Like many first-time mommies, I needed a lot of baby stuff but hardly had the budget for a Mariah Carey-style, butterfly-infested, 1200 thread count nursery.

My kids may not be named after Hollywood legends and have their own Twitter accounts, but they still deserve the best I can afford.

So I taught myself how to find and enter blog giveaways using social media. I nearly completely outfitted my nursery before my daughter came home.

I won gift cards, a $230 high chair, a first-class breast pump, a carseat, swaddling blankets, clothes, shoes, baby DVDs and so much more! When she outgrew things, I consigned them. Frugal Level: Hardcore.

One year I put blog giveaways to work for Christmas presents. I won half of all the gifts for our family.

I was introduced to these kinds of giveaways through a blogger. I saw many things our family could use just out there waiting for me. I found Twitter is the ultimate tool to get the most entries to the most interesting giveaways.

Step 1: Use Twitter Search 

  • Think about what you need.
  • Search Twitter by item type or brand. Example: “high chair giveaway” or “tea collection giveaway.”
  • Scroll through the tweets and click on the hyperlinks of the giveaways that interest you.
  • Each blog is different. Make sure you follow the directions exactly or forfeit the entry.
  • Usually find a “Tweet” button on the blog giveaway post to complete your Tweet.
  • Go to your Twitter home page.
  • Click on your latest Tweet to see “details.”
  • When you click on “details” look for a URL unique to that Tweet.
  • Copy the URL and go back to the blog giveaway page and paste the URL to finish your Tweet entry.
  • Use Twitter to re-Tweet.

Step 2: Follow Up

  • Most blogs allow one Tweet entry per day. The more you are able to enter, the higher your chances of winning.
  • To see previous entries, go to your Twitter home page. Click on Tweets.
  • Click on hyperlinks of the previous day’s entries and you can reenter from the blog’s giveaway post again.

Step 3: Winning

  • Most blogs will send an e-mail and allow 48 hours for a reply with name and address. I have found these contests are legitimate. They are new products sent from a company (not a blog) or from a contracted marketing firm. Remember, make sure you respond to contest entries that you’ve sought out and entered.
  • When the item arrives, send a quick reply to the blogger. If the prize fails to arrive for six weeks, contact the blogger who has direct contact with the company.

Obviously, the more time you devote to this, the more often you will win. It was slow for me at first, but I began to receive two to five items free a week. At the peak, I was spending about 45 minutes a day entering, because there were so many things I needed. Other times I’ve just been interested in one item. I found that spending five minutes a day for a couple of weeks or months nets rewards.

This has been a guest post by Bethany from Federal Way, WA
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A Little Bird Told Me: How to Use Twitter to Find Giveaways