Will I Get Spam From Doing Competitions?

Spam is defined by as "Unsolicited 'junk' e-mail sent to large numbers of people to promote products or services". They key term in the definition is unsolicited. If you have agreed to join a mailing list and/or receive offers from a company (or their third parties) when you have entered a competition and they then email you - it is not spam. For example if you sign up to a free lotto site then the chances are that they will email you daily. They do this to remind you to visit their site to check to see if you've won plus they may include some advertising features. This is not spam as part of the entry requirement is that you receive their email.

Too many people are quick to accuse companies of spamming despite having previously agreed to join their mailing lists. We once got accused of spamming someone when we sent them a Lucky Winning Email! Dishing out your details when entering prize draws is going to generate emails. You may receive offers, promotions and updates from the promoters and/or any third parties. You'll most certainly get a lot more emails if you sign up to permission marketing sites as they are designed to get your details to pass on to third parties.

Ticking The Box & Managing Your Emails

Some brand emails are worth receiving because they often tell you of new competitions or include discount codes. However nobody likes too much marketing gumph in their inbox. If you don't wish to receive emails from a competition promoter then you should always be able choose not to receive emails when you enter a prize draw. This should have no effect on your chances of winning a prize or entering a draw. These days all 'can we send you marketing' messages should be opt-in. This means that you need to tick the box to receive emails as opposed to untick a box to not receive them.

Be sure to read the information next to any tickboxes carefully. For example on Good Housekeeping you're invited to sign up to a newsletter if you tick a box. But if you prefer Hearst Communications, who own Good Housekeeping, not to be contact you about other promotions by email, SMS, phone or post then you need to tick the boxes if you don't want the communications. To be on the safe side make sure that you check the rules, terms and conditions of entry and all small print. Any emails that you receive from a promoter should always include an unsubscribe option.

A Comping Email Address

The best advice we can offer is that you set up a seperate email account specifically for competitions. By having a specific comping account you can keep your personal emails inbox clear of a stream of marketing messages. Services like hotmail and gmail allow multiple email addresses so there's no problem picking up a free account. We suggest you don't use words like comps or competitions in your email address. It shouldn't make any difference to a properly run prize draw but some promoters don't like any sign of compers.

By having a comping email account you can also set up folders and filters to make life easier. Google does some automatic filtering with things like 'Social', 'Promotions' and 'Updates' but you might want to take it further. However you set things up do keep eye on the emails you receive and do watch your spam baskets as sometimes your winning emails do end up in the wrong folder. In short comping is going to increase the amount of emails you receive but with careful organisation and checking the terms you can minimise a lot of unnecessary messages heading to your inbox.