What's the best way to give away $25 amazon gift vouchers?


I would like to give away $25 Amazon gift vouchers as a strategy to get people to use my bootstrapped startup.

What's the best way to give the vouchers away? I would like to give them to the first 10 people who create public business plans on my site, but I don't want to be sued or get taken to the cleaners.

I want to limit the total spend to $500 dollars.

What terms and conditions should I put in place to limit myself to getting in trouble?

EDIT: Thanks for your answers, I have decided not to run that promotion (moved from answer from original author)

Marketing Incentives

asked Oct 3 '10 at 00:35
241 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll
  • Added some more tags - while a catchy title your question is really assuming the answer (and reads a little too much like a blatant plug for your site). "How can I best get people to use my site on a budget of $500?" would perhaps be a more useful question. – Mike 13 years ago
  • There was absolutely no need to mention the site. – David Benson 13 years ago
  • I'm confused, in some posts I see people volunteering their websites. Is this wrong? In other posts I see the questioner not volunteering their website, but later answerers and commenters ask for the website. Is that wrong? What's the policy? – Nathan Farrington 13 years ago
  • I think it's a matter of degree - does the question read like an advertisement or does the web site provide essential background information which is needed to answer the question? – Mike 13 years ago

3 Answers


Few comments, some to your question and some just my perspective:

  • For something of this scope, a business plan, it doesn't seem like a $25 gift certificate would be a great motivator. A business plan is a big deal.
  • To me it almost does the opposite effect. It kind of cheapens what your site is about.
  • Personally I would use some guerrilla efforts to try and get the same result. For example, find a meetup group in your area with entrepreneurs who might find your site beneficial. Look for forums. Then sell these folks on it, hold their hand, work with them.
  • To your question, for giving the gift cards away there's really just one thing you have to be careful of in my opinion. That's making sure that somebody delivers what you're looking for vs. trying to scam you and get a gift card for doing little. You need real clear "mouse type" that says the criteria. Submissions must be approved to earn the reward and can be declined for any reason. Give yourself lots of leeway and always believe there are going to be people out there in the vast online world who try to take advantage of you.
  • When you get a submission you approve, just simple to mail the card to them.


answered Oct 3 '10 at 05:11
4,214 points
  • I didnt think about the "cheapens effect", I think that is a very valid point – Venturesocially.Com 13 years ago


Consider giving ALL the $25 gift certificates to the winner of a competition.

Try and get another company/bank/etc. to co-sponsor the competition.

$500 is a much bigger incentive than $25 which, as @Chris points out, isn't enough when you consider the amount of effort / risk involved in a business plan.

I watched a great presentation by the founder of the X-Prize, Peter Diamandis. He pointed out that the total amount of effort people will put into a competition is out of all proportion to the value of the prize and their chance of winning it. State lotteries rely on this faulty accounting too. Perhaps you can use this effect too. It may well have been this TED talk:


answered Oct 3 '10 at 06:08
946 points


I would suggest buying $25 Amazon gift cards and emailing them the gift card codes...

answered Oct 3 '10 at 04:50
246 points

Your Answer

  • Bold
  • Italic
  • • Bullets
  • 1. Numbers
  • Quote
Not the answer you're looking for? Ask your own question or browse other questions in these topics:

Marketing Incentives