There are literally millions of blogs out there. Some, like mine and Ed‘s, have less of a specific focus, while others approach a very particular niche. What’s surprising is that prior to Contest Blogger, I have never before found a blog that was completely dedicated to letting us know about all the cool blog contests, link exchanges, and writing projects on the ‘net. Everyone loves to win free stuff, but most people can’t be bothered to sift through all the junky blogs on the web to find these contests. Now, you don’t need to, because Contest Blogger does it for you.
With this blog contest-tracking website, everybody — quite literally — has something to gain.
Winners All Around
On the one hand, we have the readers who can come to one convenient location, knowing with some assurance that they will be enlightened on contests that give away 25 bucks, a home microbrewery, and free web hosting for a year. The variety of prizes is astounding. This also helps readers find out about blogs that they wouldn’t have otherwise visited. The easiest way to keep up with all the giveaways is to subscribe to the RSS feed to Contest Blogger.
On the other hand, webmasters and blog owners can treat themselves to free publicity by submitting a contest. Phil Van Treuren, the man behind Contest Blogger, can’t guarantee that he will highlight your contest, but it only takes you 30 seconds to blast over a message — use this contact form — and then you just have to wait and see. Buying Phil a coffee might help ease the process.
When I first heard about Contest Blogger last month, I immediately sent Phil an email telling him about my USB TV Tuner contest and he immediately replied, saying that he’d be glad to build some buzz for me. And he delivered. Check out the free publicity.
When it comes to blog contests, everyone wins.
It’s Growing and It’s Generous
Contest Blogger, according to the About page, is dedicated only to the link building community that is the blogosphere. You won’t find any spammy sweepstakes links or cheesy corporate contests. It’s about real people, giving prizes and linkbacks to other real people.
There are other blogs out there that specialize in prizes and contests, but Contest Blogger deals exclusively with blogs and bloggers. Our webmaster, Phil Van Treuren, is a professional blogger who knows how much time and dedication it takes to build a succesful blog . . . and he won’t waste your time with anything other than projects and contests that will help you build your traffic and make your blog more lucrative.
Oh, and Phil, you’re missing an S in successful there.
Beyond the Rhetoric took over a year to hit the 100 RSS subscriber mark, but Contest Blogger hit the RSS century mark in under a month. That’s right: Contest Blogger has only been around since the middle of June: here’s the first post. This massive growth says a lot, because it proves that people are genuinely interested in blog contests and they are immediately attracted to the promise that Contest Blogger brings to the table.
Continuing with the absolute genius that is Contest Blogger, you’ll notice that with a lot of blog contests, the main way to enter is to write a blog entry of some kind, perhaps linking to the contest page or the blog’s main page. What makes Contest Blogger so clever is that when Phil writes a post about a particular contest, oftentimes that post automatically becomes an entry. Phil gets traffic and he has the potential of winning something. And he did.
Most people would just take these free prizes and run, happily keeping them for themselves. But not Phil. He has taken an oath that he will not keep ANY of the prizes that he wins as a result of posting on Contest Blogger. If it’s a cash prize, he’ll put it back into the system through advertising. If it’s a physical item — like an iPod or whatever — then he’ll give it away on Contest Blogger. In his own words, “That’s just how much we love you.”
Win Free Stuff from Contest Blogger
Although I’m not normally a fan of three-column blogs, the design of Contest Blogger actually works quite well. Despite having all that content, it doesn’t feel cluttered at all and the color scheme is gentle on the eyes. I also noticed that Contest Blogger has the same taste in RSS buttons as I do. One suggestion that I have is that for the middle sidebar, it might be valuable to add a brief bit of text under Phil’s picture, linking to the About page. Not everyone knows to click on the picture.
Contest Blogger comes highly recommended and easily earns the Michael Kwan stamp of approval. I wish Phil all the best and I encourage you to subscribe to their full feed RSS to keep track of all the awesome blog contests and linkback promotions out there.