Host a Giveaway to Grow Your Email List

Hosting a giveaway on social media is a great way to grow your email list and increase your engagement on social.

I love a win-win situation like this; however, the giveaway needs to be executed the right way or you risk harming your email Sender Reputation which will land your emails in the Spam folder.

Once you’re blacklisted by email providers as Spam it’s a long road to fixing your Sender Reputation; which means a long time that you won’t be able to sell via email.

How to Host a Giveaway the Right Way

1.Make sure the item you’re giving away is ONLY of interest to your Ideal Client. This means you should not give away Amazon gift cards, Visa gift cards, or anything else that is generic.

host a giveaway the right way example

When you giveaway something generic you will attract all types of people who want to win the prize. Who doesn’t want a free Visa gift card?

When you giveaway a specific service or digital product of yours you ensure you are attracting people who self-identify as a potential client.

Side note: don’t devalue your signature program or service by giving it away. A good giveaway prize is a low or mid ticket offer or service.

2.Make Sure Entering an Email Address is Part of the Entry Process 

When hosting a giveaway on social media a lot of people will set the entry rules to “like, comment, and share.”

That’s a great way to get a very temporary engagement boost on your social media channel of choice.

example of a bad set of giveaway rules
example of the right way to host a giveaway

A much better option is to have people engage in some way on social + enter their email address into a form so you can add them to your email list. 

This way you get a temporary engagement boost PLUS a permanent increase in your email list of people who know they would benefit from the services / digital products you have to offer. 

3.Make sure participants know you will email them and get them used to opening emails from you.

Growing your email list with Ideal Clients is only one part of the strategy for selling via email. 

The other parts include getting people to actually open your emails and click them to go to your website where they can apply for a service or purchase from you. 

That means when someone joins your list you want to get them in the habit of opening your emails and clicking — at a minimum opening your emails

So, first make sure it’s explicit that the person is opting in as a giveaway entry but also that you will email them from time to time with tips, advice, and information about offers. 

^ This part is important to make sure you comply with the FTC’s CAN-SPAM Act which governs email marketing. 

Next, tell them you’ll announce the winner on X date via email; this way they are on the look out for your emails and will open the email when it arrives!

Finally, after they enter their email address for the giveaway have an automated email go out thanking them for entering and linking to your blog, podcast, or other resource where they can immediately get free help. 

This helps train them to open + click your emails, and because you know they are interested in how you can help them solve a problem this is a supportive thing to do. 

BONUS Tip: Make Everyone a Winner (Sort of)

One thing I’ve always advised my clients to do is make everyone who enters via email a winner. 

This doesn’t mean they all get the grand prize for free. However, you can give everyone who entered a special discount code to purchase. 

This is once again, the type of win-win that I love. 

You get sales and everyone gets a juicy discount for entering.

Please make the discount juicy … 10% off is so basic and won’t really make anyone who was on the fence want to buy. I love discounts that are 25-30% off or more!

(Remember, you don’t want to de-value your signature program or service by giving it away or by deeply discounting it. Your giveaway should be for a low or mid-ticket offer.)

Follow These Tips to Grow Your List & Protect Your Sender Reputation 

The reason you want to follow these tips is because this is how to grow your email list using a giveaway by being strategic. 

It’s also how to avoid harming your Sender Reputation and ending up in Spam. 

If you grow your email list with the wrong people and start sending them emails about your offers down the line you’re likely to have consistently poor open and click-through rates.

You’re also likely to get manually marked as spam by the people who forgot who you were the minute they entered the contest (their only thought was on winning that gift card). Both of those things can harm your Sender Reputation very quickly.

Just like filing for bankruptcy harms your credit score for years, the same thing will happen to your email deliverability if you end up with a bad Sender Reputation with ESPs (email service providers aka Gmail, Yahoo, etc).

Follow these tips, stay in compliance with CAN-SPAM, and you will build your email list and your Sender Reputation!

Ready to focus on growing your email list with Ideal Clients and then following a proven email marketing strategy for informing, nurturing, and converting those Ideal Clients into paying customers? 

If so, my 90-minute Email Marketing Intensive is a great way to get started! 

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