Do you make sure to plan every part of your online contest before you set it live? If so, you’re doing a good job.
After all, we want our contest to achieve our end goal -- to build brand awareness, grow an email list, generate sales, and so on.
Follow up emails are by far the most important component of your contest. However, many contests fail because people don’t get reminded about the contest they joined.
Once people sign up for your contest, you know that you must email them to say thank you. But what next? If you’re like most marketers, you’d go silent after the first email -- and wait for your contest to convert.
In today’s guide, we’re going to teach you everything you should know about contest follow up emails. We’ll cover the following:
- Why follow up emails for leads matters
- The five types of follow up emails you should send your contest entrants
Why Follow up Emails Are Important During a Contest
Here’s a truth you must deal with: You don’t have everyone’s undivided attention.
One of the challenges you encounter is keeping your contestants hooked while they’re doing and looking at a hundred other things. These are offers from competing brands, social media posts, notifications, to-do lists, and more.
For how long can they stick around? Follow up emails make sure that contestants stay from start to finish.
Here are three compelling reasons you should be sending follow up emails:
- Many people lead busy lives. They may join your contest today and completely forget about it tomorrow. Sending them a little reminder is all it takes to make them act.
- The more you follow up with your audience, the less likely they are to lose interest in your contest.
- You make a good impression on them. People like referring you because they know your contest is active.
5 Must-Send Follow Up Emails for Online Contest Campaigns
1. The email that confirms a participant’s entry
Confirmation emails serve an important purpose: They prevent fraud. Contests can be gamed by anyone. Usually, fraudsters create fake email addresses using generators.
A double opt-in allows real participants to confirm their entry by clicking on a confirmation link. Here’s an example of a basic contest confirmation email:
Here’s a useful tip to get honest participants to confirm their entry:
After they enter their email address in your lead capture page, send them to a page that says, “Thank You For Entering Our Contest! Please Confirm Your Entry In Your Email.”
2. The email after a participant registers in the contest
This email you send sets the tone for your relationship with your audience. Remember that people joined your contest because you caught their interest. Now, it’s your turn to heighten that interest.
In your email, thank them for signing up. “Thank you” shows appreciation and makes people feel good about themselves.
Here are more things to include in your email:
- A simple introduction - It’s common courtesy to introduce yourself. Your first email is the perfect avenue for telling them who you are. Introductions don’t have to be elaborate. What’s important is that people know who they’re dealing with.
- Points and unique referral link - Specify how many points a participant received for registering in your contest as well as the number of points they must reach. Give out his referral link so he can copy and paste it anywhere he prefers to share your contest.
- Set expectations - Remind them about what they must do to increase their chances of winning. State the winner announcement date. You may have included most of these details on the contest page, but it doesn’t hurt to repeat them in your email. If you plan to stay in touch after the contest, let them know as well.
- Link to your social media accounts - If you give social media updates about your contest, add links to your profiles. Tell them to follow you to stay up to date.
3. The email after new people sign up through the referral link
Here’s a simple email template I created that shows how you can notify contest participants who’ve successfully brought in new referrals.
This simple message effectively motivates people to keep spreading the word. Here’s why:
- It reminds them of how close they are to winning by showing the remaining points they should reach.
- Letting them know that they have a few days left until the contest builds up a sense of urgency.
- Giving them more ideas on how to get more referrals shows that you care about them winning.
4. The email when a reward is unlocked
Finally, your contest has come to an end. Why use email to notify people that they’ve won?
For one, making a social media announcement doesn’t guarantee that winners will see the post. While you post a status update, be sure to email your winners as well.
In your email, ask the winners to respond within a specified number of hours so they can claim their prize. This follow up email deadline allows you to pick another winner if they don’t reply.
Follow up emails for winners can be done in different ways. Here’s an example of how yours might look:
As you can see, the message above gives winners the option to share a picture of themselves with the prize.
This is a smart tactic for gathering user-generated content. With your winners’ permission, you can use their pictures to build social proof and more engagement.
5. The email that alerts participants of possible fraud
Cheating in online contests happens all the time. We previously discussed various ways to prevent cheating so be sure to check out the post.
On top of these fraud prevention strategies, we suggest that you send an email to every participant whose activity you suspect to be fraudulent.
Here at UpViral, our software detects fraud based on the same IP address, email verification, and multiple fake referrals. This allows us to automatically send out emails to suspicious participants.
That’s it! Hopefully, our five follow up emails gave you a solid idea on how to set up a follow up email campaign for your upcoming contest. Again, these emails keep your participants interested, reminds them to do the work to win, and positions you as a great brand.
Looking for a viral marketing platform that creates contests, giveaways, and sweepstakes? Try UpViral. With the UpViral software, you can set up these five email notifications and let them do the work.
Got more follow up email tips to share? Ran a contest recently? Share your ideas in the comments below.