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Contests & Sweepstakes Tips, Advice, and Questions

FreebiesRGreat 58,150 56,135 June 2, 2008 at 07:50 PM in Other
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Last Edited by BostonGirl March 8, 2015 at 07:18 AM
The intent of this thread is for users, both new and not-so-new, to ask questions, and help with tips/advice. This is not by any means the "gospel". Please feel free to add your words of wisdom, and if you have questions, just ask! If you have a tip that will make sweeping easier for folks, please feel free to share. This is a community effort. We all will benefit in some way.


The Basic Advice/Tips for the new-to-sweeping folks.
Enter for the items you want/need. If you have no interest in trips, avoid the sweeps where the only prize is a trip. If you know you can't afford the tax on a new vehicle, avoid entering for those.

Set up folders in your bookmark/favorites. Create a separate one for each month, and file any sweeps you are interested in into the folder corresponding with when it ends. Then, if you have a day where you're pressed for time, enter at least the ones ending that day.

Play the instant win games.

Follow the rules! If a sweep is restricted to only females, a certain age group, certain states, etc, make sure you fit the criteria! If you don't, move on to another sweep that you do qualify for. Do not create a bunch of email addresses so you can enter something more than once, or so you can play an Instant win game more. The Sponsors can tell, and will DQ you. You're better off playing by the rules than cheating and getting disqualified and having NO entries.

Don't immediately dismiss essay required sweeps (or recipes, photos, etc)....well, unless you know you don't want to write something. A lot of people pass on them, so you might have a better shot at winning something.

Don't expect this to be lucrative enough to become a job. Yes, a lot of us win, and often, but not nearly enough to quit a job!

Expect things to go slow at first. It takes a while for the wins to roll in. But once they do...look out!

Expect to occasionally hit a dry spell. It happens to ALL of us.

DEFINITELY USE YOUR REAL INFO! If you use a fake phone number, and a sponsor is calling to notify people of wins, you'll never know what you missed out on. I, and many others, have been doing this for a long time, and we have no problems with sales calls. Also, use your real name. If your name is Robert or Catherine, using Bob or Cathy is ok, as they are known acceptable shorter versions of that name. if your name is Matilda, and you go by Fluffy, don't use Fluffy. Looking at your ID to get an affy notarized, they may reject it because the names don't match. The sponsor may also say "Fluffy won, not Matilda". So stick with using your real name, or something close to it.

Most of all, HAVE FUN! And don't be afraid to ask questions. We were all new to this at one time. Any one of us would be happy to answer questions.


For easy form filling, check out Roboform [roboform.com]. Google Tool bar and the autofill feature on IE also work well.

For Mac users, the best form filler is 1Password: http://agilewebsolutions.com/products/1Password (thanks javaFlower!)

FireFox Form Filler browser extensions: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/...ll&cat=all

To set up the autofill feature in IE: Click on Tools, then internet options, then choose 'content'. When that pops up, click on "Autocomplete", and make sure to check the boxes for forms and passwords on forms. This is not a good idea if you are on a shared/public computer!

February 17, 2009, 3:10 am: System Notice: This thread has been automatically renewed after reaching a post limit. Most of its content has been moved to this thread for reference purposes.

July 12, 2010, 3:23 pm: System Notice: This thread has been automatically renewed after reaching a post limit. Most of its content has been moved to this thread for reference purposes.

Community Wiki

Last Edited by JD123 November 1, 2014 at 11:13 AM
Before we had this thread, limpstar posted this site for info on sweeps & taxes in the I Won Thread:
All About Sweepstakes Taxes
http://contests.about.com/od/taxe...gtaxes.htm

Also consider talking to your tax preparer and/or researching further into your tax responsibility.


I have found this page helpful in understanding some of sweep's law - a sweeps law co.'s site:
The Lustigman Firm; Attorneys at Law
http://www.sweepstakeslaw.com/
The Lustigman Firm provides experienced legal counsel that helps protect the business interests
of its advertising and promotional clients around the United States and Canada

What does " age of majority in your state or province " mean?

(sometimes abbreviated as AoM+ )

it's the legal age of that state or province...

The Age of majority is the threshold of adulthood as it is conceptualized in law. It is the chronological moment when children legally assume majority control over their persons and their actions and decisions, thereby terminating the legal control and legal responsibilities of their parents over and for them.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_majority

there's a list by country and by US State there....

For most purposes, the age of majority in the U.S. is 18,
except for 2 states with the age of 19 (Nebraska,Alabama)
and one state with the age of 21 (Mississippi)
and two (American Samoa and Puerto Rico) that retain 14 as the age of majority.
Occasionally PA is listed under the 19+ or 21+

~javaFlower

Regarding missing prizes
If you were expecting a prize you've never received you can complain 1st to the sweepstakes administrator, then to the sweepstakes sponsor and finally to USPS Postal Inspectors

https://postalinspectors.uspis.go...laint.aspx

-Kotik


ePrize Contacts
bob.marsh@eprize.com - Bob Marsh, Senior Vice President, Midwest Region, Phone: 248.543.7522
darlene@eprize.com - Darlene Morris, Business Manager, Phone: 248.543.7403
alesya@eprize.com - Alesya Opelt, Vice President, Marketing, Phone: 248.543.7440


Occasionally a....less than ethical sweep will get posted.
You might end up finding unauthorized charges on your phone bill. Unauthorized charges on the phone bill are what's called "Cramming". Once you contact the company that's charging you, and you have requested your phone company remove the charge, if you so choose, you can file a complaint with the FCC.

FCC Online complaint form: esupport.fcc.gov/complaints.htm

You can also file your complaint with the FCC's Consumer Center by e-mailing fccinfo@fcc.gov or calling 1-888-CALL-FCC (1-888-225-5322) voice or 1-888-TELL-FCC (1-888-835-5322) TTY

You can fax your complaint to 1-866-418-0232

Or by snail mail:
Federal Communications Commission
Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau
Consumer Inquiries and Complaints Division
445 12th Street, SW
Washington, D.C. 20554.

I also recommend a 3rd party block on your line to prohibit this from happening. 3rd party blocks don't affect your phone in any way, except by not allowing some company outside of your local phone company from adding charges to your bill.


Slickdealers on Twitter
(I don't really know where is best to start this list, but I decided to just start it here. If anyone thinks we should move it somewhere else, please do so.)

SD name Twitter name
kdka421 k8fenner
Starbelly Lunachique
dodgers77449 michael0902
sanaperv @slicksweepberry
blueeyeleo  
Slickdealers on Facebook
(Hopefully, it is allowed to post this here. If anyone thinks this link should be deleted, please do so.)
You can find the facebook slickdeals sweepers in this group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/310504039006252/

Track incoming packages
UPS
http://www.ups.com/mychoice/
FedEx https://www.fedex.com/login/web/j...n.jsp?TYPE
USPS https://www.usps.com/manage/manage-your-mail.htm




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Once a Thread Wiki is added to a thread, "Create Wiki" button will disappear. If you would like to learn more about Thread Wiki feature, click here.

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#3631
Quote from KMA View Post :
It depends on the types of sweeps you enter. For me the answer is yes, I'm more often notified than surprised with a package showing up at my door. Since a large majority of my wins come from blogs and Facebook posts (the kind where there's no form to fill - you share and/or like and/or comment in the post), they must let me know so I can provide my mailing info (the ones on Facebook do require me to initiate contact with them via private message or email, so I have to check back to see when the winner's name is announced). There are so few that I've been surprised by - one would have been a surprise had my friend not seen the names announced on Facebook and shared the post with me. Looking at my spreadsheet for this year's wins, of my 44 wins only 2 were complete surprises.

thanks
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#3632
I received my corrected 1099 form from eprize. I was VERY surprized that it came so quickly
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#3633
UPS delivery notice from sender NORDSTROM 236 OUTBOUND - does this look familiar to anyone? I remember entering a couple of Nordstrom sweeps (the wedding one on Pinterest with daily entries and one where you review a product on their site), but one didn't require an address and I don't know if the other one did. Does anyone remember another Nordstrom giveaway that might have included a form to input a mailing address?
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#3634
Sorry if this has been discussed. My last four or five wins have all been from one entry sweeps. I have a friend who has been sweeping for years and he tells me he's never won a one entry sweep. What is everyone else's experience? Do you do better with the daily entries or the one entry ones? I'm about to give up on the daily ones as I'm not winning and don't have the time to enter every day, thus my odds go down and it seems like a waste of time. ESP when so many daily entries give away one prize. (Like women freebies, I must laugh when they make a daily sweep with a $5 GC....but I digress...)
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#3635
Quote from heyjupiter View Post :
Sorry if this has been discussed. My last four or five wins have all been from one entry sweeps. I have a friend who has been sweeping for years and he tells me he's never won a one entry sweep. What is everyone else's experience? Do you do better with the daily entries or the one entry ones? I'm about to give up on the daily ones as I'm not winning and don't have the time to enter every day, thus my odds go down and it seems like a waste of time. ESP when so many daily entries give away one prize. (Like women freebies, I must laugh when they make a daily sweep with a $5 GC....but I digress...)
I've won a lot more single entry sweeps than daily entry sweeps. The best ones are the single entry with a lot of prizes, you have better odds of winning something and you have the same odds as everyone else. I have won plenty of daily entries, but not nearly as many as the single entry. The ones that I hate are the Facebook sweeps that give you one or more additional entries for referrals, you know that there are people out there with multiple Facebook accounts referring themselves and/or posting referral links on this and other sweeps sites, and I've seen some sweeps that give you as many as 20 additional entries for each referral. Every time I enter one of those and see the referral link after entering, I know my odds of winning just went down exponentially.
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#3636
Quote from heyjupiter View Post :
Sorry if this has been discussed. My last four or five wins have all been from one entry sweeps. I have a friend who has been sweeping for years and he tells me he's never won a one entry sweep. What is everyone else's experience? Do you do better with the daily entries or the one entry ones? I'm about to give up on the daily ones as I'm not winning and don't have the time to enter every day, thus my odds go down and it seems like a waste of time. ESP when so many daily entries give away one prize. (Like women freebies, I must laugh when they make a daily sweep with a $5 GC....but I digress...)
Another one of my "it depends" answers. But honestly it depends on a few variables; your best chances with those are:

1. When held on sites, like blogs or Facebook posts, with low-exposure, so fewer entrants with which to compete. For instance, today I won from a blog that was single-entry. One requirement was to like her on FB - she has less than 200 likes.
2. When the entry period is short - that goes without saying: the longer the entry period, the more likely it will have a large number of entrants.
3. When held on less popular (for sweeping) social networks like Pinterest and Instagram and even Twitter. It's only been since November that I've been entering daily and for several hours each day (with the exception of my current hiatus) and of my wins last year (within a 2 month period) I won once from Pinterest and twice from Twitter with single-entries.

Looking at my wins from this year (1/1 through today), of the 45+ I've won (I've recorded only 45, because I skip wins like wallpaper), at least 15 were from single-entries. Here's the breakdown:

Single entry from blogs/Facebook posts that lasted 24 hours or less - 5
Single entry from blogs/Facebook posts that lasted greater than 24 hours - 8
Single entry from one posted here that lasted less than 24 hours - 1
Single entry from one posted here that lasted a week - 1
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#3637
Quote from ChrisB65 View Post :
I've won a lot more single entry sweeps than daily entry sweeps. The best ones are the single entry with a lot of prizes, you have better odds of winning something and you have the same odds as everyone else. I have won plenty of daily entries, but not nearly as many as the single entry. The ones that I hate are the Facebook sweeps that give you one or more additional entries for referrals, you know that there are people out there with multiple Facebook accounts referring themselves and/or posting referral links on this and other sweeps sites, and I've seen some sweeps that give you as many as 20 additional entries for each referral. Every time I enter one of those and see the referral link after entering, I know my odds of winning just went down exponentially.
Thanks for your reply. I had (key word HAD) a lot of sweeping buddies on FB that I sent referrals to, but never won any of those referral sweeps. (Yes i need to changd my siggy... i dont do the referral thing on fb anymore). Somehow I think that all my referring was doing was getting a lot more people to enter and not really helping my odds overall (yes these were sweeps posted here on SD but most of my sweeping buddies were found elsewhere and weren't SD regulars, and based on who liked what FB page, my guess was that a lot of the sweeps posted here arent getting posted on other sweeping sites.). I think at the very least I need to cut my daily entries waay down. I love sweeping, it's just that it becomes a drag when I must enter every day and if I don't, whoops there go my odds... Plus I got hooked when I had a lot of downtime.... Now, not so much lol
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#3638
Quote from KMA View Post :
Another one of my "it depends" answers. But honestly it depends on a few variables; your best chances with those are:

1. When held on sites, like blogs or Facebook posts, with low-exposure, so fewer entrants with which to compete. For instance, today I won from a blog that was single-entry. One requirement was to like her on FB - she has less than 200 likes.
2. When the entry period is short - that goes without saying: the longer the entry period, the more likely it will have a large number of entrants.
3. When held on less popular (for sweeping) social networks like Pinterest and Instagram and even Twitter. It's only been since November that I've been entering daily and for several hours each day (with the exception of my current hiatus) and of my wins last year (within a 2 month period) I won once from Pinterest and twice from Twitter with single-entries.

Looking at my wins from this year (1/1 through today), of the 45+ I've won (I've recorded only 45, because I skip wins like wallpaper), at least 15 were from single-entries. Here's the breakdown:

Single entry from blogs/Facebook posts that lasted 24 hours or less - 5
Single entry from blogs/Facebook posts that lasted greater than 24 hours - 8
Single entry from one posted here that lasted less than 24 hours - 1
Single entry from one posted here that lasted a week - 1
How do you go about finding decent blog contests? I refuse to enter the rafflecopter ones that give you a ton of entries because its not worth my time when there are over 200k entries for one prize. (And it seems that a lot of blogs use rafflecopter)
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#3639
Quote from heyjupiter View Post :
How do you go about finding decent blog contests? I refuse to enter the rafflecopter ones that give you a ton of entries because its not worth my time when there are over 200k entries for one prize. (And it seems that a lot of blogs use rafflecopter)
I don't even bother with the ones that require too much for one-item giveaways. I don't mind rafflecopter as long as you don't have to like/follow 10 different Facebook/Twitter/Pinterest accounts. Frown In fact, I like that I can tweet daily (tweeting, pinning, etc.), because my belief is that the average blog-reader doesn't remember to enter again.

A good way to find blogs is to follow your favorite companies on FB and/or Twitter. When they partner with a blogger to do a giveaway, they often post about it. I now follow some pretty interesting bloggers who offer posts that appeal to me. One of my recent wins came from a blog I'd followed as a result of such a giveaway. While I didn't win that initial giveaway, I was interested enough to keep the blog in my feed and I ended up winning another giveaway from there.

You can also do searches of items you'd like to win. For example, I came across a line of skincare that I wanted to try; it was being given away on a blog. I went to Twitter and did a keyword search of that line and found other bloggers doing giveaways of this same line. I ended up winning one of those giveaways - it had a lower number of entries than the one that I'd first encountered (the one that led me to seek out other such giveaways). The value of that was $530.

ETA: beware of blogs that are review-based. Those are in the business reviewing products and then giving away those products; they're highly advertised, have lots of entrants, require a lot of actions (liking/following, etc.), and often partner with other such bloggers. You don't have a snowball's chance in hell for those. The best blogs are ones that have the occasional giveaway, but giveaways aren't their main reason for blogging; those have fewer entrants and less "professional sweepers" following them.
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Last edited by KMA February 24, 2013 at 01:35 PM
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#3640
Quote from KMA View Post :
I don't even bother with the ones that require too much for one-item giveaways. I don't mind rafflecopter as long as you don't have to like/follow 10 different Facebook/Twitter/Pinterest accounts. Frown In fact, I like that I can tweet daily (tweeting, pinning, etc.), because my belief is that the average blog-reader doesn't remember to enter again.

A good way to find blogs is to follow your favorite companies on FB and/or Twitter. When they partner with a blogger to do a giveaway, they often post about it. I now follow some pretty interesting bloggers who offer posts that appeal to me. One of my recent wins came from a blog I'd followed as a result of such a giveaway. While I didn't win that initial giveaway, I was interested enough to keep the blog in my feed and I ended up winning another giveaway from there.

You can also do searches of items you'd like to win. For example, I came across a line of skincare that I wanted to try; it was being given away on a blog. I went to Twitter and did a keyword search of that line and found other bloggers doing giveaways of this same line. I ended up winning of those those - it had a lower number of entries than the one that I'd first encountered (the one that led me to seek out other such giveaways). The value of that was $530.
Thanks for the tips.
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#3641
Back from College Gameday in Lexington (spent 14+ hours on the road)...you might think that is unrelated to contests. For the most part that is true. However, I did spend the two $50 shell gas cards I won from facebook sweeps. Also, I spend my choice rewards points from the Holiday Inn promo for a FREE nights stay. Saving $250 really helped make things happen.
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TIP:
Did you know people have won over $30,000 in prizes from sweeps I've directly posted? If you have the time to do so, please give back by posting sweepstakes you see. This site is largely community driven. We are grateful for the volunteer work of others. heart
#3642
Quote from angelsolo3 View Post :
Does anyone believe in good karma for posting contests? I have not won anything yet this year. I did pretty well last year and the year before. I have really increased posting sweeps (mostly for things that I really want!). Many of these are somewhat obscure that maybe people would not find without my posting it. Sometimes I want to keep them to myself but I never do because I hope the contest karma will pay off. Is it common to see smaller sweeps and not post them if you want to win them badly yourself? I'm not planning on doing that because I still hope it will pay off...

Happy sweeping!
I don't have to worry about that usually because I'm always amazed at how fast sweeps go up on here..sometimes I find one that's just started and get excited to post it only to come on here and find someone posted it days or weeks before I try (haha) They must have psychic sweeps ability or something!
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"It's never too late to have a happy childhood"-Tom Robbins
#3643
Quote from halah2272 View Post :
I don't have to worry about that usually because I'm always amazed at how fast sweeps go up on here..sometimes I find one that's just started and get excited to post it only to come on here and find someone posted it days or weeks before I try (haha) They must have psychic sweeps ability or something!
I agree! I always feel like I have found a great one and it has been up for hours already.
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#3644
Quote from robonero954 View Post :
Has anybody won a MyCokeRewards Sweepstakes? (not instant win). If so, how long did it take for you to receive your prize?
Pretty sure you can track your MCR prizes on the web site. Click on your account and look under "Current Sweepstakes" or "Wheres My". I don't have that option, but I have not won anything lately. When I was expecting something, it was there. You have to bring up the month and year it was won as it is listed monthly.
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#3645
I want to cry, internet was down from 10:30 last night unti now...I'm so behind. Darned snow.
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