How to Host an Online Contest or Giveaway with Our Puzzle Makers

host an online contest

Did you know that many bloggers and business owners like yourself use My Word Search in promotional giveaways? Knowing how to host an online contest with a word search is fun and super simple. Why not try it? Hosting a contest with a puzzle from My Word Search or My Crossword Maker is as easy as 1-2-3.

Now, if you know how to use our puzzle maker and are ready to make your puzzle, go on ahead. In this post, we’ll take you through the steps of making your puzzle, inviting others to solve it, and announcing your winner(s).

How to Host an Online Contest With a Word Search

Step #1: Create Your Own Word Search

First, since you’re making a puzzle for your contest or giveaway, we already know you’re cool, creative, and clever. Now, take it a step further by making it a puzzle that uniquely fits your brand. Here’s how:

  1. Create your word list. Choose words relevant to your brand or the prize. Or, if the prize is a secret or you’re promoting an event, choose words for the big reveal. If you are making a crossword, make sure your fans can easily solve the puzzle or look up the answers, though.

    This is because nothing deters fans faster than an unsolvable puzzle! So, choose clues where the answers can be found on the rest of your website, which will also require customers to visit more pages.

  2. Choose your shape and style. Next, choose what shape you want your word search. You can make it thematic for a contest. For example, if you were giving away a photography session on the beach, you could choose a boat or sunshine. You can also customize with puzzle size, word direction, and font.
  3. Enter your words. Next, all you need to do is put your words in the blanks and the magic of My Word Search does the rest.

Example of Hosting an Online Contest with a Word Search

Remember, your puzzle should make sense for your brand and your giveaway. The British Car Club of Charleston has made several great word searches that fit their product. If there’s a prize involved, make sure the requirements match the value of a prize. The average person won’t want to solve a gigantic word search with 100 words for a $5 gift card, for example. Most solvers would solve a puzzle with a low-level prize just for the fun of it.

Similarly, if you plan to make a big reveal, make sure the puzzle gives the right amount of information. Followers will want to understand the promotion quickly enough to keep solving, but not so quickly that the puzzle is no fun.

#2 Invite Others to Solve It

Now that you’ve made your puzzle, you’ll want to set up your contest and invite others to solve the puzzle.

How to Host an Online Contest

You might view the mechanics of using a puzzle for a contest as your greatest obstacle right now. It doesn’t have to be, though! Again, it’s as easy as 1-2-3.

After you’ve created your puzzle, embed the puzzle onto your website. This, too, is easy to do in five minutes or less. Just use these directions to embed your word search to any page on your website. If you’re making a crossword, you can find similar instructions here.

Third, have contestants send in their answers by using our online submissions feature for both crosswords and word searches. To do this, after publishing your puzzle, click “accept online submissions” to let your customers submit their puzzle.

Promoting Your Contest

Share your puzzle through email, social media, and any other platform you use to connect with your audience. If this contest is just for fun, then you’re done! However, if you’re offering a prize of some kind, remember your timeline as you promote your contest.

For a reveal, you only need to release a puzzle on the reveal date. For example, a musician might share a puzzle when they want to reveal an album release date, upcoming tour dates and cities, and more. Since people will solve it pretty quickly, news will spread.

If you’re using a puzzle as a stand-alone contest, you’ll want to time it around that. Consider who will win. will it be:

  • The first person to solve it?
  • Drawn at random from all entries?
  • Something else?

The first person to solve the puzzle could end the contest in an hour, making for a great social media campaign. If you’re using puzzle entries for a drawing, though, you might want to leave the puzzle up for a while. This will give others the chance to solve it.

#3 Announce the Winners

Finally, this last step is easy and fun! You probably already decided how you plan to award the contestants. Next, all you’ll need to do now is select the winner. Whoever correctly solved the puzzle the fastest will be easy to select. If you’re choosing a contestant at random, you could use a random list picker. Or, if you prefer, you can hand-pick an entry.

Then be sure to announce your winner––that’s the most important part when you host an online contest. At the very least, contact the person who won. You can also announce it on your website and via social media, depending on the nature of your contest or giveaway. It will help you to designate dates for the contest’s beginning, end, and winner from the get-go.

Hosting an Online Contest: Final Thoughts

We’d love to hear from you on how you’ve added a word search or a crossword puzzle to your contests or giveaways. Would you add anything else? What features would help you host a giveaway on your website? Share your suggestions and we’ll add our favorites to this post.

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