10 tips for creating a social media contest!

business, communication, competition, contests, marketing, powersofsocialmedia, promotion, socialmedia, socialmediamarketing, win


Running a social media contest is a great way to boost your businesses presence, increase your list of email subscribers, get new Twitter and Facebook likes, and create a fun experience in the process.

Outlined in this blog are 10 recommendations for you to next consider when creating your next successful social media contest!

1. Know what you want
Are you trying to get newsletter subscriptions, expose certain products/ services, gain brand recognition, or drive up Facebook fans? Knowing what your goals are will help guide the process.

2. Choose the type of contest you want to have
Its important to decide what contest you are going to run for example:

  • Sweepstakes contests are the easiest to enter, with the lowest barrier of entry.
  • Photo or video contests with fan votes get the most engagement.
  • Caption contests or quiz contests are often successful.
  • Winners can be randomly selected, picked by you or a panel of judges you select, or voted on by other readers etc.

3. Decide how long the contest will run
Determining how long the contest will run is important. If you don`t have a huge budget but just want to spur some engagement, you can  do flash contests, which are often one day contests done weekly/ fortnightly. These contests bring small bursts of engagement without being to costly.

4. Choose a platform 
Decide whether you want the contest to run on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc. Choose one and stick to it, though you can still cross-promote your contest on other social networks its important to keep a focus with the ease of monitoring.

5. Create a plan for artwork
Depending on which platform you use, you may need to set aside some time and resources to create artwork for the contest. Some images need to be customised for different platforms.

6. Make sure the contest is targeted 
Ensuring the prize your giving away is closely related to what your business offers is crucial. If you can get people to show their loyalty to a brand, that’s going to get more targeted people.

7. Make it sticky 
You can provide motivation in the form of extra contest entries for those who share your contest on social media, but nobody wants to share a boring contest. Increase the “stickiness” by making it fun and engaging even for those who don`t win. An interesting contest gets shared more, whether you combine it with incentives in the form of added entries or not.

8. Promote the contest 
No matter how great the giveaway, your content won`t promote itself. Consider using paid options on Facebook, Twitter and other platforms to help spread the word. Using hashtags for the contest is often effective.


9. Keep people`s attention with other content
No matter what the contest, some people will sign up for the prize and opt out as soon as the contest is over. However, if the contest is done well, they`ll be exposed to a bit of your brand throughout the process.

Yes, you want to promote the contest, but while you`re doing the contest you have their attention. Use that opportunity to integrate your brand messages into the contest – whether it`s adding product information that may catch people`s attention into the contest itself or throwing other posts to your Facebook page with interesting information about your brand.

10. Have clear contest rules
One big takeaway is that some people will cheat, so ensuring strict and clear contest rules is important to promote.


Do you have plans for a social media contest to help your business?

Share any tips you have in the comments.


2 thoughts on “10 tips for creating a social media contest!

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