Your Winners List Can Be a Marketing Tool
And the winner is… surprise – your brand!
There is an important difference between simply preparing a winners list which is a basic legal requirement, and posting winners. So when addressing the issue of winners lists, use the opportunity to accomplish a few important things.
Compliance — First there is the administrative requirement. By law, a winners list must be made available to the public (either online or by mail). Where and when a list of winners can be obtained is stated in the Official Rules. It may sound silly but while a winners list contains the names of winners for a sweepstakes or contest, it is very important for you as the sponsor to release only the winner’s first name, last initial, city and state. This is to protect the privacy of the winner. You will also need to prepare and provide a formal winners list to the states if the promotion is registered. These include New York, Florida and in certain circumstances, Rhode Island. Florida also recently released an update on registration requirements that provides important information for anyone considering running a sweepstakes promotion in that state.
When you run a promotion internationally you’ll also need to familiarize yourself with a broader set of privacy requirements when discussing winners. Safe Harbor is the name of a policy agreement established between the United States Department of Commerce and the European Union. It provides a specific set of rules for how U.S. companies export and handle personal data that would appear on a winners list of European citizens.
Credibility — With the administrative requirement met, you can use post congratulations messages to your social media sites to establish credibility for your brand. Consumers enter sweepstakes and contests with hopes of winning. The simple act of posting the winners will encourage greater participation in subsequent promotions.
Content – Let’s face it, coming up with fresh and compelling content to post on your website, Facebook page or other online channels can be a challenge. A discussion of winners is all good so it’s easy to see how it reinforces, in the best possible way, the messaging of the promotion. And if you are fortunate enough to have selected a winner with a social following they will likely pay it forward. This peer to peer authenticity is pure gold in the world of branding. Just be sure you have properly fulfilled the prizes. You don’t want any surprises in the form of criticism on the part of the winners.
Our advice to assigning the task of preparing and fulfilling a winners list is simple. Give it to a qualified person who understands the three ways you will receive value. If you would like additional tips on how to leverage winners in your next promotion please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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