How to Run a Successful Giveaway!

My last post was about My March Madness Giveaway! Thank you if you entered! The winners were notified personally and in my last newsletter! I had a great time! And I promised I would let you know some things I feel you need to run a successful giveaway. So here goes!

Choose a Prize for Your Giveaway – This may seem obvious, yet I think there’s a skill to it. Choose something or things that will be valuable to your audience. Valuable enough that your audience will want to win what you’ve offered.

Decide on the Outcome You Want and Where Your Results will show up best– For me, I wanted to increase the number of folks who receive my Newsletter! I try to do this newsletter once or twice a month. It’s full of tips you can use in your ‘Cottage Industry’ , small business and more.. And, that’s where the Details for my Giveaway appeared! That and some posts on Instagram.

Best Tip: Make sure you make the Entry to your Giveaway, easily achievable– and I have to add this, please, please value every email address you have! Folks don’t give those away lightly- we’re already overwhelmed as it is! Right?

Choose Which Social Media Platform(s) you’ll Use for Your Giveaway I used my Blog- right here! which automatically posts to several social media sites! I promoted it on my Blog and the other social media site I used regularly was Instagram. Why? Well, it’s my favorite along with this blog, yet I think Instagram is the best social media platform for me to use right now, and some think Giveaways are more successful on Instagram and Facebook. Of course, use the best platform for yourself- where you have the most growth and interaction.

Decide on Length of Time for Giveaway I ran my giveaway for 10 days.. personally I think this may have been too long- though I was going by a statistic that only 4% of your audience even looks at your posts daily. So, that guided my decision on how long to run the giveaway.

I’ve seen two giveaways lately- one for a Travel Sitewith lots of prizes and their’s lasted a Month! It was highly interactive and frankly too much trouble for the average product or service giveaway. The software alone would take a major amount of time to create is you’re running your business mostly on your own. Another Giveway I saw was a 1:1 with two major retailers who joined forces and offered this! They were Mickey Drexler and Bobbi Brown. This giveaway was for? 5-7 days.

What will be Your Entry ‘Fee’?Be sure to list the Rules for your Giveaway– As I said before, my Entry ‘Fee’ was to sign up for my Newsletter! Yours could be an actual product you sell, it could be a coaching session, a PDF with valuable information. It could be a short video training… just make sure it’s Good Enough that folks will really want what you’re giving away!

Why sign up for my Newsletter? Well.. I’ve been giving out Marketing Tips for well over 2 years! And, with a 70% plus open rate- you may want to add it to your reading list! Also, when I did the giveaway, I wanted to reward my existing newsletter subscribers! That’s coming up soon- If you sign up- well, you’ll get the Bonus too!

Tip: Make it Easy! Mine was very easy- I have a Sign Up Form that is linked on my Instagram and I put links where my blog was posted and I’m very happy with the results! Here’s my link again:Sign up for my Newsletter! I hope you’ll sign up for mine!

here’s that link again;

You will need to Plan Your Posts! Blog, Newsletter, Social Media This is important! When you decide to do a Giveaway- Plan plan plan! Plan the Images, Plan the Wording of the Giveaway (mine were actually done in a Quote Format, Plan your Content. Send out multiple reminders- for me this meant sending out additional emails. It also meant doing the posts in different formats- I wrote a Blog post, I wrote a Newsletter, then sent out an ICYMI repeat of my newsletter, I did at least 5 posts on Instagram and multiple Stories, even a Reel or two! It wasn’t hard to plan, yet I realized that the preparation for it- made it easier while the Giveaway was running.

Choosing Winners isn’t Easy. This was perhaps the most difficult part of the Giveaway for me. So? What can you do to alleviate the stress of it? I had some input from someone I trust. I also ‘gave points’ for the Enthusiasm level for the contest or what their response was to a certain gift I was giving away! And.. I also gave points for folks who shared my giveaway to their Instagram Stories or shared a post I had done about it. Because after all, that speaks to how much they value their community and the prizes they needed or wanted!

Contact Winners, they may or may not Accept the Prize Before I ever awarded the prizes, I had narrowed my ‘winners’ down, some categories had several people who had earned the ‘points’ yet, and this is a Big Yet- Would they accept the prize if it was offered? Because let’s face it- it they don’t want the prize- it’s not really helpful to you and for sure puts that person in a bad situation, if their name is announced and they just can’t accept it because of personal or professional situations that just aren’t right at the time of the giveaway. Be sensitive to that- I think this part is important.

Where will you Announce the Winners? I chose to announce my winners through my newsletter because that was the way participants entered the contest. I also sent that out twice because there were a few that had signed up yet for some reason, the newsletter bounced or even may have gone to their spam boxes if the newsletter was new to them. I also followed up with the winners through a private direct message.

Check Your Results! This might be the most important part of the Giveaway! Did you achieve what you wanted the giveaway to achieve for you? I checked my analytics. I had gained subscribers to my newsletter! I was actually amazed to see it in black and white. And… the newsletter has grown even more since the the giveaway has ended? Why? Well, it’s because I had told my loyal newsletter winners that they would also Win? Whether they won a prize or not, I will be giving them something special through my newsletter- (a link to this blog post for one thing) and a short video training and PDF that they can download!

So! Do I recommend doing a Giveaway? YES! I hope you’ll try it, and I’d love to know how it goes!

Love y’all, Brenda

Is it Madness to Run a March Giveaway?

Okay, maybe. Yet, I don’t think so! I think having Giveaways all year round work! I’m preparing a March Madness Giveaway starting next week! I’ll tell you more about it, but first…let me tell you a bit about Giveaways for your own business.

Giveaways have always been a good marketing idea. Why? Folks love Free Stuff. Folks love Free Samples. Folks love the Idea of Winning Things. Free Gift with Purchase? Still works. Buy One Get One, yep, that too. I love all of that myself!

So many successful business owners started out Building their Brands giving away their products or services. Just in the last few weeks, I’ve read about relatively new businesses which over and over again said something like this:

‘We gave lots of our products away in the beginning and still do to boost Brand Awareness.’

Why would they do this? They want and need Reviews. They want and need Suggestions for how to make their products better. They know that these new folks will often share the news with their friends. Brand Recognition is always a smart thing to do!

Even, as their business grows. Successful Businesses do some type of Giveaways. Why? They want and need to Create a Buzz, by Attracting New Audiences, Reaching more Viewers. Giveaways do this almost immediately. These new audiences who participate in Giveaways are more likely to become customers in the Future. That’s what the experts call- Brand Loyalty. Are you convinced? I hope so. In the next blog post, I’ll share my best advice on how to run a Giveaway…

Here’s my March Madness Giveaway! *and no, it doesn’t have anything to do with basketball! I’ve done giveaways for decades when I worked in Retail for 30+ years! I’ve done Giveaways since I published my online course last year. I started with a belief in what I could share with others. I also began with the commitment to give away my course from time to time, for all the reasons above but mostly because the idea was born during the pandemic when folks were in danger of losing their businesses or jobs.

So! Here’s what’s in the March Madness Giveaway!

  • 5 Complete Course Giveaways! Value? Almost $200 each!
  • 4 Instagram Grid Upgrade Suggestions- *this is your Virtual Shop Window!
  • 3 Instagram Bio Upgrade Suggestions- *this is your worldwide Business Card!
  • 2 One on One Coaching Sessions with me- *a $75 value each
  • 1 Grand Prize- This is a Complete Course with the Choice of a Coaching Call or Both the Grid Upgrade and Bio Upgrade

And, I’m not leaving out those folks who have already gone through my online course- ‘Be Unforgettable- Beginner’s Guide to Visual Marketing’ – they can notify they’ve taken the course and they will automatically be entered for a Grid or Bio Upgrade or to Be Featured in the updates I’m doing to the Course! There may be more prizes – hopefully for anyone who enters! Stay tuned…

So how do you enter: Sign up for My Newsletter! That’s the only entry required! Folks already on the list will be entrants and the Winners will be announced through the Newsletter too! I hope you’ll take me up on this.

That’s It! The Giveaway begins March 20, 2023 and ends March 30, 2023! So I hope you’ll sign up and get All the Details!

And, Good Luck on your own Giveaways- coming up next blog post will be How to Run a Successful Giveaway!

As always, love y’all, Brenda

That’s It! *not sure how those big blocks got there 🙂

Brand Ambassador or Not?


My Newsletter went out this week, lots of marketing and social media advice. If you haven’t signed up and you’re a writer, creator, artist or small business or a dreamer who’s thinking about it, I’d love to have you there! The first thing we talked about was the Super Bowl! Yep. I’m pitiful when it comes to understanding the rules of football, but I sit up and take notice of the Ads!

Let’s get down to the marketing part of the Super Bowl. Research has shown that last year’s 30 second Super Bowl ads cost an average of $7 million each! And from working in Retail, I can tell you that $7million that Big Brands spent doesn’t include the production of the Ad! Think of it! For a mere 30 seconds, albeit a highly rated and viewed event, that’s an amazing amount of money! Last year’s Super Bowl was said to be viewed by 112 million people!

Still. In contrast, there are Social Media Brands that generate of 350 million views! I know most of us don’t generate that kind of audience. I sure don’t. Yet, the good news here is that

Big Brands are rethinking where and how to spend their Ad dollars. Big Brands are looking for:

  • UGC– that’s user generated content. I know I had to look up when I first saw it!
  • They are looking for Reviews they can use- which can add to your audience views too!
  • Big Brands are also looking for folks who have an Engaged Audience, not necessarily a sizeable audience.
  • Big Brands will also connect with some folks who will do Sponsored Posts.
  • And, they will often use Brand Ambassadors! These are folks who work with them on contract.

All of those types will get exposure for their own sites. Quite often they will offer to provide you with a product for doing a Sponsored Post. This is the most common. If you have a highly Engaged Audience (yes, they notice!) They may offer you a paid Sponsorship. For this: Some brands like food photographers, food stylists, even Lifestyle stylists and photographers the same thing. And let’s not forget Travel Bloggers with a Social Media component. Paid or Product is generally the compensation offered.

I personally don’t use sponsored posts, though I have in the past. I also don’t allow ads on my site. Why? Essentially, there’s no control of the advertisement and I just didn’t think ads for ‘Fatty Liver Disease was appropriate with a Recipe! Another thing, it’s never paid enough. Some folks really work this angle and my hat is certainly off to them! Here’s what I can tell you for sure! Agencies are looking for folks just like you! When my blog focused mainly on Lifestyle, I was contacted by a New York Ad Agency– yes! I checked them out and so should you! I spoke with a very nice lady too. The agency asked me to do sponsored posts for a Stationary Company- it was a product for post agreement. I did a few and honestly? At first it was worth it because I use paper stationary thank you very much! They transitioned to an Online Only Stationary Business and I just wasn’t interested in that. It was a wonderful company, just didn’t fit in with what I use.

Then, this same ad agency contacted me about sponsorship for using a plug in for Recipes- this would generate a grocery list for the Name Brand Products I used in the recipes. I tried that as well, because there were some significant Name Brand businesses who were doing it too. Honestly? The plugin cost about $99 to use on this platform, ultimately it just wasn’t worth the cost and revenue for my particular audience. That doesn’t mean it won’t be for you! It was very flattering yet also a bit too much trouble to do every. single. time.

I say try out brand sponsorships and see if they work for you! Here’s an interesting side note- I posted a photo of Camellia’s Cheese Straws from my blog to Instagram. I received a Direct Message from a major Brand asking if they could use that photo. I agreed. There was No compensation. There was exposure and that company location in Los Angeles still follows my account. That! was definitely worth the exposure for me! Still is, as a matter of fact.

Okay, that was my experience 4-5 years ago. Now? The trend is continuing in an even bigger way! If this is something you’d be interested in exploring- you may want to check it out. How? Do a post and give the Name or Social Media Handle or Product Link, you never know- they may like what they see and love your posts. Make sure those posts are Unforgettable. (I can teach you how) Some also do what’s called Media Kits and approach brands that way too. Just make sure what you’re doing is absolutely gorgeous and absolutely does make their products look amazing!

Being a Brand Ambassador Depends on What you Do.

One Big Social Media Brand- they are Marketing Coaches yet there is also an element of Wellness in what they do.. They say they receive Passive Income from sponsored product-based brands too. They aren’t salesy about it at all. Mainly, they just show a short video opening the box of products! Yes, that’s All. This company considers being Brand Ambassadors is a ‘white space‘ that has opened up in the marketplace. Why? simply this: Big Businesses know where the audiences are, they know that…let’s say- Super Bowl sized ad budgets don’t go as far toward real authentic sponsored posts by even smallish social media influencers when it comes to promoting their products or services.

This Marketing Trend is good news for small to medium size social media sites- small businesses, coaches, product or digital based businesses.

Why? Well, Big Business knows these folks have truly engaged people who read and listen. Also, folks are weary of doing business with Big Brands that don’t always have good customer service. Today’s marketing trends toward the consumer actually Knowing, Liking and Trusting small businesses. Consumers want Real Connections! If that’ You, remember this- you must treat Social Media for what it is. Social. You must treat folks like you’d want to be treated. Work on that Know. Like. Trust factor. Become a Trusted Resource. Show up as You. Show your workspace, your hobbies, your process. And the best Tool you have? is You. Unforgettable You! Happy Valentine’s Day! and don’t forget..

Love y’all, Brenda

If you’d like to receive my Marketing Newsletter– send me an email! I’ll add you to my list! My email is;

Join over 500 visitors to my Free Be Unforgettable Pro Tips Masterclass! Here’s the link:

You don’t have to Know Everything to get Where You Want to Go…


Is January over? Wow! That went by fast! I hope you’re doing well and the New Year is kind to you already. Here? It’s been sort of crazy, the kind of crazy that’s left me feeling grateful, anxious and my inner perfectionist reared its head several times. Basically, I believe that Procrastination has its roots in Perfectionism, I’ve felt stuck, and overwhelmed more than once! Not to mention a few other personal things going on- that needed to be seen about!

Anyway… first of all, to those Mentors who’ve made wonderful suggestions- thank you and please know- that my high anxiety and perfectionism delayed implementing your suggestions! Getting back on track now!

Now- the Gratefulness has to be told! I put out a Free Pro Tip Masterclass and! Almost 300 have checked it out! Unbelievable for me. Why?

Well, the first announcement was sort of crazy. I didn’t like the way it looked- not my style. Then, I did another one… Yikes! I misspelled the word Marketing– ha! Ditch that one! I redid it and that one has been deemed Ok. However, the Pro Tips Masterclass had been released in Beta Format and to be honest- to me? It just wasn’t pretty. Ok I cried. A little. Now, the Masterclass has been redone and if you’ve gone through it (thank you!)

Still. If you signed up before last Friday January 27- you may want to go through it again! You have unlimited access!

Now, about that Quote- I used it almost 4 years ago! Someone new to my site- took the time to read it, I thought – ‘Maybe I need another look at it too! ‘

You don’t have to know Everything to Get Where You Want to Go’

Brenda Wyatt

Here’s part of the post-

‘Life is my favorite adventure! And the beauty of it is this- ‘You don’t have to know ‘everything’ to get where you want to go.’


A Caterpillar has a good plan… Eat all the Leafy Greens you can without knowing how to spin a Cocoon, until the time comes to attach itself to a stick and bit by bit- spinning a Cocoon seems the most natural thing in the world!

The Caterpillar does all it knows to do- living its purpose, without knowing one thing about Flying!

The Cocoon knows nothing about Color Schemes, flight engineering or spreading it’s wings- living in cramped quarters and all…

The Cocoon might look like it’s just hanging around, not doing much of anything- yet inside- an amazing transformation is taking place!

There’s always the struggle to do more, be more than the Caterpillar ever dreamed or planned. The Cocoon looks like it’s doing nothing- It’s all happening in the Dark!

Ultimately the Cocoon’s shell cannot hold the Butterfly back as it’s Life’s Plan unfolds… Without ‘knowing everything’ the Butterfly Soars! A Flower in Flight!


Nope, Life isn’t perfect, yet hopefully it’s better than when you started, right? Every step along the way has a purpose! I believe that!

And here’s a little tip: You’ve written lots of content- even the Big Brands use and reuse their content! Just rearrange it a bit to suit the moment! I tend to forget that myself!

Again, if you would like to take a look at the FREE Pro Tips Masterclass

  • It’s full of Color Tips,
  • has some Design Tips,
  • talks about Props, Images and Materials,
  • an easy Writing Lesson,
  • an Easy Way to Find Your Ideal Customer,
  • Carousel Posts,
  • Hashtag Training and
  • Marketing Tips-
  • You won’t want to miss the PDF’s that go with this Masterclass!

Here’s the Link: for Be Unforgettable Pro Tips Masterclass! It’s Free and here’s the Link:

Be Unforgettable Pro Tip Masterclass


I hope you find it helpful and don’t forget it’s Free!

Love y’all. Brenda

Creator of Be Unforgettable Beginner’s Guide to Visual Marketing (it’s still in Beta Format too! Updates coming soon! Here’s the link if you’d like to take a look:

Be Unforgettable Beginner’s Guide to Visual Marketing

Don’t Wait until it’s Perfect..

Don’t Wait until it’s Perfect, just get Started. This is a quote I wrote as a reminder to myself. Am I a perfectionist? I don’t think so, yet when I’m writing I want to express myself in a way that serves the reader and not myself. That’s always been true, no matter the subject.

Do I have bouts of procrastination? Yep that happens. Am I anxious about things? Yep, that too.

Okay- here’s what happened recently. I had set a goal, a deadline also. I needed to add some new segments to my online course- Be Unforgettable Beginner’s Guide to Visual Marketing. https://camellia-s-cottage-

It was in the Launch Phase and had had wonderful reviews and good results- I wanted it to be better, more informative. I had done the work. Still. I wasn’t going to meet the deadline or the goal. It wasn’t perfect. My timing was awful it seemed to me.

After stewing about it. I regrouped and thought- ‘Well, I could add all of these Pro Tips and put them into a Free Masterclass‘- which I have done. I still missed my deadline on that project too.

Let’s just say, I’m still tech challenged! Does that matter? Maybe. Who knows? What really matters is..

  • That it Serves Folks and helps them with what they post and how.
  • That it’s helpful to the ones who need to uplevel the looks of what they post.
  • That it helps folks learn a few things about Writing Content.
  • That learn an easier way to share their Values in ways that aren’t offensive.
  • That they learn a few Easier Ways to Market (sell) their products and services.
  • And more…

So, even though it wouldn’t be perfect or meet the deadline- it Would be a Way to Serve. And, I decided early on- that I would offer it Free. Yes, that’s right. Free.

2023 isn’t going to be a Year when we want to do fancy stuff- it’s Back to Basics Time. Money may be tight for those who Offer Products and Services. It’s going to be a Year when we all feel like Beginner’s again or Even Dreamers. I love those folks. I hope to Serve them. I hope to Motivate them too. In fact, those are my ‘Words of the Year’ for my community. Motivate and Serve.

So- I decided Voltaire is Right- ‘Perfect is the Enemy of the Good.’ I hope you will too.

If we wait until it’s all Perfect? There may be people who need what we have. Need what we have to Write or Say. Think of those folks. Decide right now, that it’s less important that we are Heard and far more important that we make them know they are Heard.

That in our Listening- We make them Feel that we can be part of their Solution rather than sitting on our hands, our words, our solutions and waiting for Perfection. We decided to Motivate and Serve.

Love y’all, Brenda.

PS the Pro Tips Masterclass is Live! And yes, it’s Free! It will take about an hour to watch or you can stop and resume as you have time!

If you’d like to see what it’s all about, here’s the link for Be Unforgettable Pro Tip Masterclass: and no, it’s probably not perfect, but that’s ok too! All the best in the New Year!