Everytime I win something big I get this flurry of questions. How can I be a winner too? Make me a winner will ya Wendy ’cause. . .
Wendy knows how to win!
It’s March 2009 right? I have won 33 prizes so far since January totally $6,600. Of course, that $5,000 prizes wasn’t too shabby and kind of knocked me up a notch didn’t it. Like I said many times before, I win around 200 prizes a year, give or take. I’ve been consistently doing it for 16 years. I don’t do it by entering every sweeps out there. I win those prizes by focusing my efforts and here’s how you can do the same thing.
Here are the top ten list of things you should do to win consistently:
- Enter everyday
- Enter sweeps that have a lot of prizes
- Enter when less people are entering
- Enter restricted sweeps
- Enter mail-in sweeps with no online option
- Enter short ending sweeps
- Don’t waste your time trying to enter every sweeps out there
- Use a Form Filler program
- Enter sweeps that have prizes you really want
- Never give up!
Number 1: Enter everyday
I know this is not realistic for everyone so I will say, enter as much as you can. You know your schedule and how much time you have to devote to entering sweepstakes.
The gist of this point is that you can’t just go full force one day and enter 100 sweepstakes and then not enter for another week. Pace yourself and enter some every day if you can. I keep my favorites bookmarked on a DAILY list and each day I go back to that list and enter some. Some days I get through my entire list. Other days I only enter a few.
I have a separate list for Instant Win Games. I only play those at o:dark’30 in the morning because that is my favorite time to play those games. That doesn’t mean there are other good times to win IWG because I HAVE won at all times throughout the day.
Number 2: Enter sweeps that have lots of prizes
Why waste your time on sweepstakes with one prize? True, someone is going to win the HGTV House and it might just be you but why enter everyday? I’m not saying that you shouldn’t enter sweepstakes with less prizes. I am saying enter them once, maybe twice and move on. Look for sweepstakes that have 200, 500, 1,000, 5,000 prizes, or 10,000+ prizes.
Yes, the old adage, “someone’s gonna win so it might as well be me” always applies, even with sweeps that only have 1 prize but you are, once again, wasting your time on those sweeps with less prizes when you should spend your time on the winnable sweeps with more prizes.
Number 3: Enter when less people are online
So, when ARE less people online? There are a bazillion (a rank up from a gazillion) people online at all times aren’t there? How are you going to find the times when people aren’t entering. You aren’t! But, there are times you can enter that less people are likely to be entering.
These times include:
- 3 to 5 AM EST (most people are sleeping)
- Major Holidays (Christmas, Thanksgiving, Fourth of July, Halloween)
- Sunday morning (people do go to church so I don’t see a spike in traffic on my site until the afternoon)
- Spring (have you ever heard of Spring Fever. No one wants to be in front of a computer)
- Summer (vacation time)
Number 4: Enter restricted sweeps
Restricted sweeps include those that are limited to certain states or age groups. Other restrictions might be that you must be in the military or a teacher to enter. This kind of sweeps have great odds because you are narrowing down your poll of entrants.
Entering local sweeps, those geared for just your surrounding area or state, have really great odds. I win lots of local prizes each year. I will be writing a long winded post on how to find and enter locals soon.
Number 5: Enter mail-in sweeps with no online option
Mail-in sweepstakes with no alternative way of entering are getting harder to come by all of the time but they are still out there. Search out those sweepstakes and make sure to enter them. As the price of stamps grows ever higher you will find less and less people will enter those. Internet sweeps used to be the hot sweeps to enter because the Internet was so young. Now it is opposite so mail-in sweeps are making a comeback as the hot sweeps to enter.
You don’t have to go overboard on entering either. Ten entries should do just fine. There is no way to know the best way to space them out or if you should just send them all at once because no one has ever proven that either method works the best so just find what works for you. I tend to space my entries out, sending in one a week until the sweepstakes is over or until I reach my 10 entries. My last entry would go out about 7 to 10 days before the due date. Make sure you hand write your entry so you don’t get disqualified.
Using decorated envelopes used to be the “in” thing to do but with modern technology I really think it is a thing of the past for most major sweepstakes. It still might work for local giveaways where the winner is hand-picked by someone working in a local office. For major sweepstakes your entries are either getting put into a bin or the information on your entry card is being immediately put into a computer database so your decorated envelope is useless. If you entry is put into a bin it is not even opened. It is given a number and if the computer chooses that number as the winner they pick that entry out of the bin. The rest are just thrown away so decorating envelopes while fun to do and a cool hobby, is pointless when entering sweepstakes.
Number 6: Enter short ending sweeps
The shorter the sweepstakes last the better chance you have of winning a prize. When a sweepstakes is only held for a week or a month it doesn’t give the sponsor that long to get the word out about it so less people enter. The longer a sweepstakes is posted online and advertised on TV, in newspaper, on Twitter, or in email newsletter, the more chance a friend will tell a friend and so on and pretty soon you have thousands of people entering.
Number 7: Don’t waste your time trying to enter every sweeps
Don’t waste your time trying to enter every sweeps out there. There are literally a gazillion and one, to be exact, sweepstakes out on the Internet at this moment but do you have time to enter all of them?
There are lots of sweepstakes sites out there that post lots of sweeps. All of the other sweepstakes site on the Internet that I know of post every sweepstakes on the face of the earth. Many of them have forums with moderators, helpers, volunteers, and staff to do all of that posting. At Sweeties Sweeps I am a single person posting everything you see on this site so I physically do not have the time it takes to post every sweeps nor would I want to. Because of that I try to find the “winnable” sweeps to post. Some are more winnable than others so I call them Sweeties Picks. The rest are good or better than average. Okay, so occasionally I post a dude so sue me 🙂
My point is, STOP entering every sweeps known to man and focus on The Winnable Ones. Everyone has a limited amount of time for this or any hobby so focus that valuable time on sweeps that have the best odds.
Number 8: Use a Form Filler program
Using a form filler program such as Roboform will speed up the entering process and allow you to enter more in less time. If you only have 15 minutes each day to enter then optimize your time by downloading and installing Roboform.
I wrote an extensive article about Roboform and other form fillers you should read. It will give you all of the details of how they work and what the official rules say about using them.
Number 9: Enter sweeps that have prizes you really want
I keep reading about this lady who has won 100+ prizes since January but her list looks like this:
- bumper sticks
- a rubber wristband
- more stickers
She proudly boasts of your prizes all of the time. I’m happy for her if she’s happy. Maybe she just likes the thrill of the win. I can surely understand that. Believe me – I used to be like that. I entered for anything and everything just to win something. For me now though, those prizes are sheer junk! Do I really want my closet chocked full of useless stuff that I’m not going to use and end up donating to Goodwill at some point anyway? Or, would I rather win less and get things I can really use like a $25 gift certificate so I can eat out, $100 in groceries, a PS3 and Wii, or maybe even $5,000 in cash! Yes, I won all of these so far this year but I HAVEN’T WON A SINGLE RUBBER WRISTBAND!
Man, I crack myself up!
Number 10: Never give up!
No I’ll never give up, I promise – sob, sob – wait, that’s from the Titanic and this is REAL life. Okay guys, this one is an easy one. Anything you do in life that is worth doing well takes a lot of persistence and sheer determination. When I was in the bank the other day getting my paperwork notarized for the $5,000 AMEX I won from BK Sweepstakes I got talking to the ladies in the bank who know I win a lot. A young lady overheard and her eyes got huge and said, “how do you do it?”. So I continued with my story about my wins and how I do this and that and the other thing to win and eventually she lost interest and walked away. Why? She was not willing to do what it takes to win. Most people aren’t so they don’t win and wonder why.
Some of you know I’m not a patient person and I get bored easily. That is why I enter lots of sweepstakes. I may enter 100 sweeps before I win sometimes. If you are not willing to be persistent then you will never win anything. Oh, you might win a big prize once or a T-shirt here or there but you won’t win consistently.
Real winners are persistent and never give up. I have been entering and winning sweepstakes since 1993 – 16 years – and I have the SWAG in my house to prove it. I am still giving my kids stuff they can’t afford and they are all grown now. When they were growing up I would win them bikes and clothes and trips and other good stuff.
We are a middle-class family on a middle-class income, like most of you, and I know you can’t afford to do the things you want to do on whatever you make now. If you are determined to give your family cool stuff and have your kids call you AWESOME (mine still do) then decide now that you will stick with this hobby for the long term and you will definitely see great results!