This was the second most common question asked by family and friends this past week.
The first was variations of people “colorfully” pointing out that I had neglected to notify their club / organization of the contest.
The answer is fairly simple. I wanted to test a potential new growth hack.
A few years ago I skimmed a blog post by Noah Kagan. One piece of advice in there changed my life forever. He suggested that new marketers single out one marketing tactic per week and try to implement it. Hence the TMD?’s “Fridays are for testing” policy was born.
If you were ever wondering why and where I vanish to on Fridays, now you know. I’m in a vortex testing new growth hacks. This little habit has become the foundation for some of our most successful growth campaigns. We find out quickly what works, what is hype and why.
- Pods? Hype
- RSS? Dead
- LinkedIn Helper? Worked well in 2017
- Pinterest? The next growth hacking frontier
- Instagram? Hasn’t worked for Growth Hackers since Facebook bought it
Cue the convo excerpt from a chat on Telegram
So, why did I want to test out a contest?
A few weeks ago I logged on to AppSumo (Groupon for marketers & tech nerds) to see they were hosting a giveaway. I haven’t heard of these working in AGES!! Was there a comeback? I was intrigued, I HAD TO TRY it!!
I entered the contest and found they had a fun new gamification aspect to it. Could this totally change the way people react to future contests? Does KingSumo have a large enough reach that people will recognize the web app when I use it to host the contest? Where do you even promote these types of things in 2018?
I needed to test it for myself. I spent the next few weeks gathering screen shots and intel into a file and finally, last Friday (7th of December) I decided to hit “go”.
There will be a book coming out shortly, with all of the screenshots and a play by play of the whole experience, but for now, let me just give you a few key takeaways.
- People HATE the kingSumo web app, I’ve been told it’s spammy, looks like a 12 year old’s instagram page, etc.
- When you communicate the value of the giveaway people will not look at it from the same point of view you do. I initially started out saying we were giving away $65,000 because that’s close to what is being written off of our books. People who don’t know your brand won’t value your services (yes, this was painful to hear, but it’s the truth). Which leads to my third point…
- Doing a giveaway like this, as a customer acquisition tactic, is only effective for consumer goods.
BUT WHY $65,000?
I needed a number that was so high people who’ve been drooling over TMD?services wouldn’t be able to resist. I needed a number so high that I could attract enough people to make the experiment successful in collecting the data I needed. Ironically I chose a number so high that people who don’t know about the Friday testing tradition, didn’t see the Friday launch and realize this was an opportunity for them to cash in on participating in our latest experiment. FYI, it’s actually $80,000,000 on our books.
A few notes on my experience with KingSumo.
Once their brand awareness increases they’ll be the gold standard.
While the majority of people I spoke with found the design spammy (screenshot below),
I appreciated the fact that they let brands create an infinite number of ways for contestants to earn more points (screen shots below)
Making this perfect for brands looking to use a giveaway to get their newest product in the hands of a potential brand advocate.
Several months ago, I won an electric scooter in a giveaway at the Tech Crunch Disrupt SF Conference. This is the first time I’ve ever won anything & I was the worst contestant they could’ve chosen. I was about to leave for a 5 week trip abroad and would not have time to post a ton of pics with it.
The KingSumo web app would’ve been ideal for this company, because the app allows you to gage who really really wants the prize & will become your #1 brand ambassador if they win. People can earn points by getting others to join the raffle OR they can earn points by completing other tasks that have them engaging with the brand.