Tuesday, 10 June 2014


As part of my blog transition from a personal blog to keep track of my wins (formerly Another Win For Me) to a full on comping blog (I Want To Win), I am going to be writing some comping related posts that you will hopefully all find useful and my first is this one about entering competitions on Twitter.

I'm hoping this guide will provide useful, tips & tricks for those that are new to entering competitions on Twitter as well as helping to dismiss a few myths for those who are veterans on Twitter.

Well, obviously you need a Twitter account to enter competitions - sign up is quick and easy and free. I don't think I need to go into further details, but just leave a comment should you need any further help at this stage.

Now, onto how to actually enter a competition on Twitter...

Well, firstly, you have to find competitions to enter. When I started on Twitter competitions back in 2010, it was simply because I came across a few in December (advents) by accident and got entering them. I used to search for Twitter terms such as "win" and "competition" to find competitions to enter. Twitter is where I started comping. To search for competitions, just type in your search on Twitter like this:

Click the screenshot to see it full size
Then I began to notice people who regularly entered competitions. I started following them on Twitter to find competitions. You can do this too. I enter lots of competitions - feel free to follow me on Twitter @XFilesFanaticus to help you find competitions:

Click the screenshot to see it full size

My husband, Paul made a site a couple of years ago called Twitaculous - we list literally hundreds of Twitter competitions on the site every week and it is updated on a daily basis with new competitions. All competitions can be entered directly from the site and you can also keep track of the items you would most like to win in your Watch List will help you find them and retweet them more frequently. You will need to occasionally check your DMs (direct messages) and @ mentions on Twitter to check for wins, however.

Click the screenshot to see it full size

Click the screenshot to see it full size

Unless specifically stated as one entry only, you can RT (retweet) the competition more than once. You can do this by typing something along the lines of "RT @name: copy & paste original competition tweet here" or you can use Twitaculous to do this for you. After your original RT, future RTs of the same competition will show up as a copy & paste RT as shown above.

Now, most importantly, how to enter a competition once you find one... It's quite simple really, you just hit the retweet button like this:

Click the screenshot to see it full size

Virtually all of the competitions you enter will also require that you follow the account of the company/person giving away the prize - do this in the same way as I showed you earlier how to follow other compers.

I think that pretty much covers how to find and enter competitions. Now for a few key things to remember:

1. Twitter has a limit on the amount of people/companies you can follow. By default, this is set to 2,000. Once you have followed 2,000 people, you will not be able to follow any more - that is unless you exceed 2,000 people who follow you in return - lots of companies will follow you back, so this helps, you can also ask fellow compers to follow you as well ( don't be offended if they say no, remember they have a following limit too, so they may want to save their last valuable follows to enter a competition).

2. If you tweet too often, you risk getting put in 'Twitter Jail' - this means that you will not be able to tweet or retweet for a set amount of time as determined by Twitter. It seems to vary - anything from 10 minutes up to a few hours before the 'jail sentence' is lifted. Try to limit yourself when it comes to entering to avoid ending up in jail. There is no trigger limit on the amount of tweets that causes you to be sent to jail as far as I know, it is just when Twitter deems that you have tweeted too many in a certain amount of time. Particularly, with a new Twitter account, you need to go easy and not get carried away as Twitter's tolerance threshold seems a lot lower and is likely to get your account suspended rather than sent to jail. If you are suspended, you will not be able to log in, tweet, retweet, send DMs or read @ mentions at all - your account will not be useable. You can appeal your suspended account, and most are re-instated within a few days, but all the time you are suspended, you could be missing out on wins, so it is important you try not to get too carried away. This goes for veteran Twitter compers too, it's not just new accounts that get suspended, I've been suspended a few times myself for tweeting too much (oops!) and have had to contact Twitter to get my account re-instated. So my warning to you is take it easy - particularly if you are new to Twitter - go reasonably slow and if possible, try to include some original (non-retweeted) tweets too.

Now, to dispel some myths. It is common to hear compers on Twitter (even those who are veterans and really should know better) saying "don't RT my competition tweets as this will disqualify me" - this is complete and utter rubbish!! Whilst it is annoying getting notifications whenever someone retweets one of your retweets, it in no way renders the original retweeters retweet as invalid...

Basically, if you retweet a competition (as I showed you earlier), people can see your RT - you have retweeted the original competition post and if someone is looking at your timeline/feed and spots the competition, they can click RT on it too - all this does is also enters them into the competition as they too will be retweeting the original competition post as tweeted by the promoter. If you click on the original competition post from the company/promoter and click on 'RETWEETS', you can see who has retweeted - you will see that both yours and the person who also retweeted it from your accounts RTs are both there, and you have not been disqualified as the rumour would have you believe. However, if someone RTs your copy & paste RT you've done, this will not enter them into the competition. It won't render your c&p (copy & paste) RT as invalid though.

Click the screenshot to see it full size

Pay attention to where a competition is based - lots of people click anything & everything that says win and then seem surprised when they can't have their win - chances are, if the company running the competition is based in the USA/Canada/Australia/China/Ireland etc., you aren't going to get the prize if you are picked as the winner! Lots of competitions state their terms & conditions, but sadly there are lots that don't either which doesn't help things, but you can help yourself - if there are terms & conditions, READ them, if there are no terms, have a quick look at their profile and check they are UK based before entering. This will save you and them time and effort!

I hope you find this guide useful, if there is anything I've missed or you're unsure about, leave a comment and I'll reply to you as soon as possible :)

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