There’s nothing wrong with a fun giveaway every now and then. Everyone loves to try and win a prize, especially when it’s hand-picked by a blogger they like! However, you should know that there’s a fine line when it comes to running giveaways. You don’t ever, ever want your readers to come to your blog and expect a giveaway. If you do want that, you’re better off running a review/giveaway blog instead. People will not read your content. What they’ll do is go to your blog, scan the latest post for a giveaway and if there isn’t one, they’ll leave. That means they spend hardly any time on your site (bad for SEO) and leave without doing anything (terrible for SEO) on your site. What you want to accomplish with your giveaways is to engage your readers, create a bit of buzz about your site and get more people to read your non-giveaway content.
Advertising your giveaway on any site under the sun is not going to accomplish this. It’s going to get you a bunch of worthless followers.
I know, I know, it’s fun (almost addicting) to see your GFC numbers go up, or your Twitter followers increasing, but it’s all about the quality of those followers. If you’ve run a couple of giveaways, you’ve probably seen people enter your giveaways who don’t really have a blog and don’t use their Twitter account. If someone follows you on GFC or Twitter and you can’t find any blog posts or normal Tweets (not about giveaways), they are most likely using a giveaway profile and you will get nothing from their “follows”. What’s the point of gaining a Twitter follower who has NO other followers? Every person that enters your giveaway that way is a total waste. Yes, it increases your numbers, which may make them sexier to present to advertisers, but when they work with you and find out that a low percentage of your followers are actually reading your content, they will not be inclined to work with you again. You don’t want to become known as the blogger who gets no results. It’s better to try and harvest good, quality followers from the get-go.
So, Shabby Apple wants you to give away a gift card of theirs? Fine! Do it! Just don’t give away a $50 Visa gift card on the very next post and a new dress on the post after that. Moderation, people.