Sunday, March 3, 2013
Book Blogger Confessions is a meme that allows book bloggers to discuss issues unique to what we encounter in the blogging world. Every 1st and 3rd Monday of the month we will post a question and invite you to answer, comment and discuss opinions and different views.
Please keep the dialogue courteous. No bashing!
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Question: Giveaways: As a blogger, how do you feel about extra entries, required entries, etc? Do you have a system to choose/announce winners and keep prizes organized? What method works best for you when hosting a giveaway? (Rafflecopter/Google Doc's or other)
What do you do about people who enter your giveaways but don't follow instructions exactly?
Have you ever had problems hosting a giveaway sponsored by an author or publisher who is supposed to send the prize to the winner and doesn't? How have you handled these issues?
As a prize winner - what do you do if your prize never arrives? Do you contact the blogger or just let it go?
Answer: I think extra entries are fine, but I try to keep mine limited so the person entering doesn't get frustrated. (Apologies if this isn't working!) I know I get frustrated when there are too many hoops to jump through. Even when said hoops are optional. I think we've all seen contests with long lists of people to follow. Sometimes I just bail in the middle of trying to complete the raffle form.
When I do my own giveaways, I try to keep most things optional. Sometimes (only sometimes) I will require a follow if I feel the prize is valuable, but not often. A lot of times I'll switch up the options too. I'll ask for a Twitter follow on one contest and a Facebook follow on another.
I've been mostly using Rafflecopter which is really working well. I do miss the ol' Google Docs at times or even picking the name from a comment. I liked having contests in the comments because I used to make games out of it. I even had a contest where the commenter had to look at the above comment and base an answer off of that. Rafflecopter is very helpful though in moderating, keeping track and picking a winner.
I have it right in the contest post rules that if the entrant doesn't follow the rules, I reserve the right to delete that particular entry. For example, if I want them to answer a specific question in the comments and they just say "Thanks for the giveaway" I'll delete the entry. It's not fair to those who followed the instructions carefully. I sometimes have contests for people who participate in a specific Challenge I'm hosting and I'll get a lot of outside entries on those. So again, I'll delete them as well. Sometimes, if it's apparent that a person is just confused by a technicality or maybe there's a language barrier, I'll e-mail them with instructions on how to fix things.
The other thing I always worry about is if a person doesn't get back to me within the alloted time. However, this has rarely happened. A few times issues had been made, but I had already picked another winner. Even though I say 48 or 72 hours, I *always* give extra time.
Luckily I have actually never had a problem with a publisher or author not sending a prize. At least I've never gotten notification about it.
As a winner if I don't receive a prize, I usually let it go. I don't know why. Maybe I'm embarrassed, don't want to seem whiny and/or greedy. I do remember one time that I didn't receive a book I had won and some other stuff and I did e-mail the host blogger. I was told that the author sent out the prizes. So, I figured that was that. Luckily, the author (Adrian Pheonix) is so kind she contacted me and sent me out another book and told me she would replace the other items as well. I told her not worry about that -- I just wanted the signed book!
So what do you guys do with your contests? Do you find Rafflecopter is the best method? What are some issues or problems you've had and how do you resolve them?