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The power of hosting Offline to Online (O2O) Giveaways

by 
 
December 3, 2019

Five best tips on taking your giveaways online - surprise, engage and amaze.

The power of hosting Offline to Online (O2O) Giveaways

Summary:

Meandering between offline and online can be tricky. When speaking of taking your giveaway online you need to remember about these five principles:

  • Promote your free giveaway via any touchpoint available.
  • Use social media or dedicated website to host a giveaway campaign (or if you’re feeling energised, try both).
  • Use offline branding to promote your online presence (e.g. product packaging, printed receipts).
  • Opt for relevant and original giveaway rewards.
  • Run your product giveaway with a proper follow-up campaign (e.g. announce winners, offer consolation prizes, invite customers to participate in other activities)

How to spur customers to interact with your brand? How to motivate them to drop by your site regularly? And finally, how to encourage them to buy your products?

The short answer is: with a giveaway!

Hosting a giveaway is, at the same time, one of the easiest and the most pleasant marketing undertakings aimed at generating buzz around your brand. And what's even better is that with an original idea and spot-on execution, it can bring you even more traffic by being listed in numerous case studies and posts full of inspiring giveaway ideas. But now the question arises, where and how should I host and promote my giveaway campaign?

The O2O marketing (Online to Offline or Offline to Online) is the buzzword for many digital marketers as seamless customer journey between the digital and physical forms of business is crucial in maintaining high customer engagement rates and keeping up a coherent brand identity. Whereas offline marketing tends to be more costly and harder to track, it's more challenging to achieve a sense of trust by using solely digital channels. That's why skimming over offline presence, and vice versa may lead your business to miss out on potential sales and engagement. This risk also goes for manifold incentives: discount vouchers, gift cards, loyalty programs, referral schemas, and you guessed it right - giveaways. 

Buckle up as I am going to give you the top five tips for taking your giveaway online.

Five tips on how to take your offline giveaway online

Making your giveaway available for both digital and more traditional customers is a no-brainer - more visitors lead to more leads, and that should translate into more sales. It looks easy on paper, but hosting a giveaway that is fun, effective, and secure tends to be a tad more complicated. 

Here are some tips on how to successfully take your giveaway online:

All roads lead to...your giveaway.

Roads lead to many directions, but your customers' GPS should take them to only one location - your giveaway. Let your customers know about the giveaway via every customer touchpoint available (be it offline or online) - printed receipts, emails, newsletters, social media, dedicated landing pages, and even information received from a shop assistant in your brick-and-mortar stores. They all have the potential to bring in new visitors. But attracting entrants is just the first step as hosting a giveaway is all about generating valuable traffic with good content and a reciprocal approach to marketing. Remember one simple rule: quality beats quantity. 

When selecting your giveaway gateways, you need to strike a balance between simple entry rules and more rigid forms. The first will undoubtedly generate useless traffic and attract droves of treasure hunters that dropped by to get free stuff. The latter approach, with detailed forms to fill out and a set of tasks to-do before being registered as an official giveaway participant, can easily deter your potential customers from taking part in your free giveaway.

Example of a simple entry form
Source: SteamyKitchen - an example of a simple entry form


One way to solve this issue is to create a simple entry form but ask soon-to-be participants to share your image or some hashtag on social media to confirm their identity and genuine interest in your company. Most social media users are willing to share content they identify with and not random gibberish.

Make a choice (or not) - web or social media giveaway

There are two main digital spaces for hosting a giveaway: social media or dedicated website or a landing page. You can choose either of those or use both as those separate platforms offer different benefits. 

Using web channels is a great way to generate leads and make visitors explore your website more. Using your domain or a dedicated landing page also improves trackability and as a result, offers a great lesson on how to do things better in the future. On the other hand, running a giveaway on social media channels (predominantly on Instagram and Facebook) can increase your following, and all-in-all are just easier to host. But beware of internet trolls, make sure to come up with an original hashtag and learn from the mistakes of other brands.   

Example of a web-based giveaway
Source: Margaritaville - an example of a web-based giveaway


Use offline branding to increase giveaway engagement

You must have seen giveaway and contest ads placed right on the product - may be on the Coca Cola bottle or a package of oriental seasoning? That's what I mean when it comes to taking your giveaway from the offline world right into the digital. Include a simple QR code directly on the packaging that your customers can quickly scan to go to your dedicated giveaway channel (e.g., a landing page). If you opt for a social media giveaway, you can always place a hashtag right on the packaging and entice customers to share it by offering valuable rewards. 

Source: SIG - an example of offline branding


Make the giveaway rewards relevant to your brand

Speaking of prizes, is iPhone ok? In most cases - no, it's not. If you jump into the rabbit hole using #giveaway hashtag, brace yourself for an invasion of Apple merchandise. I get it - they are pricey, represent a class status, and are perfect as rewards. But offering them over and over again, makes their value rapidly drop in the eyes of potential customers. Plus, why not give away products or incentives that are directly connected to your brand and services that you offer. If you are not overly keen on offering your products as rewards, you can always organize an exclusive partnership with a brand that provides complementary services or products to your own. For instance, if you sell computer parts, why not partnering with some computer software providers and offering a free subscription of let's say anti-malware software?

An example of a giveaway partnership
Source: Magnet Kitchens - an example of a giveaway partnership


Don't finish the giveaway with a cliffhanger

When entrants decide to share their data with you and invest their efforts into participating in your giveaway, you better deliver them the treatment they deserve. Don't leave them hanging and design a proper follow-up messaging campaign even if you're bearing bad news. You can always come up with some consolation prizes for participants who almost made it. Failing to announce the winner of the giveaways or a draw can result in losing customers indefinitely who will hold off purchasing products just in case of winning them or will think that this whole thing was nothing more than a scam aimed at personal data phishing.      

Voucherify consolation message and a discount
Source: Voucherify - an example of a post-giveaway message


Now, with all these tips and best practices under your belt, let's check out an example of a successful offline to online giveaway transition made by SIG company and their newest initiative - PAC.ENGAGE.  

How to give to receive - SIG company giveaway case study

In the mid-2019, SIG reached out to Voucherify with an idea of a brand-new campaign - Lucky Raffle giveaway. SIG is a Germany-based company offering various types of packagings for beverages and liquid food products. Inspired by the growing digital presence of customers and brands, SIG decided to launch a brand-new initiative called PAC.ENGAGE that builds “connections beyond the pack”. The gist of the campaign revolves around placing QR codes on products' packaging that direct customers to fun giveaways, online quizzes, loyalty programs, and more. The company offers highly customizable building blocks that can be used by its clients to personalize the initiative according to clients’ brand styles and communication models. Besides providing actionable customer data and increased tracking possibilities, PAC.ENGAGE also helps to build customer engagement at the most intimate touchpoint - during direct interaction between a potential client and your product. 

As of today, SIG supports the Lucky Raffle giveaway campaign that via QR codes takes customers right into visually stunning landing pages so that they can register as giveaway participants. The customisation blocks allow SIG clients to offer many incentives ranging from material rewards to gift cards and discount vouchers. The Voucherify promotion engine that was used to support the campaign, automatically draws winners and assigns rewards taking this burden off SIG's clients' shoulders. 


PAC.ENGAGE initiative - on the crossroads of offline and online giveaways
Source: PAC.ENGAGE exemplary Lucky Raffle landing page


Why does SIG program set a good pattern for other brands in terms of hosting offline to online giveaways?

First of all, it is an excellent example of a smooth transition between physical and digital space. Customers don't have to seek information as it is presented right on the product in the form of a scannable QR code. The PAC.ENGAGE initiative allows its clients to use both dedicated landing pages and social media harvesting the benefits of both approaches. Finally, it's great to see a company using traditional modes of communication to promote their online presence, which goes to show that the distinction between offline and online becomes increasingly hazy, and perhaps quite soon, such a distinction would be merely obsolete. 

If you need a flexible, easy to implement and reliable software to create and host online giveaways reach out to us.

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