Nine Notes for Newbies

  1. Don’t dismiss small competitions run through local businesses, charities, church or your local school, playgroup or pre-school. You often have a better chance of winning a prize through them than through the large, well promoted competitions, especially those advertised on television or national newspapers. Also keep you ears open for competitions on your local radio station or through your local paper. They often have great prizes and less people entering them too.
  2. Do your comping at a time during the day or night when you are the most relaxed. You will construct better and more creative 25 WOL answers then and make fewer mistakes when entering your details into forms. If you get stuck you can always get your kids or grandkids to help you with your answers as they are sometimes more creative, snappy and original. It might be serious to you, but to them it’s just a bit of fun.
  3. Take heart if you don’t win all the time. We all have prize droughts, some longer than others. Not everyone wins all the time. That’s life and sometimes it is good to have a reality check from time to time.
  4. If you are unsure about the legitimacy or fairness of some of the competitions that look at bit dodgy, you can always go to their website for confirmation and then do a quick check of the Terms and Conditions of the competition. In fact, make a habit of always doing a quick run through of the Ts & Cs. As for Facebook Competitions, just enter the ones run through apps (these are run on a separate page to the main FB page) or those that require a thoughtful comment or to upload a photo and where you are not required to ‘share’ or ‘tag’ anyone. These are the fairest ones and are more likely to be run according to FB rules.
  5. Work out which types of competitions you are best at (like WOL, photo comps, Instagram or Twitter comps or creative comps) and stick to those primarily. This will concentrate your energies and more likely lead to some success.
  6. Don’t let comping take over your life. Get off the computer and spend some time outdoors in the fresh air and make sure you actually use all the movie, concert or theatre tickets you win or cook up a feast for your family or friends using all the freebies you collect along the way. Enjoy your wins! Don’t forget to take a break from time to time to get refreshed. Comping can be a tiring hobby if you take it too seriously. After a break you are likely to be more energised. Don’t worry about all those comps you might have missed – there are plenty more!
  7. Think carefully before committing yourself to too many voting competitions. They are hard to win without heaps of enthusiastic online friends. There are always plenty of other competitions around – don’t despair.
  8. Take care entering Facebook competitions. Facebook clamps down occasionally on people ‘over-sharing’ or ‘over-tagging’  and are not happy about people operating multiple FB pages, even if they have been created with innocent intentions. Facebook can suspend people or close down their pages at the click of a button.
  9. Don’t be tempted to cheat to win a prize in a competition. Cheats do come to the notice, not only of competition sponsors but also to other compers, who don’t take kindly to them. On Facebook they can easily be reported and shut down and many competition sponsors and public relations agencies managing a wide range of competitions have been known to ‘black-ban’ regularly cheating compers. Keep it fair for everyone and it will be a lot more fun! 

Photo attribution – www.onewaystock.com

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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