How to run an Easter prize promotion

Easter is an exceptionally good time to run a prize promotion. It’s associated with eggs, chicks, bunnies, bonnets, chocolate, crafting, DIY and baking, all of which are rich themes for promotions, and the four-day break and less pressing need to purchase presents mean people have more leisure than they do at, say, Christmas, so they tend to be up for some gentle fun.

Of course, it’s also a religious festival – let us not forget the meltdown last year when the National Trust and Cadbury’s dropped the word ‘Easter’ from some of their egg hunt publicity? –  but, best of all perhaps, it’s an excellent excuse for terrible puns.

As always, if you’re hatching some plans for an Easter promotion you need to decide what you want it to achieve. Perhaps your aim is to improve brand recognition, spotlight a specific product, drive direct sales or build newsletter subscriptions. The objective will determine the format of your promotion and the platforms you run it on. For example, you can use a Twitter promotion to send people to your website to sign up for regular product news, while an Instagram promotion is great for producing user-generated content.

Once you’ve decide on your format and platform, and worked out what prizes you’re going to offer, you need some terms and conditions. Under the CAP Code, which regulates prize promotions in the UK, prize draws must be drawn at random and independently verified, while competitions, which involve some element of skill, need an independent judge. All this has to be detailed in your terms and conditions, along with essentials like the entry mechanism and the closing date.

You also need a schedule for sending out your prizes, particularly if they’re perishable. I was about to say nobody wants a chocolate egg in June, but on reflection I suspect most people wouldn’t mind that much – chocolate is chocolate, after all. However, prompt prize despatch and managing winners’ expectations effectively will definitely improve the way customers feel about your brand.

And if the Easter theme doesn’t quite work for you, spring is – allegedly – on its way so you could pick up on the flowers/warmer weather/cleaning/rebirth/new beginnings story instead. On the other hand, Prince Harry and Megham Markle are getting married in May and a royal wedding is always a good excuse for a prize promotion, as is an international football tournament and you’re in luck, because the World Cup starts in June.

Two points before I go. Firstly – and I give you this vaguely Easter-related fact for free and gratis – there is apparently a global dried fruit shortage at the moment. It’s unlikely to affect the cost of hot cross buns this Easter, but we may see a Christmas puddings price hike later this year. Secondly, I’ve been incredibly restrained and avoided making any awful ‘egg’ puns in this post, but there are four obvious opportunities I deliberately didn’t take. No prizes available, but can you spot them?!

Prizeology would be overjoyed, nay eggstatic (sorry, couldn’t resist), to help you with any or all of the above, from prize sourcing and terms and conditions, through to winner selection, judging and prize despatch. If we can be of assistance, do get in touch.

Sarah Burns is Prizeology’s Chief Prizeologist and a National Trading Standards Scams Team Scambassador. The best address to send her an Easter egg is on the Contact Us page.

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