I win more prizes on Twitter than by any other method – averaging a prize a week, in fact. But it’s not as easy as you think – some retweet giveaways get thousands of entries! So how can you increase your chances of winning a Twitter competition? Here are my top tips…
1. Don’t just retweet, retweet, retweet…
Retweet comps are easy to enter, which makes them incredibly hard to win. They also turn your profile page into a spammy list of adverts, and could end up with you getting filtered from Twitter search results. Instead, spend more time entering comps where the promoter asks for a reply, photograph or a comment. Send original tweets, reply to people you follow and most of all, enjoy tweeting. If you do enter retweet giveaways, enter as late as you can to ensure your entry is seen!
2. Reply to promoters
Interact with promoters by replying to their tweets – even if it’s not a requirement of entry. Make your tweets memorable. Add photos, be funny, say something about their amazing products – try tagging a Twitter friend too. ‘Great giveaway!’ will make them yawn. It’s hard to track all entries and choose a random winner for a retweet giveaway and some promoters will choose from replies instead. Note that if you choose to Quote tweet, it won’t count as a retweet and won’t pop up on the promoter’s Mentions tab unless you @ tag them.
3. Use a short username
Short, simple usernames are memorable, less likely to be misspelt by a promoter, and quick to type – and you’ll type it more than you realise, especially if you do Rafflecopter giveaways. Avoid numbers and underscores. Try not to let your username give away your age or your comping hobby – some promoters will be looking for winners of a certain age (usually those lucky twenty-somethings!) or dislike compers. Got a crap username? It’s easy to change it – the difficulty is finding one that’s not taken yet! To change it, simply log in, go to your Account Settings and type a new one in. Changing your username will not affect your followers, messages, and replies – you just need to let your followers know you’ve changed names, and search on your old name for a few weeks in case you’ve won a prize.
4. Tart up your profile page
A promoter might pop to your profile before deciding if you’re a winner – so make sure it looks good. Upload a profile photo (the default ‘egg’ rarely wins) and ideally a cover photo – if you’re not camera shy, use a photo of yourself. Add an entertaining bio and pin a fun non-comping tweet to the top of your profile – tap the three dots under an existing tweet to do this.
5. Follow local companies
Find and follow all your favourite local bars, restaurants, shopping centres, theatres, magazines, radio stations and cinemas on Twitter – most of them will do regular giveaways, and local Twitter comps get very few entries! The benefit of following smaller, local businesses is that they usually follow you back – and the more followers you have, the less likely you are to be filtered by Twitter. Add the companies to a Twitter list too. Tweet using your hometown hashtag and you’ll get new followers that way too!
6. Use Twitter search to find competitions
Don’t just look at your news feed and Twitter lists for comps. Use Twitter advanced search at www.twitter.com/search-advanced. Specify hashtags, dates, tweet types, or even restrict your search near a certain location. You can search for all sorts – try combining words like win, competition, prize, then add Instagram, reply, Facebook, blog depending on the type of comp you’re after – try your wish list prizes and your local town too. When you get your results, make sure to select Latest to see all recent tweets – enter right away, or Like the ones to check out later on. Happy with the results? Save by clicking More Options > Save Search and you can choose it as an option any time you start typing in the Twitter search box.
7. Ditch the notifications
If you use a phone to tweet, turn off distracting notifications – it really doesn’t matter who’s retweeted you! Go to Settings (the cog on your profile), then Notifications and turn off retweets and likes. The only notifications worth getting are messages – but I opt to turn off Mobile Notifications entirely in my iPhone settings and check the app regularly instead. If you lose the notifications, you’ll have less distractions and be able to concentrate on the comps!
8. Download TweetDeck
Tweetdeck is amazing – but you can only use it on a computer, not on a mobile device. It shows you a set of scrolling columns, which can be your feed, mentions, messages, a Twitter list, a search, or a user. At the top of each column you can filter the content, even specifying a location or date range. It’s really useful for following a hashtag – for example, if you’re at a Twitter party, or for finding competitions that aren’t hosted on Twitter (try the words Facebook, Instagram, Blog, Pinterest in your search columns).
9. Track hashtags
A hashtag is a topic that you can follow on Twitter by clicking it – #RedNoseDay, #BlueMonday, #WorldBookDay, #Halloween etc. Searching for a relevant hashtag along with the word win or competition should give a selection of results. Twitter parties have unique hashtags – tweet with the hashtag during the party (they generally last an hour, so entry numbers are low) and you can win prizes. TopCashback, Tots100, Foodies100, Britmums and Netmums host regular parties in the UK – do a regular search on ‘win Twitter party’ to find out when the next one is, or subscribe to my Google Comping Calendar at http://bit.ly/CompingCalendar. Never been to one? Read my Twitter party tips. Another way to find competitions is to follow other compers and click on the hashtags they tweet!
10. Save fun photos on your phone
Lots of my own Twitter wins involve tweeting a photo, so I have folders saved on my iPhone with competition photos and fun selfies in – so if I spot a comp while I’m at the bus stop, I can enter there and then. For Halloween, Mothers Day and Christmas you can guess exactly what promoters will be asking for, so set up folders of pumpkins, mum selfies and Christmas jumper photos. If you don’t win, you can always go back and delete your tweet – then use the photo again for another competition!
Finally, make sure you log in to Twitter as often as you can, because it’s fast moving and some giveaways don’t hang around for long!
Did you enjoy these tips? You might enjoy these too:
- How to use Twitter lists
- 10 tips to win more prizes on Instagram
- 10 tips to win more prizes on Facebook
And of course, you could buy my SuperLucky Secrets book for lots more tips!