Over the past few weeks, we’ve been giving away Fitbit Flex wristbands through a contest we’re running on Twitter. When we were initially planning how we want to run it, we knew that it had to be something that was as automated as possible and needed to be fair for everyone involved. It also seemed like this contest is simple enough that we shouldn’t need to pay a service or someone to manage it.
Zapier for Automation
I’ve become a huge fan of Zapier over the past few months. I use it to automate quite a few tasks that would otherwise cost me time every day, week, or month. While we were planning the contest, I decided that we would use Zapier to collect the Tweets and automatically drop them into a Google Spreadsheet.
Zapier refers to this as a “Zap” and they have a huge list of preexisting Zaps available as well as allowing you to create your own based on the various APIs and data sources they interface with. We set the Zap up to take the text, username, and timestamp from each tweet mentioning @authoritylabs and containing the #ALHealth hashtag and drop each one into a Google Spreadsheet.
This Zap will check twitter every 15 minutes and drop any new entries into our Google Spreadsheet.
Selecting a Winner
Now that we’ve collected all the Tweets, it’s time to select a winner. Each Friday of the contest, we jump into the spreadsheet and check to see how many rows are in there. Then we plug that number into a random number generator and whichever number comes up will be matched up with a row in the spreadsheet and the person whose tweet is on that row is the winner. Quick, simple, and fair for everyone.
Since the rules of the contest are that you can only enter once per day, we decided that only the first entry a user makes each day will be eligible for the contest. We could manually go in and remove the ineligible entries but that would just waste time. If the random number chosen happened to be for a Tweet that is from someone who already entered for the day, we would generate a new random number. It hasn’t been an issue so far, but it is something to keep in mind.
If you haven’t entered the contest yet, now is a good time to enter. We’re giving away 3 more Fitbit Flex wristbands over the next 3 weeks and you have just as much of a chance as anyone to win.