I am Michelle Valentine, and I’ve created thousands of giveaways, promotions, and contests – all for the benefit of businesses I’ve owned (television production company, dating service, salon, cosmetic line, jewelry line, clothing boutique) or for the companies I’ve worked with.

If you want to learn about an easy (and free) way to advertise, this blog post is for you!

Having coordinated over 1,000 successful events at restaurants, country clubs, hotel lounges, nightclubs, etc. has made me shake my head a few times at missed opportunities by these owners (and sometimes the Marketing Directors).

For instance, when I would search for new restaurants to host an event at, I’ve had a restaurant owner say to me,

“You want me to give one free house drink to each of your guests… and provide them with samples of my food on my menu? I’m in the business to make money, not give my food and drinks away! I’m not interested in hosting one of your events.”

And I would reply,

“Mr. Business Owner, I contacted you because I had lunch here last Friday with a client. Your food was delicious, and your restaurant is beautifully decorated. I was surprised only 2 other tables were occupied at the time. I would like to introduce my thousands of followers that live and/or work near your restaurant to love it and patronize it as I do.”

And the owner said,

“Well then, just bring all your guests here, and let them buy my drinks and food when they’re here.”

And I replied,

“Mr. Business Owner, consider the drinks and food samples your personal advertising cost for me to introduce my followers to your business. Fifty house drinks and a few sample plates of food will cost you no more than $100. For that $100, I will introduce your business to thousands of people via my social media promotions, and at least 50 of my hyper-local followers will attend that evening. And on top of that, they drink (purchase) more than one drink, and many times, they order full meals while at my events. So actually, you make back your $100 and then some, plus gain new customers that are your exact target market.”

And yet, on rare occasions in the past few decades of promotions, some owners still don’t “get it” and decline. *head shake*


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That brings me to helping you with the benefits of promotions, and specifically, GIVEAWAYS.

Giveaways bring you the benefits of say, an event, but it’s all easily done online… and it’s a very economical way to advertise your business!


Here are 3 tips to help you grow your business by providing a Giveaway:

1.  Choose the Right Influencer to Work With

Say you own a pizzeria and you want to get more customers in your “Little Italy” pizzeria…

Quick Quiz:

Would you rather work with an Influencer that has thousands of local high school followers…

Or an Influencer that has hundreds of middle-aged business professionals that work in the area?

The answer depends on your type of business.

If your “Little Italy” pizzeria offers pizza by the slice for $1.50 and large pizzas for $5.99, go with the Influencer with the local high school followers.

Go for the QUANTITY!

Sell those $1.50 slices of pizza until your staff can’t keep up with the lines of teens out your door! Keep that pizza production line running fast!


If your “Little Italy” pizzeria sells gourmet pizza slices for $5.50 per slice and a large gourmet pizza is $23.99…

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Your best option would be to work with the Influencer that has hundreds of those middle-aged business professionals.

Go for the QUALITY!

Go for the Influencer that has the followers with more money to spend on your gourmet pizza slices for lunch.

They will also be the customers that order two of those gourmet pizzas and take home for dinner!

So, choosing the right Influencer for your company isn’t about the number of followers they have… it’s about the Influencer that reaches your target market.


2.  Find the Right Angle

Regardless of your business/product/service, you must find the “right angle” to interest your potential audience!

For instance, years ago, when a spice company was interested in advertising on my television show, I really had to think hard to find an angle!

My classic TV show, the “Michelle Valentine Show” is about dating & relationships, so how could I get my viewers really excited about bottled spices, when I am hosting my TV show dining at romantic restaurants, vacationing at beautiful hotels & getaways – and interviewing medical doctors, beauty experts, and romance book authors?

I LOVE cooking, and using spices is of course part of the fun!


My idea for the “right angle” was taking these spices and showcasing ways to “cook up romantic meals for your special someone”.

It was super-great that this spice company also had chocolate spices, as we created chocolate desserts, too. Yummy!

… and we all know that chocolate is an aphrodisiac! *wink wink*


We produced 16, five-minute TV cooking segments featuring the company’s representative cooking up 16 different tasty dishes using the bottled spices.

Finding the right angle is critical to attracting the right audience for your business/product/service.

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Always keep in mind:

The reason to participate in a Giveaway is to showcase your business to an entirely new audience, which in turn, will grow your business!


3.  Give Away the Right Amount

Remember that a Giveaway promotion must be beneficial to the audience participating, as they will have to jump a few hoops to enter.

Most of time, that involves submitting their name, email address, age, city of residence, follow on multiple social media accounts, etc.

So providing just one (1) lonely ticket to your movie theatre just won’t do.

Jazz it up, make it exciting!

Perhaps provide a “Date Night Movie & Dinner” giveaway package of:

  • two (2) tickets to an exciting new movie
  • one (1) large bucket of popcorn
  • two (2) hot dogs
  • two (2) boxes of candy
  • two (2) small sodas
  • and a free limited-edition movie poster

The promotional value would be about $100, but those 2 tickets “cost” you nothing (service)… the popcorn your cost maybe $3… two small sodas your cost maybe $4… and the movie poster is provided free by the entertainment marketing company.

An additional idea would be to connect with the restaurant next door and get them involved, too!

Perhaps have them provide an after-movie large gourmet pizza and two (2) specialty cocktails!

Now see how exciting that Giveaway for “Date Night Movie & Dinner” would be for the audience?

Thank you for reading this article and I hope you found some information useful.


Michelle Valentine
TV Host & Producer of the new travel & dining TV series, “Love Eat Travel”


I am always seeking businesses/products/services to promote in my Giveaways, so if you would like to participate, learn more here.

Thank you again, and happy promoting!