John Chow has a post today where he is offering to give away a Microsoft USB Lanyard. It actually isn't even the main purpose of his post, it actually is only a small blurb at the end of the blog. But the number of comments he has gotten on it in a very short time is, as expected, very high as that is the way to enter the contest to win the Lanyard. I have TONS of Microsoft crap, as I of course worked there and received lots of stuff in my short time there.
This is of course a tried-and-true way to increase traffic in any arena. Give away stuff. I had one experience at Microsoft that actually scared me and made me shake my head at other Microsofties. At one of the product fairs that Microsoft has yearly for its employees, I was manning a booth. Some of the other booths were giving away SWAG like T-shirts, stress balls, etc. I made my way to the booth next to mine and tried to wait patiently in line for a T-Shirt. While waiting I was being pushed and shoved by people from all sides. People were grabbing T-Shirts out of the hands of other Employees! It was a mad house. And remember, these are Microsoft Full Time Employees. Almost all of them make close to six-figures. Yet they are willing to trample their fellow employees to get their hands on a free $5 T-shirt. Unbelievable.
I'm not sure I have the traffic yet to actually justify doing a give away. Also, I suspect that most of my readers actually work at Microsoft at the moment so not sure how effective giving away Microsoft stuff would be. Then again, given what I experienced above, maybe those employees would be the most aggressive at trying to get the SWAG. Does anybody want any SWAG?