It’s a Digital World

February had been a bit quiet on the winning front until today when I received an email notifying me that I had won a $200 Visa card from my photographic entry in the Postcode Portraits competition. Thanks realestate.com.au! Not a lot happening otherwise, but I persist…

So…after scanning a wide variety of competitions for the past few weeks it has finally come to my attention (I can be a bit slow at times) that I need to get a little more techno-savvy. Very few competitions these days (apart from the Puzzles Pages – see last blog post) can be entered into only by mail. Nearly all require an entry via email, SMS, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter (to name the most popular ones there are probably more). I have a desktop computer and a laptop. I recently acquired an android tablet from a friend who got it free through an NRMA promotion. I use it mainly to play Candy Crush, but I digress. Last year I won my Nokia smart-phone. So at least I have enough digital equipment. There are quite a few competitions at the moment offering tablets and smart-phones as prizes so if you don’t already have one of these you could certainly try to win one.

Email is not a problem for me but I have discovered that it is best to have a separate email account to enter competitions with. Mine is with Yahoo but other free servers such as Gmail or Hotmail would be just as suitable. That way you can weed out any spam that might come through (it probably will, as I have discovered also) and keep an eye on your progress.

More and more competitions are now appearing on Facebook (www.facebook.com) pages. So having your own personal Facebook page seems to be a must, it you are really serious. However be warned that most businesses promoting their competitions will require your to ‘like’ their page and perhaps then to ‘share’ it with all your friends as well. As there is likely to be lots of follow up posts it would be best to warn your family and friends in advance or set up a separate Facebook page for competitions only. Of course you can always ‘unlike’ the pages you don’t want feed from, after the competition has ended but then again you might miss out on another one at a later date. While you are on Facebook make sure you have ‘liked’ competitions.com.au to keep you up-to-date and it might also be worth checking out and ‘liking’ EnterComps to follow their listings as well.

I got myself into a bit of bother this morning when I realised that I had to upload my entry into the book Depository bookmark competition onto a Flickr (www.flickr.com) page. Then I discovered it wasn’t really all that hard. I logged in through my Yahoo account and off it went. Problem solved. Easy! Joining Instagram (www.instagram.com) was also relatively straightforward so I am now well and truly prepared now for any more photo competitions.

I’m not so sure about Twitter (www.twitter.com) but I have set up an account in case anything interesting comes my way. I still need to get my head around this one but you never know I might get to like it: I have always like things short and sweet.

As for SMS or phone-in competitions – I don’t usually enter these but if you do (and your fingers can nimbly get around your smart-phone keyboard – mine can’t) make sure you are fully aware of the cost of the call. They are often to 1900 numbers and the cost of the call can be more than you might expect if you have to leave a lot of details. And I don’t like sharing my mobile number to just about anyone.

Sometimes I wish I could go back to the days when all you needed to do was to buy a raffle ticket or put your name and contact details on the back of an envelope. But those days are gone and it’s time to embrace the digital world in which we all now live. Of course the greatest advantage of the internet and the speed with which we can all now connect is being able to instantly access and review all the competitions available to us – like here at www.competitions.com.au.

After working for thirty years as a journalist/historian, Jenny started writing sci-fi for children and adults and occasionally illustrating them (when she was not spending time with her grandkids). Most have been published in The School Magazine, anthologies and online. She has also been contributing to a wide variety of magazines such as Antiques and Collectables for Pleasure and Profit, Australiana and Nurture. Now essentially retired Jenny has taken up a challenge of entering and (hopefully winning) competitions. Jenny will track her journey through this challenge here at www.competitions.com.au.

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