Running a social media competition is a brilliant way to attract and engage audiences, grow awareness of a product and increase purchase intent from potential customers. They can also be used to build an email list, drive traffic to your website or simply to reward your customers. So what do you need to do to plan, create and run a successful social media competition? Read on to explore our top tips.
the prizeSecuring a prize is the first, and arguably the most important, thing you need to do. It needs to be appealing enough to catch your audience’s attention and make them want to enter. The prize should be one of your products, or rooted in your brand in some way – for example, a gym could give away workout clothes and a free session, or a train company might provide a weekend stay in one of its destinations. You also need to decide whether you’ll be giving away one prize, or a few for runners-up too. Offering a range of prizes is a great way to involve other businesses, so will help to increase the reach of the competition. It’s also an effective way to engage new audiences, and also to align your brand with others – for example, partnering with an established local magazine could help a new restaurant gain exposure and kudos.
the mechanicThere’s generally one hard and fast rule here: keep things simple. In most instances, an overly complicated entry method will put people off; instead, you should aim to make things as easy as possible to maximise entries. Here are some of the most common mechanics:
- Ask users to engage with a Facebook, Instagram or YouTube post by liking or commenting. This can be particularly effective on Facebook, as it means your competition post is more likely to be favoured by the algorithm, which now looks for content that is generating discussion.
- When running an Instagram competition in partnership with another brand, consider asking entrants to follow both of your accounts. This is a great way to grow your audiences and is a simple step for your entrants to take.
- Asking users to tweet using a competition hashtag is a common mechanic on Twitter, and can be also used on Instagram
- Sharing a post or @tagging friends on Facebook
- Entrants tagging themselves in an Instagram photo in which they do not appear
- Retweeting content multiple times on Twitter e.g., “whoever Retweets this the most wins”
- Requiring people to save a specific image or allowing more than one entry per person on Pinterest