Learn best practices for starting and running a float center:
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Something in the world of floating have you stumped?

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Show Highlights

Float On has been known throughout the years for pulling off outlandish marketing stunts with mixed success. For example, we ran a giveaway on social media back in 2014 for a full year of free floats to our lucky winner.

Derek and Ashkahn provide a follow up on the success of that campaign and talk about the primary, secondary, and tertiary benefits that came from doing such a major giveaway.

Show Resources

Kingsumo (the WordPress plugin used to run this giveaway)

The Float On Floatillionaire Giveaway Landing Page

The Life Story of our Winner

And here’s Graham and Ashkahn posing with Belinda Carroll, our winner with her comically large novelty gift card. 

Listen to Just the Audio

Transcription of this episode… (in case you prefer reading)

Derek: Welcome.

Ashkahn: Hey everybody.

Derek: Hi.

Ashkahn: This is Ashkahn.

Derek: This is Derek.

Ashkahn: Got the old Ashkahn-Derek crew here today.

Derek: We should come up with clever name.

Ashkahn: Yeah, Dere-kan?

Derek: Yeah, that’s not as cool as Grashkamn…

Ashkahn: Yeah, Dere-kan

Derek: Dere-kan?

Ashkahn: Ash-dere-kan, that’s pretty good?

Derek: Deresh-kan

Ashkahn: Ash-der-ashk… ash-der-akan?

Derek: Do we have a question? Deresh-kan?

Ashkahn: We do, Ash-dere-kan.

Derek: Okay.

Ashkahn: Our question for today is, “can you tell us what went into running your, ‘free floats for a year’ giveaway?

Was it worth it?”

Derek: Well, you heard about it and we did it years ago, so yes! The word is still getting out about it.

Ashkahn: We got you!

Derek: Sucker! Actually, I remember that, it was kind of a different thing. It was free floats for a year, to one lucky person and the way it kind of ran was, ran Facebook ads, ran Facebook posts and all that good stuff. And directed people towards a landing page on our website, we used WordPress and so we used a plug-in called Kingsumo and we ran a contest where people entered their email address, and then randomly one person won. And that person, there was some legal tax things we had to do; for example, if it was over, I think, 200 dollars or 600 dollars.

Ashkahn: Yeah.

Derek: We thought, well of course.

Ashkahn: Free giveaway.

Derek: Free floats for a year,  we basically said, how many floats do you want? Because you’re going to end up having to pay the taxes on this. I think she actually chose eight floats a month.

Ashkahn: Uh-huh.

Derek: She chose eight floats a month, we sent her a 10-99 at the end of the year on that. She, I’m assuming paid her taxes, I don’t know her life story.

Ashkahn: Well we’ll find out and put it in the show notes for you.

Derek: Oh, yeah, see if she’s evading taxes. She used all those floats, and she used them all within the year. She didn’t have too. Float-On is pretty lenient on the membership policies, but she, actually was a happy ending, in the fact that the winner of this also ran

Don’t laugh at me

Ashkahn: You’re the one that made it weird. I’m just glad it was a good

Derek: I’m getting to the end of the story.

Ashkahn: I’m just glad it wasn’t a tragic ending, you know? Then you know, one day…

Derek: She’s got scared from tanks for life.

Ashkahn: She’s floated to many times.

Derek: Turned into a primordial monkey.

She actually ran the comedy club down the road, which we did not know, but she would actually run a podcast with the comedian before they went on the show and then they would float before that, then do the podcast and then the comedian would do the show.

Ashkahn: Hey, I didn’t even know that.

Derek: I don’t want to give her a name, I mean, you could probably find her name out.

Ashkahn: That’s cool.

Derek: She used her floats for business purposes as well too.

Ashkahn: Nice.

Derek: It not only got her floating regularly, it got a whole plethora of people associated with the comedy club floating regularly. In that aspect, it worked great!

Ashkahn: Sounds like it was worth it!

Derek: Right! Rather than running a huge contest, working for one person’s case that was just happenstance in a lucky break for us, it actually worked for us in other ways. We gained about 3500 emails in that short period of time.

Ashkahn: What was the duration that we ran this?

Derek: I believe it was a month.

Ashkahn: Okay. Start to finish?

Derek: This was a few years ago, I mean, we can always go back to that post but, I believe it was a month.

Ashkahn: It was basically just a raffle?

Derek: It was not even really

Ashkahn: With peoples emails going in?

Derek: People’s emails went into this software and the software random number generator picked one person.

Ashkahn: Yeah.

Derek: And that was it.

Ashkahn: It should be noted that we did make her a giant novelty Float-On gift card.

Derek: We should find that picture and put it in the show now, for sure.

Ashkahn: If someone is going to win a year of floats we should make a humongous, 3-ft, you know, poster-gift-card to hand them. Which we did, so that was hilarious.

Derek: That was great. It made great for social media afterwards to, because then we got to celebrate the winner and they got to see this great picture, so got the word of floating spread out. Even more people tuned in, ’cause who knows when we’re going to giveaway floats like that again. It got us a lot of good residual benefits.

Ashkahn: We mentioned that we had 3500 people added to our mailing list, that’s actually where the idea came from. Our goal with this wasn’t to create good social media content, or you know, obviously all these things were benefited. These were kind of a nice way of hitting all these points at once. The actual way this idea came up, was from us brainstorming ways to increase our mailing list. That was the goal that led to this idea and that was why, to enter, you’re entering our mailing list and you’re being a part of it through that purpose and at the end, we quantify that, not only because this lady who won ended up being really awesome, and that part of it lead to, kind of, random, cool, stuff that happened. Also, because we had this huge boost in our mailing list and we do, you know, we hit people through our mailing list for December, when we sell cheap gift cards.

Derek: Secret June sale.

Ashkahn: Quote and unquote, “Secret June sale” once a year, we blast out a huge sale. We do just a one-day sale, once a year. We use our mailing list as the main avenues when we do these things. To the point where we can actually sit down afterwards, and say okay, we sold this many gift cards, we have this many people on our mailing list, here’s the value of someone being on our mailing list. It’s a couple bucks, if you average it all out, we get about-

Derek: Three or four bucks a person.

Ashkahn: Something like that, per person who’s on our mailing list. So for us to increase our mailing list by 3500 people, is a very tangible thing for us.

Derek: Seven, ten, fourteen thousand extra in sales that year, that one gimmick.

Ashkahn: That’s a good way of thinking about it. Gimmick? You know, it’s a developed marketing strategy perhaps.

Derek: Campaign? Sorry. Sorry.

Strategic campaign?

Ashkahn: We did kind of a light version of this too. We had some months, where once a month we were choosing people

Derek: It doesn’t have to be a huge giveaway like that. Sometimes, we’ll just chose ten floats to giveaway, or one or ten people will win one float, or one person wins one float. These giveaways, especially if you’re able to capture their emails, if it’s something that’s a bigger prize, people are more willing to give-up their emails. If it’s a small prize, like potential to win one float, people probably aren’t going to give-up their email to win one float. Something like, win ten floats, well that’s a great deal. You have to take care of the legal ends of everything, but you know what? That person’s now going to float ten times, or share them with their friends and expose a whole bunch of new people to floating. It really does work, all around.

Ashkahn: When it gets big, it just becomes naturally more exciting.

Derek: Right.

Ashkahn: And news worthy, it’s self.

Derek: A year’s worth of floats. It’s incredible.

Ashkahn: It’s a very justified social media post, or other posts, when you’re like, hey, we are giving away a year’s worth of floats. It’s really, exciting, and it’s big enough, significant enough that it’s worth, mentioning all by itself.

Derek: I do add that, Kingsumo, WordPress plug-in gives an element where people can get extra entries for sharing with their friends. Let’s say, I entered and it says “Share your special, unique link, and for every person that signs up through your link for this contest, you’ll get three extra entries into this contest.”

It really helped incentivize the viral spreading of this contest. We did Facebook ads, we did some posts but it was really people who entered, sharing it that helped drive that.

It worked great. We probably should do it again.

Ashkahn: I guess so, yeah.

Derek: Thanks for reminding us.

Ashkahn: That’s a good a idea.

Derek: Glad somebody reminded us we had it.

Ashkahn: Alright, now, if you guys out there have other questions of things we’ve done in the past, that we kind of forgot about, that we should probably do again, you can send them to us on our website.

Derek: Floattanksolutions.com/podcast

Ashkahn: That’s right. Type it in. We’ll be here and we will answer another one of your lovely questions tomorrow.

Derek: You won’t win anything except for the satisfaction of an answer.

Ashkahn: Which truly is the greatest prize we can give.

Derek: True. Bye everybody.

Recent Podcast Episodes

Tank Topic: Special Float Center Cleaning Tips

Tank Topic: Special Float Center Cleaning Tips

Any float center owner knows that these tanks and the rooms they live in are fickle creatures that need particular supplies to maintain. This Tank Topic is a great collection of practical tips and tricks for keeping tanks, showers and rooms clean and happy.

Tank Topics: Building Your Own Float Tank

Tank Topics: Building Your Own Float Tank

This is a simple two episode compilation about advice on building your own float tanks. The guys are pretty against the idea. Having built two of the 6 tanks at Float On in house, they personally know the challenges that arise with this and how many unexpected obstacles you have to get over to make it happen. In between their blanket condemnation of the idea, though, are really helpful tidbits of what to look out for if you absolutely cannot be dissuaded.

Tank Topics: Opening a Business

Tank Topics: Opening a Business

Something in the world of floating have you stumped? Show HighlightsIn the second of our Tank Topics episodes, we take a look at what starting a business looks like and how starting a float center is the...

Tank Topics: Choosing a Location

Tank Topics: Choosing a Location

Welcome back to DSP! We covered so many things over the course of 366 episodes, we thought we’d highlight some of the topics we covered in our new ongoing series of compilations: Tank Topics.

With our first Tank Topic, we’re covering how to choose a location and all the things to consider, from construction to hipness. Check it out now!

Our Live Show Finale – DSP 367

Our Live Show Finale – DSP 367

Our final episode of the Daily Solutions Podcast. Join us as we take calls from the float industry and Graham and Ashkahn answer your most pressing questions.
Watch the video on YouTube at https://youtu.be/wpTYbPAOg9E
or on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/FloatSolutions/videos/267233400579454/

Latest Blog Posts

2019 Rise Live Event Blog

2019 Rise Live Event Blog

We've already landed in St. Louis, checked in to our AirBnb, and have been greeted by the warm embrace of our float family here for the Rise Float Gathering.  The welcome party was wonderful. Drinks were had, stories were shared, and old friends greeted each other and...

Why we’re excited for the Rise Float Gathering

Why we’re excited for the Rise Float Gathering

Rise is coming up soon, May 3rd through 5th, and while many of you have probably heard about it, most of you probably haven’t been there. I’d like to talk about how it compares to other industry events, and what makes it so special. We’ve attended Rise every year, and...

A Deep(er) Dive on Float On’s Membership Change

A Deep(er) Dive on Float On’s Membership Change

  A little while ago, Float On changed from a tiered membership system to single priced memberships. There’s a lot of debate in the float industry as to which one is better but there are clear and valid arguments for and against. We even did a podcast episode...


Float Tank Conference