If you want to know how to win competitions, this Beginner’s Guide to comping should have all the information and links to get you started!
I’ve been a successful comper since 1997 and have won an average of £12,000 of prizes every single year since then – I practise what I preach, and love sharing my tips. The advice and competitions I share at www.superlucky.me have helped my readers win thousands of prizes over the years!
If you’re in a hurry today, don’t miss my popular blog posts:
- top 5 UK competitions to enter right now
- compers shopping list of purchase-necessary comps in the supermarket!
But if you have a little more time, please do read on and let me tell you a bit more about how to get started comping….
What is comping?
Comping is the UK term for entering lots of competitions and prize draws – and if you take on this incredible hobby, you can proudly call yourself a comper. Be warned though – it can be addictive!
But aren’t competitions a scam?
Only a very tiny percentage of UK competitions and prize draws are a scam – in most cases, the promoters really do want a genuine and happy winner! Don’t be a cynic – after all you’ve got nothing to lose, and everything to win. If you stick with the advice on my blog then it will give you the confidence to easily identify and avoid scams, and help you to find and win the genuine competitions.
Before I give you some of the best links to get started entering competitions, take a few minutes to watch my top ten tips for new compers:
Top ten comping tips
1. Be prepared!
When you start comping you will get LOADS of emails, so set up a new account especially for comping – Gmail is a great option. Choose a short, memorable and simple address, as you will have to write, type and spell it thousands of times. It’s important to keep on top of your emails, and setting up rules, folders and flags can help you get organised – check my tips for a tidy inbox.
Set yourself up on social media too – lots of people join Twitter, Facebook and Instagram just to enter the competitions. Consider your username carefully – try not to usehyphens, dots, underscores or random numbers – your name should be memorable, easy to spell and ideally, the same on all platforms.
Most importantly, a new comper needs to be looking for the word WIN everywhere – you’ll find competitions on product packaging, radio, magazines, apps, bus stops, waiting rooms… everywhere!
2. Focus on the prizes you really want to win
If you enter every competition you see, the hobby can become overwhelming. Decide what you want to win and make a wishlist of prizes – from small things like vouchers and tickets to big things like a holiday or a kitchen. If you focus on finding and entering competitions to win those prizes, you’ll find comping more manageable and easier to fit into your busy life! The first step to winning those dream prizes is to find relevant companies on the internet, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter – follow them, like them and join their email lists so you’ll be the first to hear about new competitions. Then, do regular Google and Twitter searches for your prizes – check my tips on searching for competitions on Google.
If you’d like to create a fun comping wishlist bingo card like my 2023 card below, you can print off a simple template and fill it in! Or even better, buy a copy of my BootComp 2023 planner which will help you to focus on the prizes you really want to win!
3. Enter competitions on websites and social media that you trust
It’s best to stick to entering competitions found on the websites, Facebook pages or Twitter pages of companies you trust – if you become uncomfortable that you’re handing over too much personal information, just don’t do it. Don’t get tempted by the big prizes offered on survey sites like MyOffers.co.uk or OfferX. These sites make money from selling on your details and you will get bombarded with spam phone calls and emails. For most prize draws the tick boxes should be optional and you shouldn’t have to agree to receive further information just to get an entry into the draw.
Be careful about clicking adverts when you’re browsing competitions listings sites and forums – especially here on SuperLucky, as I can’t control which ads you are shown. Be careful about signing up to freebie websites – and avoid product testing adverts at all costs!
Check my list of UK competition websites for a guide to the websites you can trust (and the ones which will generate spam).
4. Put in the effort
The majority of people who enter competitions don’t like creative or effort comps, but these offer the very best chance of a win. Tweeting a joke, sharing a photo on Instagram, commenting on a blog, making a purchase, doing a quiz, filming a video – these comps are harder to enter, but because of this, they are much easier to win. In some cases you may well be the only entrant! You can find creative/effort comps posted on the SuperLucky Facebook page, a list of current on-pack promotions on my Compers Shopping List – and the blog giveaways listed on my monthly Blog Comp Linky offer a good chance of a win for just a little effort. Do what you can to make your entry stand out, but for photo and video comps don’t worry if your entry isn’t amazing – these days, most winners are chosen at random, so all valid entries have a chance of winning regardless of quality!
5. Enter local competitions
Finding low entry competitions is the key to winning prizes regularly, and your local magazines, newspapers and shopping centres are perfect – create a bookmarks folder in your browser for their websites and Facebook pages, and check it regularly. Tune in to your local radio stations and check their websites regularly as the text and phone-in comps get very few entries! Think of the places you visit regularly – restaurants, salons, theatres, gyms – then follow them on social media and join their newsletters. Read more tips in my posts How to find local competitions and giveaways, and how to win radio competitions.
6. Read the rules
Yes, it’s boring but it’s also very important to check the T&Cs and read the rules. It’s no good entering a competition that’s already closed, or winning tickets to an event you can’t attend. It’s particularly important to check the details of any competition where you’re putting in time and effort – whether it’s judged or random will affect the amount of time you should spend on your entry. Also check when and how winners will be contacted. You’d be surprised how many new compers miss out on prizes because they’re not regularly checking their junk email, or their Instagram and Twitter notifications. Find out more in How do I know if I’ve won a competition?
7. Make comping friends
Comping can be a solitary hobby – but it’s much more fun to do it with friends! Find fellow compers on Facebook – join my Lucky Learners group! – or search my list of local Facebook groups or local comp clubs in the UK. Many comps on Twitter and Instagram require entrants to tag a friend in order to enter, and asking in a compers Facebook group is the easiest way to find some tagging buddies. Comping friends are fantastic for finding new promotions and they will let you know if they see your name as a winner – they’ll also cheer you up if you’re going through a dreaded ‘dry spell’ without any wins. If you can find local compers to befriend, that’s the best option as you might even be able to share ticket, meal and event prizes with each other.
You can also join a forum like Loquax or Money Saving Expert to connect with other compers. Compers News Chatterbox is my preferred forum, but it’s only accessible to magazine subscribers (subscribe to the magazine and get your first issue for £1 using my affiliate link here).
8. Watch out for scams
As I mentioned earlier, sadly there are a lot of scams out there right now. The most common ones are fake giveaways on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook – these will usually be for technology like iPhones or games consoles. If you see a social media competition without any terms and conditions, check their contact details or bio – is there a website listed? If there’s no website, be suspicious and ask yourself, why are they giving away a prize if they have nothing to promote? On Instagram and Facebook, profile cloning is a problem – scammers will copy a brand’s page and message entrants to say they’ve won, then ask them for payment to secure their prize. You should NEVER have to pay to receive a prize, never give your credit card details – and don’t click the links in suspicious Instagram, Facebook or text messages. Report these dodgy scam profiles and check my posts on how to identify a scam email, scam text message and scam Facebook promotion too
9. Try purchase-necessary competitions
Comping can be a completely free hobby – but there are certain types of prize promotion where you can spend a little money and have a great chance of winning.
Take standard rate text comps as an example – these usually cost you less than 15p. Shops like Tesco and Poundland regularly run these – look out for advertising in store and see my list of current Tesco competitions. Check my post how to win text competitions for tips. But don’t get tempted by the expensive text comps advertised on the national radio stations or TV! For some of these you can enter online for FREE – a SuperLucky reader won £50,000 with her free entries last year. Check my blog post Win cash prizes online in free competitions for current free entry big cash radio comps.
But what about comps in the supermarket? There are so many of them now, and it’s hard to tell at first glance which ones are worth entering. If you’re serious about comping then understanding the terms and conditions and which type of competitions give you the best chance of winning is what you’ll need to learn. Instant win comps where every prize is guaranteed to be won, and awarded after winning moments, are a good bet. If you want to try entering on-pack promotions then check my Compers Shopping list which has loads of current promotions. You’ll also find lots of advice in the Comping Tips section of my blog.
If I’m spending more than £1 on entering a competition, I like to receive a product in return for my investment. Be very wary of raffle websites that charge for tickets to a prize draw – these are a rip off and can turn into an expensive addiction. Read my post about Unregulated competitions leading to huge debt.
If you do decide to enter purchase necessary comps, take photos of receipts and barcodes and check my advice on storing all your paperwork safely.
10. Enjoy the hobby!
Comping isn’t for everyone – and the prizes aren’t guaranteed. Treat comping like a hobby, and then any prizes you’re lucky enough to win are the icing on the cake!
Finally, don’t waste time keeping track of everything you enter – but do keep track of everything you win – use my guide to setting up a prize spreadsheet if you like. It can be a real motivator to look back at all the great prizes you’ve won!