear and explicit. Make sure it’s obvious how users should enter the sweepstakes;

  • the visual appeal of your pre-lander is 70% of the success for your sweepstakes campaign. A user will not stop at the pre-lander which is plain and doesn’t evoke interest;

  • there is a direct relation between the conversion rate and the loading time of your pre-lander. The longer it takes to load, the lower the CR will be;

  • optimize the pre-landers for different languages depending on the GEOs you’ve chosen. The pre-landers with the languages native to the GEO you’re targeting perform better than those that rely on the international English language.

  • Pre-lander on mobile requires an faster load time. Mobile users are even more impatient about loading time. Make sure your pre-lander loads in less than 1 second.

  • Experiment with a countdown timer on your pre-lander. It aims to encourage people to enter now rather than postpone it.

 

Where to find prelanders?

There are two options. Often, one can choose between pre-made landers and pre-landers offered by a partner, or just copy someone’s pre-lander and edit it. However, such pages are not unique, and users who see different ads will be redirected to the same offers. This will not help you gain their trust. Creating your own pre-lander is usually the best solution. In Cpamatica we have added a pack of pre-landers that are perfect for sweepstakes.

 

How much testing does it require?

It actually shouldn’t take long. It might take three days to do proper testing. After that, blacklist non-working sources and variables, and choose those that perform best or have the potential to perform better. Once you black-listed all the unnecessary, split-test on the rest for 5–7 more days (approximately) to get dipper in numbers.

 

Conclusion

This is a great area for newbies to get their feet wet and start to learn the basics of CPA affiliate marketing. Single opt-in, double opt-in and cc submit are all different types of Sweepstakes offers. They each need a slightly different approach but as long you know their strengths and weaknesses you can make each of the offer types profitable.

As your knowledge (and budget) grow, you will naturally want to take on bigger and better projects. Experiment with Sweepstakes CPA offers! Try different tactics. Have fun with it!