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How to run the best social media contests and giveaways

Competitions and giveaways

This festive season, influencer marketing campaigns have seen a spike on Instagram and other platforms. Brands seem to have resorted to contests and giveaways which fare better than some of the other kinds of influencer marketing campaigns.

Instagram’s recent algorithm is triggered in a way that the platform rewards business pages that show organic engagement from followers with higher exposure and reach.

With the immense competition out there in the world of social media, where the customer scrolls through content in a blink, contests help in driving engagement with personal attention.

Why do the audience respond well to contests and giveaways?

  1. If the giveaways are simple enough and mutually beneficial, the followers are open to engaging than any other kind of posts.

  2. Giveaway posts see the highest success rate in terms of likes and engagement.

Why do brands and influencers like this type of influencer marketing campaign?

  1. Hosting giveaways can guarantee growth in the influencer and the brand’s social media in forms of followers, likes, tweets, etc.

  2. With the personalized touch of influencers already attracting in the audience, these contests are a major push for the audience to interact with the brand organically.

  3. Social media contests are exceptional not only for increasing a brand’s social media following, but also gaining an increase in the emailer database.

  4. This also acts as a legal marketing research method thus expanding consumer insights for the brand.

How to run a marketing contest/competition or a giveaway?

Set a brand goal

This is the case for every marketing campaign and contests are no exception. Set clear goals like range of spike in sales, brand awareness, social media exposure or gaining marketing research to widen product options.

There are 2 ways to do this – 1. Get the influencers to host the competition on their social media profile or the brand page hosts the contest and the influencers share the link on their social media page.

Which platform works best for your brand?

While experimenting with all the social media channels cuts down the risk, there are some defined advantages to Instagram for these contests. Recently, Facebook has taken a major dip in engagement. Unless the brand decides to invest media monies into the contest post, returns are rare. For a small to a mid-range brand, even the minimal budget would help. But this also nullifies the whole point of organic growth by contests. What could plausibly work on Facebook,  is to have a more consolidated approach where we could get an enormous number of people posting about a subject at the same time or within short intervals. The more conversations in a shorter period of time the better.

The idea is the promote your contest when once you realize it is on its path to success. In this arena, Instagram is a clear winner in the past year. On the contrary, the customer engagement in this platform has proven to have been 10x better than that of Facebook’s. TikTok has also had a steady stride into promotions and contests with its user base growing exponentially.

Designing a contest

Brands need to get creative with contests in a way that the target audience is involved in the content. Keeping the campaign simple is very important – get the details you want from the audience without being intrusive.

Details such as email ID, liking posts, commenting and resharing posts are the most ideal forms of contests. You can also use giveaways to explicitly collect feedbackreviews, or customer quotes to share on your social media channels. Following up with the contests and announcing the winners soon is important for the brand to prevent any hostility from the eager followers.

For example, a great way to get followers to join the giveaway contest is to ask them to tag their friends on social media to enter a contest. This would also involve a whole community being involved in the campaign and create a chain of more target audience that your brand was unaware of.

Here is an example of how Monika Manchanda announced a contest for Ashirwaad on her feed.

The above campaign is a perfect example of a good campaign. Not only did the brand get a very relevant influencer to talk about their campaign, but the influencer also displayed creativity and relevance by putting up a recipe of a sweet close to Diwali.

The tone of the influencer is casual and the contest is simple enough for the audience to engage. Who doesn’t like talking about their favorite sweets during Diwali? The prize is attractive – up to Rs.7000 Amazon gift vouchers.

Understanding your audience

While this tip comes with every campaign that a brand has to run, if you want to achieve your goals, then you need to know your audience. But let’s look at the nuances that a brand has to focus upon.

If you are targeting the millennial population, the brand has to consider that they are way more complex than the previous generation of consumers. Here is a set of people who prefer experiences more than monetary gifts. In fact, 72% of millennials prefer to spend more money on experience-related purchases. No wonder travel and experience giveaways are so popular. Know the demographic that you are targeting. Let’s say that you run a stationery brand that sells art materials. If your followers are mostly teenagers, running a contest that gives a cash prize or a vacation when they can’t travel alone doesn’t make sense. In this scenario, an event ticket to an art show or a set of expensive art supplies should do the trick. Once both you and your audience know exactly who you’re speaking to, you can keep them engaged by tying your promotion to events and trends that matter to your target market.

How to increase your brand contest engagement?

Now that your brand contest campaign is all set up, how can you push more of your target audience to engage? Here are some important tips to follow while running the campaign.

  1. Engage with the audience personally – All the followers love a personal touch. This is one of the prime reasons why influencer marketing campaigns do so well. Either the brand or the influencer can reply to comments or compliments on the post. Instagrammers get excited when they realize there is an actual person behind the brand’s social media account. A perfect follower of this would be Netflix on Instagram – the social media expert replies to a lot of fan comments with actual replies and not templates.

  2. Content, content and content – Having a high quality and a good looking image is so essential on social media where everything is a split-second decision by the user who has thousands of posts on their feed.

3. Keep the captions crisp and clear. Create a catchy hashtag for your contest.

4. Establish a relationship with the participants – Follow the winners, track the participants who often involve themselves with your brand. The brand can even ask them for future help in other giveaways. They can transform into your brand’s micro-influencer by reviewing your brand and encouraging their friends to try it.

Brand’s opinion

If contests and giveaways are done perfectly, a brand can achieve its marketing goals easily. Do you have questions about running an Instagram giveaway? Do let us know below in the comments or our Greenroom professionals can help you set up your campaign. You can also visit our FacebookTwitter or Instagram pages to reach out to us.

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