Giveaways on the Internet – What, Where, and Why?!

Are Giveaways Worth It?

Occasionally on Facebook and Twitter, I will share links to giveaways I come across and/or enter. I have even hosted a couple giveaways. I realized that some of you may be wondering why, whether these giveaways are worth it, or even legitimate. About that…yes, yes they are. There are a variety of ways to enter these giveaways, but first let me explain something.

Giveaways vs. Sweepstakes

Technically speaking, most of the giveaways you see on the internet are actually legally defined as sweepstakes. Meaning, not everyone who enters will receive something and the winner(s) are chosen at random. Most people have an aversion to the word sweepstakes (thinking rip-off or scheme…) so the commonly used word is giveaway. It fits because something IS being given away, but it is not the legally-defined term. Clear as mud? Yep, like most things the government regulates, it can be confusing. So for this post, when I say giveaways, I mean a random drawing where you might win something if you enter. Okey dokey?

What Can I Win?

Just about anything under the sun. Here is a list of items I have seen given away recently:

  • hair accessories, shoes, clothes
  • books
  • movies
  • CD’s – music, audio books
  • complete homeschool curriculum sets
  • cloth diapers and baby gear (carriers, strollers, car seats, etc.)
  • all expenses paid vacations (You better believe I entered that one!)
  • gift cards to just about everything under the sun (including Amazon)
  • cash – via PayPal or through Visa gift cards (varying from $25 to $1000)

How to Find Giveaways {or Otherwise Get Free Stuff}

  • Twitter & Facebook parties – These are hosted by various groups, brands, or bloggers. Details vary, but for the most part they are simply a set-aside time for everyone to talk about the same topic at the same time. Questions are asked and answered, important announcements are made, and stuff is given away to those who participate. The way you find out about these is through your news feeds. Follow brands or blogs that interest you and they will alert you to upcoming events.
  • Giveaway blogs – Some blogs specialize in giveaways. They run them weekly or even daily. You can find those that are topic specific (like Homeschool Giveaways) or those that are very general (like The Adventures of J-Man and Millerbug). The way you enter the giveaways will vary based on what system the blogger is using, but most are rather simple to enter (because the point is to get as many people to enter as possible…more on that later).
  • Blog post round-ups – Some bloggers don’t host their own giveaways regularly, but have a regular posting of giveaways going on around the blog-o-sphere. Homeschool Survival hosts a link up each Friday where other bloggers can link up their giveaways. It seems a lot of these have moved to newsletter status, a service the bloggers provide to their email subscribers.
  • Deal blogs – These blogs focus more on freebies that everyone can get. They find free resources or “limited-time free” offers from around the web and share them with you. Again, these range from topic specific (like Free Homeschool Deals) to more general (like Money Saving Mom).
  • Pinterest – There’s a board for that. I have my own Giveaways board that I and several friends pin giveaways to. I am also a pinner on a couple of my friends’ Giveaways boards. These are great resources if you don’t want to follow a bunch of people or brands on Facebook or Twitter. Bookmark the boards (or better yet, follow them) and then check them as you have time.

Giveaway Focused Pinterest Boards

Speaking of Pinterest, here is a short list of some great giveaway boards to follow:

Why Do Bloggers Offer Giveaways?

What’s in it for Them?

I’m glad you brought that up. I will be very honest here and say hosting giveaways is a good way to bring people to your blog. People like free stuff. For some bloggers, this is a job. Unless you’ve done it, you don’t know how much time it takes to research, write, and edit good blog posts (not to mention taking photos, making graphics, and then promoting). Most bloggers blog because they enjoy it, but it does take time to create a good blog. How does traffic help a blogger? Well, I will delve into that when I cover affiliate marketing for you all next week. Make sure you don’t miss that (you can get my blog posts sent directly to your email by signing up on the top of the sidebar).

Do You Really Win These Things?

Yes. Here is a photo of items I have won recently. Not included is a registration to Teach Them Diligently homeschool convention because you can’t really take a picture of that. I won these from Facebook & Twitter parties and giveaways on individual blogs. I have won subscriptions to websites (List PlanIt), hair accessories, and a printable planner before, as well.

Are giveaways worth it? Here are few of the many items I have won. Hint: I think they are. ;)

Is it Worth It?

Well, that totally depends on you. If you are spending hours each day entering every giveaway you can find, probably not. If you follow a few places and just enter ones you enter as you come across them, then yes. Most take just a few moments to enter

So that is the basic gist of giveaways on the internet. I would love to answer any specific questions you have about them, too. You can either email me OR leave a comment with your question below. And be sure to follow my Giveaways board on Pinterest!

Follow Vicki Arnold’s board Giveaways on Pinterest.
I’m linking this up to Everything Frugal: The Ultimate Frugal Link-Up because, what is more frugal than free?

 

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Comments

  1. I enjoy having giveaways every month. I have always enjoyed giving gifts. I enjoy entering them too. Thank you for sharing this and I hope you’ll stop by Katherines Corner . I have a giveaway list that is updated regularly.
    Hugs!