Advent Competitions 2023: Tips & top picks
The countdown to Advent competition season has begun…
While some compers relish the prospect of a December packed with chances to win prizes, the mere idea of the daily advent comps routine is absolutely horrifying to others!
I’m in the middle somewhere – I enjoy the generosity of promoters at this time of year, but I do find it boring to spend hours every day going through a long list of daily prize draws when I can see that the comps already have thousands of entries! Indeed, Advent comps are what attract a lot of new blood to the comping scene in December, so there are more comments than ever on Instagram and Facebook posts – making it much, much harder to win.
Still, I always get asked for tips on how to tackle the Advents and if they’re worth doing, so I hope this blog post will be helpful to those of you ready to jump in head first! I’ll also be adding some of my own favourite advent competitions to the ‘linky’ list at the end of the post.
You may have noticed a few brands starting their daily giveaways early, but most brands will be launching them on Friday, 1st December. Can you believe some compers even take the day off work to get properly stuck in?
Advent Competition formats
Most brands will use a standard format for their December competition. Entries usually open at midnight for website entry advent comps – or on social media, most daily advent competition posts will go live between 7am and 10am. You’ll usually have to enter on the same day before midnight – but some brands and bloggers will launch a new competition every day, but with closing dates a couple of weeks later.
- Classic Advent competition – one prize draw every day for 24 days from 1st to 24th December (this is the most popular option!)
- ’12 days of Christmas’ promotion – one prize draw every day starting on either the 1st or the 13th December
- Advent instant win – there’s one winner a day who instantly wins the prize if they are the first to enter after a random ‘winning moment’
- Weekly Advent – four weekly prizes throughout December.
In some cases, there will be prizes on some days, but only discounts or offers on other days – or the competition may only run on weekdays.
Some brands choose to run their daily Advent comps on a mobile app – Jet2, M&S and Uniqlo had daily giveaways and offers in 2022.
How to find Advent Competitions
Although I have my own popular list of instant wins and daily draws here on SuperLucky, it’s impossible for me to add the hundreds of December dailies to it! But I will be adding my 2023 Advent Top Picks to this blog post – scroll down to the end for a list of my favourites, which I’ll be adding from 1st December onwards.
To find more Advent competitions, use the ready made resources that are available online to create your own list that you can use daily.
Start with a browse of one (or more) of the main UK competition sites below, bookmarking your favourite advent comps as you go. Then each day, pop back and see what’s new – and add any new comps you like to your existing bookmarks list.
www.competitiondatabase.co.uk don’t have a specific Advent category, but advent comps will still be included in their regular listings.
I also recommend checking out the Advent Picks Facebook group, where Tony maintains an extensive list of Advent competitions.
Tips for Advent Competitions
Read the instructions carefully
December is a hectic time for compers and it’s easy to just plough your way through your entries without paying much attention. But this is when mistakes are made – commenting on a shared Facebook post instead of the original, not tagging a friend, spelling a hashtag wrong on Instagram, forgetting to follow as well as retweet, etc! Check out my list of the top ten mistakes compers make to see if you’re making common mistakes which might be stopping you from winning.
Watch out for promoters running their competition on all platforms too – often they will post to Instagram and automatically share the same content to X (Twitter) and Facebook, without telling people! Enter on multiple platforms if you have time, usually the promoter will just choose a winner from one platform as it’s difficult to collate entries from three. If you want to stick to one platform, opt for X as you risk bans on Facebook or Instagram.
If it’s a shopping centre or local business that’s running the Advent competition, ask before you enter if the prize will be posted or must be collected. It can be disappointing to win only to find out it’s collection only, when you live 100 miles away. It’s a good idea to find a local friend who’s happy to be tagged, and to tag you, in local Advent comps – post a request on our Find a Friend post in the Lucky Learners Facebook group.
Don’t get banned!
It’s really easy to get in trouble on Facebook or Instagram for repetitive actions – and a lot of compers tend to get a ‘ban’ in the first week of December. I suggest you only do a handful of Facebook comps, then switch to Instagram, then switch to X, then do some web or blog comps. Don’t spend too much time on one platform, don’t tag too many friends, add more to your comment than just a tag and read my advice on how to avoid an Instagram ban. I started using a second account @discohat on Instagram this year, so I have a back up account if I get a ban on @superluckydi. It’s also a sensible option to start a second account if you’re getting close to your 7,500 following limit so you don’t have to dedicate all your time to unfollowing!
Use browser bookmarks
Bookmarks are a comper’s best friend! I have recorded a full video guide with lots of tips on using browser bookmarks – see my blog post How to use bookmarks in Chrome and Safari if you want to learn how to master these time-saving tools.
I save links to my favourite advent comps in a folder labelled Adv on my Bookmarks Bar – inside are several folders, for Facebook Advents, X Advents, Web Advents and then more for Gleam, Instagram, apps etc (see my 2022 screenshot below).
Each day I then right-click a folder name and choose Open all bookmarks to open all the Advents in new tabs, then enter one by one, closing tabs as I go. Put 15-20 links maximum in each folder so it doesn’t slow you down too much. Keep these folders and each year you can reuse them! I also rename bookmarks where the comp opens or closes at a certain time, eg ends 5pm @LEONrestaurants.
Decide on a handful of essentials
If you don’t have much time to comp, limit yourself to 15 or so essential comps where you really want to win the prizes – and make sure you do those every day. If you have a copy of my 2023 BootComp Planner, you can list these on page 132 as a reminder! File those into Essentials bookmark folders in your Advents folder. Then if you get those done – you can move on to your other folders. Keep in mind that entry numbers tail off after the first 10 days of December, as people get bored or simply run out of time, so try to avoid burnout!
If you’re scrolling through Instagram, be choosy – only comment to win prizes that you really want or on low entry giveaways – it’s just not worth risking getting banned by entering every competition you see.
Use autofill to fill forms quickly
When you’re filling the same form every day, take advantage of your browser’s autofill function. If you want more options and don’t mind paying, I recommend Roboform Everywhere (my referral link – you’ll get 6 months free if you join!) and have used it for years. With Roboform you can SAVE the contents of an entry form before submitting, and load it the next day – handy for dailies that have unusual fields to be completed.
Don’t opt in to receive emails
Most of the brands who run advent competitions want to get you on board as a paying customer, so will encourage you to tick the box to opt in And lots of them will be adding you to their mailing lists when you enter – but think twice before ticking a box to receive more information, as usually it will be optional. Don’t register for daily email reminders of comps! Refer to your list or bookmarks instead.
If your inbox is already jam-packed, you’re not going to be able to cope with the influx of new emails – and might even miss a winning message! Get organised NOW by reading my Tips for a tidy inbox – search for missed wins or comps, then unsubscribe from (or automatically file away) newsletters, organise useful messages then be brave and delete everything else!
Look for low entry advent comps
Thousands of people visit the competition listings websites, so you’ll do better if you hunt for your own comps. There are lots of words and phrases you can combine to find your own Advent comps. They can appear at any time after the start of November until mid December – some companies only start their ’12 Days of Christmas’ on the 13th December! Search on Google, Instagram, TikTok, Facebook and X for ‘Advent competition’, ’12 days of christmas’, along with ‘win’ or ‘prizes’ to find comps. Try to search for that specific day: ‘Day 6 win’ for example, or add your local town to the search.
Set keyboard shortcuts to tag friends
Keyboard shortcuts are a massive timesaver for compers! You can type a few letters, and your device will automatically expand it into a phrase of your choice. With so many promoters asking us to tag friends in comments, shortcuts can be really helpful – but be careful as you could risk a ban for moving too quickly from one comment to the next.
To set shortcuts on an iPhone it’s Settings > General > Keyboard > Text replacement, on a Samsung device you should be able to find Text Shortcuts in your Settings, which you can access from your home screen or by tapping the cog icon on the on-screen keyboard.
Here’s a few examples of long phrases you could create a 2 or 3 letter shortcut for, and save yourself lots of time!
- Check out this giveaway @friend1 @friend2!
- I know @friend would love this in her Christmas stocking!
- This would make the perfect Christmas gift for @friend!
Check that your tagged friends are actively comping through the advents, and let them know you’ll be tagging them! If you have the 2023 BootComp planner, there’s a dedicated place to note down your Advent tagging mates on page 132.
Copy and paste comments
Have a notes file on your computer or mobile, and a set of answers: your favourite Christmas movie/food/song/tradition, etc. If you like, set Keyboard shortcuts for these phrases – for example I type ‘xs’ on my iPhone and it expands into ‘The Waitresses – Christmas Wrapping’! to answer the common ‘What’s your favourite Christmas song?’ question. Again, don’t do too much copy & pasting at once in case you get a ban!
Focus on other non-advent comps
While everyone else struggles to enter 200 advent comps every day, the number of entries for blog giveaways, creative comps, radio competitions, and purchase-necessary promotions will be way down – particularly comps that require you to leave your cosy sofa to enter! Consider only entering a handful of advents, and focusing your attention elsewhere. Personally, I prefer putting the effort into photo or video comps in December, as these will get much lower entry numbers. Photos of your Christmas jumper, decorations and tree are always useful to share for social media comps!
Watch what other compers are up to
Keep a close eye on your X, Facebook and Instagram feeds and stories to see which comps your friends are entering – you might spot some low entry treats! Check your tag notifications too. And you’ll find loads of compers tweeting entries on my Lucky Learners twitter list.
Check messages and notifications for wins!
An embarrassingly high number of winners never get their prizes because they forgot to check for winning emails, notifications or messages!
Don’t forget to :
- Search the Competition Winners Facebook group for your name
- Check Facebook Filtered Messages
- Check X message requests and notifications
- Check Instagram messages at least once a day in case you’ve been announced as a winner in a story – stories disappear after 24 hours!
- Check your email inbox and junk folder – if it’s too full, search quickly for ‘Congratulations’, ‘Winner’ or ‘Runner Up’ just in case
- Beware of the profile cloning scammers who pretend to be brands and contact ‘winners’ asking them to make payments to receive a non-existent prize.
- Be patient – although some brands contact and announce their winners the next day, sometimes they might wait until the New Year before getting in touch
How successful were compers in the 2022 advent comps?
I asked the members of my Lucky Learners Facebook group how they got on with Advent Competitions last year. Of around 950 members who responded, 90% entered the advent comps last year, and of those that did enter the comps, around half of them won a prize!
Lots of compers said they spent around an hour a day on advent comps, and picked up a couple of wins. Others say they found it overwhelming and this year they won’t devote quite as much effort to them! Personally, I had just two advent wins – Christmas lights on the M&S app, and a bottle of champagne (in a Linked In photo comp I found on Twitter!) – but I hardly entered any at all after the first few days as I was too busy. I did win £500 in a First Direct creative TikTok Christmas comp though, and won three lovely prizes in regular Instagram prize draws in December!
Finally, my last bit of advice is… take a break and get some fresh air! December is a really busy month anyway, without hundreds of extra comps thrown into the mix. Advent comping can be exhausting, so don’t burn yourself out and just do what you enjoy!
Di’s top Advent Competition Picks for 2023 – coming soon!
Below is a linky list of my favourite Advent competitions this year – I’ll add new ones to it as I spot them from 1st December onwards! If you can’t see the list below, click here to view it.
Some advent comps are running across three or four social media platforms – as Instagram is my usual comping platform, I’ve opted to list the Insta links below rather than Facebook, TikTok or X.