Thursday, January 6, 2011

My Giveaway Pet Peeves (Rant)

So I get that everyone is entitled to make the rules for the giveaways on their own blogs, but there are certain things that drive me absolutely crazy when I am entering a giveaway! Here are some of the ones that annoy me the most, in no particular order.

Requiring an email in every single comment.

The only time where I see this as being necessary is when the commenter is posting anonymously. Requiring it in the first comment might be acceptable just in case they are one of the few people who don't have their email in their profile or didn't use some alternate form of contact as an entry (as in Twitter or Facebook). Requiring it in every comment? This just makes me think that 1. You aren't going to bother to check whether if anyone did the mandatory entry or not. and 2. You have to be pretty damn lazy to not be able to click on their name to at least check if their email is in their profile.

Not fixing broken Twitter links.

I'm sure if you are using or have tried out the "new Twitter" you have noticed that when you copy a link it adds some extra digits (/#!) in there which break your link and take you to a page which doesn't exist unless you remove them. It's honestly not hard to remove them, but why are so many bloggers asking entrants to follow their sponsor using these broken links? Don't you check your links to make sure they work before posting?

No links in their post.

This one doesn't happen all too often, but has happened enough that since I was already going on about links I thought I would include it. I'm sure it's an honest oversight, but again brings me back to wondering if you double checked your post before publishing it. Including links, especially when you want entrants to visit your sponsors site and comment, is pretty important. Not to mention that links are the whole point in the sponsors sending their product in the first place!

Asking entrants to comment on sponsors Facebook page.

This isn't just annoying, it's against Facebook's terms and I will most likely skip over this entry and not bother "liking" your sponsor at all unless the prize is pretty amazing. Once again, it's against Facebook's TOS. Enough said.

Captcha codes.

Hate them! Want to know what makes them even worse? Captcha paired with an embedded comment box. Just because it's the default setting in blogger doesn't mean you have to leave it like that. It will take you less than 30 seconds to change it and I bet you will make a lot of readers happy.

Not providing a tweet.

If you are going to include daily tweets as an entry, why not provide the tweet for readers to use. This way you can make sure your entrants are using a quality tweet, and they aren't going to be annoyed by having to write the tweet or shorten the URL on their own. At the very least install a tweet button, like the Wibiya toolbar I have below or one of the many others available.

Restricting all giveaways to US only.

Believe it or not, the Internet stretches farther than the US. If you are shipping the product yourself and aren't able to get to the PO to ship to Canada then fine. If your sponsor is shipping the prize themselves, many of them will ship to Canada and else where. Take the time to ask who the giveaway is open to instead of automatically marking it as US only. I've even seen this on giveaways sponsored by Canadian companies - ridiculous! (This of course does not apply when the sponsor specifies US only.)

Mandatory Entries with 4+ requirements.

I can handle a two part entry, maybe even 3, but some of them are just silly! When your mandatory entry looks something like this: "Visit my sponsor & choose your favorite color of this product AND choose another favorite product PLUS follow both of us on Facebook AND follow me via GFC." Really? Does all of that need to be mandatory? I understand that you want followers, but you will likely still get them if you use it as an extra entry. What about the people who don't use Facebook or who aren't able to access your page? (I have had this happen to me. There are certain Facebook pages that only take me to the Facebook home page.)

I'm sure there are more but this is what I can think of for now! What are your giveaway pet peeves?


renee said...

I agree with everything you said!

Barbara Montag said...

Thank you for such a great post - I agree with all!

Erica best said...

i really agree with u i really hate when they have unlimited tweets on a blog giveaway it so hard to win. one a day it fine by me.

Sweet Panda said...

I totally agree with you! I went to a blog and one of the entry requirement is to follow the blogger on twitter. The link she provided is broken ...

Glogirl said...

You've summed it up nicely! I don't like mandatory entries that require me to "like" the sponsor on FB and leave a comment on their wall. I will often skip over those. I also find it frustrating like you that so many giveaways are closed to Canadians. I find there are a lot of inconsistencies from blog to blog as to who a giveaway is open to. A giveaway could be open to US only or US/CAN or Int for the same company and the same product being given away!

Gina P said...

Amen!! I can't think of anything I'd add because you touched on my peeves too! As far as commenting on sponsor's FB pages, instead of just saying "Misfit Momma sent me" (cause it just makes me feel slimy), I write something like "Your crackers look delicious, can't wait to give them a try. Misfit Momma told me about them". Somehow I feel less like I'm wasting their space and more about their product, while giving the Blogger the mandatory shout out at the same time.

April Yedinak said...

I agree with you on these! I also would like to add that I hate the extra entries for voting someone up on TMB, TBB, Picket Fence, etc. Not only are some of the sites specifically against this, but it feels smarmy to me.

Amy Brown said...

I agree! I read this last night and was thinking what else bugs me...? I think it's when I win and they don't email but rather say, reply to this winning newsletter... And then when I do reply, they don't acknowledge with an email back that they've received my reply!

I don't usually go for the 'write on the FB wall' ones because my boss is my FB friend and I don't need him knowing how much time I'm spending entering contests during the day LOL.

I don't have my google profile set to public because I have to hide from someone who is stalking me (long story) so I don't mind putting my email in my entries, but I would be annoyed if it was accessible and they were too lazy to click through to contact me.

I hate the US only restrictions when the same company is offering us/ca entries on other blogs. It makes me think that blogger is being lazy, and missing opportunities for the sponsor.

Great post!

Jennifer S. said...

Captchas make me insane. Seriously, my blood starts boiling. Especially the ones that pop up AFTER you have already tried to post it. I will leave a giveaway if that is the case.

I will have to start including tweets in mine...I don't always because I have the retweet button that will do it for you, but I should just do it myself.

I also hate when doing something gets you 5+ entries. I do not feel like posting my comment 5 flipping times, sorry. Just make them all 1 or 2 entries.

Great post! Thanks

Tamara B. said...

My pet peeve is the stupid blogger names I won't mention any but come on can't you just use your first name and last name initial :)

Tannis said...

I like the "US only" peeve! I agree... there's more to the world than just the US. And it's probably cheaper for someone from the US to mail something to Canada than is is for Canadians to mail something within Canada! So postage shouldn't be the problem there!

♥Jennette♥ said...

Great post! I really hate the broken links and or no links!

Thanks for visiting and commenting on Smart and Trendy Moms. Have a wonderful evening:)

Unknown said...

Glad I'm not the only one! I have been thinking about writing this post for the longest time but was worried that people would be offended. Looks like I was wrong, thanks for all the comments ladies!

G said...

I'm very new to this but experienced enough to agree with all your comments. I don't like having to give the url for a tweet or FB share; perhaps this is the only way it can be verified. Also, when you are supposed to clink on another link, it should be programmed(?) to open in another tab. In Blogger, I like for the comment box to open in another window and not make you leave the original post. I forget which platform(?) it is, but it will give you an error message that you are entering comments too quickly--especially annoying on the multiple entries. If it's possible not to have to include your email on each entry, I would like that. Otherwise, I use cut and paste alot. I appreciate the opportunity to enter the giveaways and the time it takes to administer them. But they are of value to the blogger as well as the sponsor and should be carefully put together.

Unknown said...

How could I forget about "entering comments too quickly" error! This is in Wordpress, and it annoys me too. I have removed it from my other blog, and will remove it once I switch this one to Wordpress as well.

When I first started blogging, I didn't know how to tell the link to open in a new tab. Now that I know how to do it I add it to nearly every link.

The URL for tweeting and Facebook sharing is pretty important for verifying, although I have let people get away without linking a few times. I get my comments in my email and check them as they come in. When I get a comment that didn't leave the link I check to see if I can find it and mark it down so I don't forget. It really isn't something I enjoy doing, though.

Gingermommy said...

I too dislike
1.Requiring an email in every single comment (if we follow them do they not see our email?)

2.Asking entrants to comment on sponsors Facebook page (this sucks if you entered on more than one blog for the same product)

3.Captcha codes (takes so long, and hardly ever get it right on the first shot lol)

4 Not providing a tweet (I am entering a contest, not wanting to get creative!)

5 Restricting all giveaways to US only (I have unfollowed many on twitterand gfc b/c of this)

So glad to see others dislike these pain in the but entries :)

Anonymous said...

I totally agree!!

You tell em'!

Laura said...

I agree, some blogs make it more and more difficult to enter their giveaways.

My biggest pet peeve are the blogs that have 20 methods of entry and half of those are asking you to sign up for something through one of their affiliate links. It's just tacky to me and turns me off the entire giveaway all together.

I've switched to a simple form to fill out so no ones emails are ever just posted out in the open, i never liked that when I entered giveaways.

Anonymous said...

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Jonnie (JB) said...

I agree with yours and would like to add I hate when they don't mention if it is open to Canada or not and when people want you to follow them on twitter but have "protected their tweets" or whatever it's called.