Strategy Session: 7 Ways to Win at Sweepstakes
However, we didn't actually have to book any of these trips.
The winner simply received a $10,000 check from Edgars. We wished him "good luck with your great adventure!" and that was it. What he actually chose to do with the money was his business.
It was a formula that worked month after month for more than three years.
However, we also took advantage of special opportunities that came our way and turned them into sweepstakes, too.
The Leather Couch
There was a time that one of Edgars' fashion photographers purchased an exquisite Italian leather couch for one of our shoots.
Edgars didn't sell couches, and it didn't know what to do with it afterward. So Edgars asked me to include it in one of our sweepstakes: "How Would You Like To Win ... A Couch?"
"Win a couch" didn't seem very exciting to me-unless you needed one and had very specific tastes, so the challenge was to make it more interesting.
I trimmed the photograph, so it only showed a small, hard-to-identify section of the couch and called the sweepstakes "You Tell Us."
The copy read something like:
Edgars' top photographer took a photograph of our top prize-but he may have been too close. You tell us what he was shooting at-and you could be a winner.
I also included a few obscure clues in the copy. It was a tremendously successful promotion, and I learned an important lesson that I'll share with you at the end of this article.
Our Most Successful Sweepstakes
One holiday season, we came up with the idea of "Edgars Will Wipe Your Account Clean." We promised to take 100 card holders and simply cancel all the outstanding charges on their bills if they won.
Besides being a highly popular sweepstakes—it had an unintended effect that none of us could have predicted.