TLC – the network that revealed the extreme side of couponing – introduces viewers to the most passionate sweepstakes participants on the planet in the new one-hour pilot HIGH STAKES SWEEPERS (working title). Production on the special began this week and it will premiere later this summer.
“With HIGH STAKES SWEEPERS, TLC continues to tap into our viewers fascination with and desire for highly entertaining ‘found money’ programming. The special showcases the strategy and surprising winnings of these everyday people who do everything they can to win big,” said Amy Winter, GM, TLC.
According to the Direct Marketing Association, 55 million Americans per year enter sweepstakes, and around 15 million enter 4 or more a year. HIGH STAKES SWEEPERS tells the stories die-hard “sweepers,” who spend up to 60 hours per week searching for forms, buying products, and testing their luck in thousands of contests in the hopes of winning anything from a tube of toothpaste to a trip to Italy. They’re raiding the supermarkets, taking the kids dumpster-diving for bottle caps, and relying on both strategies and superstitions to improve their chances. Viewers will enter their world to see how sweeping has affected their lives, check out the thousands of things they’ve won, and be there when the doorbell rings for the next big prize.
The five sweepers profiled in the special include Ron, who will stop at nothing to save money on his daughter’s upcoming nuptials, and is trying to win everything for the wedding — from the honeymoon to the garter. Carolyn has lost her job and is convinced she can win enough through sweepstakes to earn a living. Sweeping Sisters Barbara and Patricia have won everything from a year’s supply of beer to a case of tampons, and they’re hungry for more! Robert has brought the entire family into his obsession, using his two young kids to help decorate envelopes in the hopes of improving their chances. Ret has won over 1.2 million dollars of prizes and will show us how she does it!
I am passionate about sweepstakes. Not only do I enter on a daily basis, I love teaching others how to win along with helping companies create and manage better sweepstakes. That’s why; I wrote You Can’t Win If You Don’t Enter, wrote The Winning EDGE for seven years, aired With The Contest Queen for 2 years, continue to blog, tweet, teach and consult. If I wasn’t so passionate, I wouldn’t put my heart, time or energy into something I didn’t believe in. I know I have changed peoples lives which is why I continue to do what I do each day.
The Contest Queen Has Taught Others How to Win Over $1 Million in Prizes!
Sadly, the media release put out by TLC today doesn’t reflect the joy, excitement, adventures and friends that can be created by participating in such a unique hobby. They took facts and sensationalized them to garner viewers. As a marketer, I understand the process and the end result they are looking for (heaps of viewers resulting in the pilot becoming a hit series). However, I am afraid the end result I am seeking and the one that will be aired, won’t match. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see…