How to Use Sweepstakes and Contests for Lead Generation

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For many companies, lead generation from sweepstakes, contests, and giveaways is how they find new customers.

Leads are potential customers who share their contact information during a sweepstakes or contest in exchange for a chance to win a prize. Running sweepstakes and contests allow B2B and B2C businesses to market to the right type of audience and take them closer to making a purchase by entering them into the sales funnel during the giveaway promotion.

Sweepstakes and contests are an easy way for businesses with an established social media following to increase brand awareness, get leads on autopilot, and boost sales.


Sweepstakes and contests when done effectively can help to build your brands visibility while creating a system that allows you to nurture your giveaway participants and generate sales-qualified leads on demand.

The following tips can be used by businesses of all sizes. The key is to test and modify your sweepstakes or contest lead generation strategy to make it work for your customer base. Here is how to use sweepstakes and contests for lead generation.


  • How do sweepstakes and contests generate leads?
  • How can I generate leads quickly from giveaways?
  • What do you need to generate leads from a social media contest?


What Is a Sweepstakes Lead?

A sweepstakes lead or contest lead is any participant who indicates an interest in your brand’s product or service and has entered your giveaway.

Sweepstakes leads typically hear from the brand after entering the giveaway promotion. That is because all sweepstakes require leads to opt-in to receive marketing messages and SMS marketing requires express consent.

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Let’s say you enter a social media contest for a chance to win a prize from a brand. They ask you to take a survey to learn more about what model of car you’d like to buy.

After entering the giveaway, you receive an email from the car company that created the contest about the models of vehicles that match your preferences.

This process would be far less intrusive than if some random company called you without any knowledge or care about whether you plan to buy a new car soon. That’s what it’s like to be a social media contest lead.

And from the perspective of the car company, the information that they collected from you during the social media contest helps them to further personalize their marketing communications to address your existing problems.

They also avoid wasting time calling leads who are not interested at all in purchasing a new car.

Sweepstakes, contest, and giveaway leads are part of the broader sales and marketing lifecycle that consumers follow as they transition from visitor to lead to customer. Not all leads are created equally but sweepstakes and contests are highly effective at generating qualified sales leads.

Why Do You Need Sweepstakes and Contests for Lead Generation?

When a visitor initiates a relationship with your brand by entering your sweepstakes or contest, the transition from visitor to customer is much more organic.

Sweepstakes lead generation occurs after you’ve already managed to attract an audience and are ready to scale up the volume of leads you generate and identify sales-qualified leads.

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Lead Generation Process for Sweepstakes, Contests, and Giveaways

Now that we understand how sweepstakes and contest lead generation finds customers, let’s walk through the steps of the sweepstakes and contest lead generation process:

  1. First, a potential participant discovers your sweepstakes or social media contest via one of your marketing channels, such as via your website entry form or SMS.
  2. Then a visitor clicks on your call-to-action CTA, namely a button, image or message that says “Enter to Win” to official enter your promotion.
  3. Then that CTA takes your new participant to enter their contact information, complete a survey (optional) in exchange for a chance to win a prize.
  4. Once the participant has completed the entry process, you’ll have a new lead that you can now send follow-up messages to. This is where nurturing begins to convert that lead into a paying customer.

See how everything fits together so that you can integrate sweepstakes and contests with your existing sales process? Plus with giveaway platforms featuring entry form templates and follow-up message templates, it’s really easy to set up.

To sum it up: Participant clicks a CTA that takes them to a giveaway entry page, where they fill out the entry form to get a chance to win a prize, at which point they become a lead.


Why Not Just Buy Sweepstakes Leads?

Brands want people to enter their sweepstakes and contests and they want to attract participants fast. Enter: The temptation to buy sweepstakes leads.

Buying leads for a giveaway, as opposed to organically generating, seems easier and takes far less time and effort, despite the upfront cost.

First of all, these leads that you purchased have not engaged with your brand. Typically, they “opt-in” via a generic website when singing up for something, and they didn’t actually opt in to receive marketing messages from your company.

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The messages you send to them are therefore spam, and sending spam messages is disruptive. This is how people feel when brands flood them with marketing messages when they only opted in for the chance to win a prize.

If the prospect has never engaged with your brand or indicated an interest in your products or services, but still enters for a chance to win, then they are sweepers. There is a high likelihood that such participants will not engage with your promotion or messaging.

If they not interested in your brand, they may also mark your email or SMS follow-up messages as spam, which hurts your sender reputation and your email deliverability.

It’s always better to generate leads organically by having visitors come to your giveaway entry form instead of buying guaranteed leads.


Key Takeaways

  • Participants are potential customers who can be nurtured and guided through the sales process.
  • Lead gen from sweepstakes and contests means creating interest in your brand by collecting customers’ contact information and conducting surveys.
  • You can collect opt-in leads from a sweepstakes, contest or giveaway via a website entry form, SMS or mail-in entry.
  • Focusing on generating sales-qualified leads from participants is more profitable and will make it possible to determine the cost per lead per giveaway campaign, sales conversion rate, and compare it against profits generated.

Grow Your Brand With Sweepstakes and Contest Lead Generation

Every business needs to generate leads. Using sweepstakes and contests, you can drive leads even with a niche audience.

Sweepsify gives you everything you need to run a sweepstakes, contest or raffle. Consider which giveaway prizes are best to attract your potential customers and create a giveaway!

Looking for a sweepstakes company to help you with your next giveaway? Sweepsify helps you find top sweepstakes companies in seconds. Create your free Premium account now to get started.