There is a right way and a wrong way to have a contest. The right way is when you have a strategy to achieve a specific goal and elicit the behaviors you want from the participants in the contest. When we promote a contest with our clients, there are two metrics we watch very carefully as they relate to our contest registration forms and visitor participation. These are:
Completion Rate – The rate at which a person completes the online form.
Conversion Rate – How much more likely users of the online registration form are to request additional product/service information.
The first metric indicates how USABLE the tool is (i.e. do users actually get through it). The second metric tells us how USEFUL it is in terms of increasing the likelihood for additional attention.
The Completion Rate of all visitors who begin our online registration forms is over 95 percent. This is not an accident. This has involved lengthy testing. In addition to a high percentage of completions, such users are 20 times more likely to request more information regarding a product or service (i.e. cars) than users that do not use the online registration form.
An Exchange of Value
As an example, a recent contest we held for our client over the last week had 180 participants who completed an online registration form to enter. Of the 180, there were 97 who requested specific information regarding the product our client offers. Now get this, of the 180 there were 82 that indicated they would be purchasing the product within the next 12 months! These people provided a name, email, phone number, and an estimated date that they plan to purchase.
We call this an exchange of value: where the participant (potential customer) perceives a high enough value that they are willing to exchange something that they want, for something we want which is their level of interest and when they plan to purchase.