1. I generally only enter if the number of entries is under 1000. This usually means I don't enter blog hops.
2. I generally only do a few entries if there are an excessive number of ways to enter.
3. I try to enter giveaways as soon as they come out, or as soon as I find them anyway.
4. I use the re-tweet entry option only if it is something I desperately want or if there are just a few entries.
5. I sometimes skip the "leave a comment on a non-giveaway post" option because it seems I always have to spend too much time searching for one to comment on. Again, if it's something I desperately want, I might do it.
6. And when I do win something, I ask for a confirmation on my reply. There were too many instances where, after six weeks, I inquired about the prize's whereabouts and was told they never received my reply and chose another winner.
7. If I don't receive a prize after 4-6 weeks, I contact the blog owner. If that doesn't work, I post on the website's Facebook page commenting nicely that I haven't received their prize and the person doing the contest was not able to help me. Works like a charm!
I'd like to hear your comments and ideas!
Thanks to those of you who tweet and facebook about contests for an entry and then protect your tweets/posts. It greatly improves my chances of winning. Ha Ha.
Just a suggestion -- when you ask us to pin an image to Pinterest, plase provide the link in addition to the Pin It button. Almost every time I try to do this, when I click on the "Pin It" button, there is nothing there and I don't know exactly what you want pinned!
Please be explicit about when your CONTEST ENDS -- instead of saying "midnight" say 12:01am or 11:59pm or something more precise than just midnight. I never know when you consider "midnight" to take place! Well, Rafflecopter and the other types of entry forms have pretty much solved that problem!
And please be explicit about how you will NOTIFY WINNERS -- is it is by e-mail or do you want the winners to contact you?
That said, I LOVE blog giveaways! Thanks to everyone who hosts them! You are AWESOME.
Oh, and if you ask people to check back to see who won, don't wait a week (or more) to post the winners if they are expected to contact you with their mailing info. Who has time to check back every day for days/weeks?
Are these long, illegible captcha phrases really necessary? Don't the ones where you just check a box saying you are human suffice? Or even the ones where you have to type in the answer to a simple math question or copy/paste something? I HATE CAPTCHA PHRASES! DOESN'T EVERYBODY?
The latest new annoyance is the newish fad of filling in a form and having it tell you you haven't spent enough time on the page. Geesh. I just skip these.
I am REALLY annoyed right now! I contacted not one but TWO blog hosts about a giveaway -- high value prizes -- that I had won about 6 weeks ago to see where they were. They responded that they had to choose another winner because I had not responded within the correct amount of time. NOT. I sent them both a copy of both their e-mails notifying me of my win and my response to it. I responded WELL WITHIN THEIR TIMEFRAME. WTF? Did my mail not get to them in time? Did it go to their spam box? Was the giveaway a phony? This is a good reason to notify winners a second time. There have been instances where winning notifications have gone to my spam mail, so wouldn't the reverse be true? I appreciate the bloggers who do this and also the ones who respond to my e-mail right away telling me they received it and have sent my info to the company. Just venting since these were both prizes I really wanted a lot and now there's nothing that can be done at this point.
Ohhhh, another rant! I won a Visa gift card from someone several months ago. I was going to give it to my daughter for Christmas, but ended up not doing that -- thank goodness. I just kept it. Anyway, yesterday, I went to use it and found out it had never been activated! I don't know who I won it from and it's been too long to rectify it anyway -- but a suggestion -- if you are giving away a Visa/AMEX gift card, keep the receipts for awhile, or even send the receipt along with the card. When I give gift cards to people at Christmas, etc., that's what I do.