The idea of a give-away?

I’m seeing something of a trend on some blogs — the “giveaway” — a book, a veil (a pretty one!) a rosary — things like that.

Is this something you guys would be interested in? Specifically, if a Patheos blogger had some kind of exclusive “giveaway” that you could enter into, is this something you would like? It’s a twofer of sorts — some free promotion for a writer or craftsperson and free stuff for recipients.

It’s not something that’s natural or intuitive to me, so I am wondering — Is this a trend I should be paying attention to? Would you like a “free stuff day”, say, once a month or so, around these parts? A “free-stuff Friday”?

What are your thoughts?

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Katherine

    I see give aways from time to time on Pioneer Woman, and she gets responses in 20,000 + range. I have never been tempted to enter, but that’s just me. The only “give away” thing you mentioned that I had an interest in would be the veil, which my dh said no to, for good reason.

  • The Crescat

    Ooo you reminded me. I have a white chapel veil I can give-away. With a kid… I can’t do the white virginal veil. HA! But give-aways do promote interest. I’d be interested to see what you would give away.

  • Liz

    I see the giveaways on quilting blogs as well as PW. It does drive traffic, but the “gift” needs to be related to the purpose of this blog – religion. And it should be on an unscheduled basis if you are trying to drive traffic.

    It would be nice if it helps some of the religious groups that you mention a lot – another way to help them increase their sales and awareness.

  • Katherine

    I love that idea. Some Mystic Monk coffee, or some lotion from the Dominican Nuns. I like even more that these things are “comsumable” and won’t have to be housed.

  • Martina

    Thanks for linking up to our giveaway and opening up a discussion on giveaways, in general.

    I have to share that, in my particular situation, I own and moderate a group of Catholic women who are all over the U.S., many of them Catholic authors, Catholic store owners. The idea appeals to me because there is such limited information out on the internet about good, solid Catholic businesses. As our traffic increased, I felt it was not just a fun thing to do, but an obligation to be able to send the readers at our site to businesses that promote and uphold what the Church teaches. In short, good Catholic businesses are rare gems that need to be shared with others. I am even more pleased when they are people I know.

    I agree that the prizes should reflect our religion, but I also find that on occasion using non- Catholic items draws in non-Catholic Christians to our site and doesn’t just limit the reward to someone who is steadfast in the Faith. I have seen personal friends come to know Jesus in small part due to our website so I know, for me, this works as a great evangelizing tool.

    I think there is definitely room for blogs to encourage giveaways, especially if it brings people to read more about the Faith. :)

  • Oregon Catholic

    It makes me feel a little manipulated when the Pioneer Woman has her give aways (I’ve only entered once). She’ll say “just because I luv ya” and make sure we all know the gift is paid for out of her own pocket. But in reality it’s to drive up traffic and increase her income – nothing wrong with that – but of course it’s never even eluded to much less outright stated so it comes off feeling deceptive to me.

    I’ll keep reading her (and you Anchoress) because she is entertaining and I poke around her blog a lot giving her lots of hits on her own merits but I won’t visit more often just because of give-aways.

    [She has the best and most sinful recipes on the net, hands down. -admin]

  • SWP

    I believe the insights you share and the links your provide are gift enough.

  • Spinster Beth

    I did a giveaway when I reached my 100th post. It is good for special occasions, but by no means required!

  • Klaire

    While it’s not as bad as “buying indulgences”, I think it’s gimicky, and not worthy of a Catholic Blog. If you want to help out the Catholic Stores, advertise them for free, or a nominal price.

    [Klaire, I have a hard time thinking that giving away a book is "not worthy" of a Catholic blog. I mean...given the bingo, the backward drawings, the 50/50's and other things we Catholics have going on in our parishes... -admin]

  • Nick

    I don’t think so. I enjoy reading your blog and you don’t need to entice me to keep coming back.

  • Marie E

    I enjoy this blog because of the writing – I am neutral about gifts – would not make a difference one way or another.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    Really, Anchoress, your articles, and links, are gift enough!

  • Mrs. O

    I like give-aways.

  • Nicole

    I am here for the writing. I have participated in giveaways, I will probably have a giveaway some time, and I like them, but I don’t think they are necessary or even trendy. (I may be wrong.) They have always struck me as something that a) is intended to increase exposure or readership, b) the blog author thinks would be a fun way to interact with his/her audience, or c) is a logical or natural extension of the blog’s unique focus (i.e. craft/hobby blogs). Do it if you’re inspired to. Don’t feel obligated.

  • Martina

    **I think it’s gimicky, and not worthy of a Catholic Blog. **

    I don’t think that’s a charitable way to look at it. If it’s not for you {general you} that’s fine, but to pass judgment on others who do is uncool.

  • Mary

    I think giveaways are a fun idea, though not necessary. I don’t see them as gimmicky or “unworthy” of a Catholic site. And there is certainly nothing wrong with trying to boost readership when your goal is to share the faith. I think the “buying indulgences” comment is sort of out of left field and I don’t understand what one has to do with the other.

  • Jennifer Evancho

    If it’s not your thing don’t do it. I think it is gimmicky, but if you do it, I WILL enter! I have always associated it with marketing, not just a freebie. So I think, is there some product/company you know that you would love to help increase traffic to? Then it would be great. I love to know about small catholic businesses but my time is very limited (first post on your blog and why this one?). Good Luck