How to win a car – and drive your way to a fabulous prize!
Winning a car is what most compers dream of – collecting the keys to a shiny new motor, posing for those cheesy publicity shots with a giant grin – that’s the moment you know you’ve really made it in the world of comping! Back in 2002 I saw a competition advertised in Good Housekeeping to win my dream car – a VW Beetle. The entry method was complicated: you had to purchase a Zanussi washing machine, download an entry form online and post this off with your receipt, completing the tiebreaker: ‘I wash my clothes in a Zanussi because…’
I couldn’t justify buying a washing machine just to enter the competition, but just a week before the closing date my washing machine broke down – surely this was a sign that I was destined to win the Beetle. So off I trotted to Curry’s and bought a new washer on interest-free credit (I figured I could pay for it with the money from the sale of my old Fiesta… yes, I was pretty confident I would win!)
I hadn’t entered many tiebreakers at this point, but I’d learnt from reading winners lists in Compers News and online that 99% of the time, the winning slogan was a rhyme. I didn’t have much time to write a slogan, and I’ll admit this isn’t one of my best, and I wrote
‘…from winter woolies to skimpy underwear, Zanussi technology is programmed to care!’
In the terms and conditions it stated the winner would be contacted by telephone before December 24th. But Christmas and New Year came and went with no news. But there was no winner announced online either, so I held out hope – and indeed, on 10th January I was on my way to Heathrow on a National Express bus when I got a call from Electrolux informing me that I’d won the car! I screamed so loud I’m surprised the driver didn’t crash the coach…
I collected my car at Curry’s in February, and was so excited I didn’t even mind that the PR people made me sit on a washing machine for the photos…
I’m still trying to win another car, and am applying my usual ‘Hard to enter, easy to win’ theory. Two years ago I was in the final 9 for The People’s Reviewer competition to win a VW Tiguan, and turned my loan car into a mobile disco for a week! This however was a dreaded voting competition and I just couldn’t keep up with the leader. Last year I was unsuccessful in the ‘12 Second Strip‘ competition to win a Renault Windster – there were only about 30 entries to win a £16,000 car – I certainly entertained the staff at the Renault garage when I stripped to a WonderWoman costume in their showroom!
Current car competitions
My next plan is to enter the fabulous TomTom Break Free competition. To enter, you have to upload a video of you in a traffic jam (although you can pretend!) singing along to Queen’s ‘I want to break free’ – videos will be judged on creativity, popularity, attitude, presentation and personality. You need to upload a video before 15 September 2011 at the TomTom BreakFree Facebook page. There are quite a lot of entries already but that’s because the competition is open worldwide – from the European entries, the winner will get a Renault Megane and the second place a Clio – the three runners up will get a £1000 flight voucher. Many of the videos look very professional but I hope TomTom will choose videos that are a bit more fun – have a browse through the entries so far and see if you can come up with something seriously offbeat!
In another nice creative competition you can win a Volvo X60 by submitting your ‘greatest drive’ at the Inside Volvo Facebook page. Enter by 3 July 2011. Volvo will shortlist ten drives, then choose the top three which will be voted on to decide the winner of the car. I’ve submitted a lovely drive through Snowdonia from Llanberis to Portmeirion. It looks like many people have chosen similar drives across the UK – perhaps choosing a route in mainland Europe would be a good idea. Volvo will be making videos of their three favourites so keep this in mind – too much motorway driving won’t be very entertaining to watch!
Do you live in Norfolk? Holden Motors in Norwich are giving away a Volvo C30 worth £15,000 – test drive any new or used car there before 31 August 2011 and complete an entry form. They will draw 100 names and you need to attend the opening of their new showroom (date TBC), where one name will be drawn as the winner of the car!
Finally, don’t neglect the simple prize draws – there are thousands of entries but somebody has to win, and for a big prize like a car it’s worth a go! My comp club friend Lorraine won a car in a text competition on egg boxes, and a workmate Emma won a Land Rover in a competition on bottled water – she sent off a piece of paper with her details on for the ‘No Purchase Necessary’ route. You can read a brilliant story over at In the Wendy House about Wendy’s husband bagging her a new Hyundai last year! And as for my friend Marie winning three cars in twelve months, that’s worthy of a blog post all of its own…