For those of you who haven't heard of it, I'd like to introduce you to Bluefly.com. Bluefly is a commerce site selling top designer goodies like Marc Jacobs, Prada and Vera Wang at deep, deep discounts.
Today I want to talk about STICKY SWEEPSTAKES. Not really a sweeps gal, I have been surprised to find myself as an addict of the Bluefly sweepstakes. They run these 3 or 4 times a year, and the build of these sweeps is simply one of the best examples of great usability you'll find on the web. Check it out for yourself, but here are a few of the key practices that they employ that absolutely every ecommerce manager should know and model:
- Give 'em what they really want
The first thing that they do really well is tap into what their core users really, really want - free high-end merchandise. Take the current sweeps running today, every day someone wins a $1000 shopping spree on the site - with the deep discounts that's enough for a fabu Marc Jacobs bag or pair of Jimmy Choos. Yipee!
- Make it fun
After logging in, the sweepstakes is always based around a totally fun and easy flash mini-game. The current one is on a fishing model, but past games have included the balloon toss, throwing darts, and fishing for Versaci in a jam-packed treasure trunk. They make it fun and anyone can play.
- Reward engagement
In addition to the grand prize, they also always offer secondary prizes that keep you feeling like the BIG win is just around the corner. For example, 10% discounts on shopping, Bonus Plays, and other digital goodies that provide a feeling of accomplishment.
- Encourage world of mouth
And for those shoppers who just can't wait another day to enter, you get an extra play for 'telling a friend'. A great way to make it viral and expand your audience.
- Once you've got 'em, keep 'em
After you've played for the day, you then get dropped into a 'Thanks for Playing' page. But it doesn't just thank you, it leads you to 'Shop Now' with photos and links to the hottest products. If you can keep them in the site, they're more likely to spend. Isn't that why you invested in a sweepstakes in the first place?
- If you lose 'em, invite them back
Next, they offer a feature that will send you emails to remind you when to play -but ONLY if you ask for it. The wording of the Opt-in is brilliant: "YES! I GOTTA WIN THIS! Send me an e-mail every day!" It's a great way to drive you back to the site. And if they don't hear from you for a while, they will send you an email invitation to come back to the site for more - often with an additional 10% off code to keep make it hard to ignore.
- And finally - you don't always have to SELL to sell
It's all about the positioning. Bluefly really understands their audience and positions their site and sweeps as 'we're just like you'. Take their tagline... "the ultimate hook-up for the fashion obsessed". It's the perfect spin. This is reinforced with their 'fun' take on sweeps, and also an awesome blog with an inside look at the fashion world. Positioning your brand wrong can be the kiss of death, but when you do it right - like I believe Bluefly does - it can make the entire experience fun and exciting.
You don't have to be into fashion to appreciate this experience. How could you implement these practices in your own promotional efforts?