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How to Run Instagram Giveaways Effectively

Millions of businesses are vying for the attention of one billion active Instagram users. The tough competition, however, makes it challenging to establish your social media presence and increase your visibility on the platform. It’s not a hopeless case since many marketing tactics can make you stand out. 

There are proven and tested tactics for Instagram that you can use, such as: 

  • Regularly publishing your posts during high-traffic times
  • Using Instagram Stories and other features, and working with influencers in your target niche. 
  • Buy Instagram Followers and Likes
  • Running giveaways is also one of the killer Instagram marketing strategies to keep your followers and attract new ones. You offer an item for free to your followers in exchange for any pre-established action such as Instagram likes, comments, @tagging friends, or followers.

Take a look at this Instagram giveaway by @calligraphiewithliz:

How to Run Instagram Giveaways Effectively

Image: @calligraphiewithliz giveaway. Screenshot was taken on August 8, 2019

In just 11 hours, the post already garnered more than 1,000 likes and 3,300 comments. These are the things that make this giveaway work:

  • Collaboration: The Instagram account owner partnered with a brand, Zebra Pen Canada, for the giveaway. The brand posted the giveaway on their profile too, asking followers to check out Liz’s Instagram profile. 
  • Follow us: The giveaway requires people to follow both Liz and Zebra Pen’s Instagram accounts. This is an effective way to raise each of their follower counts. 
  • Tag your friends: Another requirement in the Instagram giveaway is for followers to tag their friends in the comments sections, and each comment is considered as an entry. The tactic works great in increasing engagement and in reaching out to people who are not yet following the account.

Keep these three things in mind when creating your own giveaway as they can help you attract new followers and keep your existing followers at the same time. The next section will further teach you how to run an Instagram giveaway.

More tips in running an Instagram giveaway

When doing a giveaway on Instagram, you will undoubtedly have to spend money on ads or influencers, especially if you don’t partner with a brand. Even when you do collaborate with another brand, you still need to invest your time and effort into running the event. To maximize your investments, it’s therefore important to do it correctly. These seven tips will help you.

Determine your goals in running the giveaway

Before you launch your Instagram giveaway or even get into the details of it, it’s important to define your goals first. What do you want to accomplish with the contest? Here are some of the goals you may have:

  • Increase website traffic.
  • Gain more followers.
  • Increase engagement rate.
  • Create awareness for your product or service.
  • Increase sales. 

The rules for your giveaway should ultimately depend on your goals. For instance, if you want to increase website traffic, you should put a website link in your bio and tell your followers to check it out. You can then place a form on your website that they need to fill out so they can qualify. If your goal is to boost engagement, one of the qualifying requirements should be for the followers to comment on your post. More comments mean more entries and more engagement. 

Choose the right prize for your target audience

Choosing the prize for your audience is one of the first things you need to do when planning to do a giveaway. This is ideally done after defining your goals. For example, if you want to raise awareness for your product, the prize should be the product. 

You may also partner with a brand and come up with a prize that your audience will be interested in, something they can’t say no to. The key to selecting a giveaway prize is to put your audience in mind. If you’re in the travel niche, your audience will be attracted to a hotel stay or a paid vacation. If you’re in the beauty niche, makeup products as a prize will make a lot of sense. 

Come up with a campaign-specific hashtag

Hashtags work very well on Instagram, perhaps even more than in other social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube. Aside from generic hashtags like #giveaway, you can use hashtags that are specific to your brand and niche. 

How to Run Instagram Giveaways Effectively

Image: @mymykaa givaway. Screenshot was taken on August 8, 2019

Look at the Instagram giveaway above. It uses general hashtags such as #giveaway and #contest, niche-specific hashtags like #skincare and #beauty, and brand-specific hashtags like #lotusorganics and #nykaa. Requiring people to use the #UniqueHashtagOfYourContest can also help you track entries.

Have some clear criteria for your contest

This is another area that will greatly depend on your goals. If you want to increase your follower count, then one of the criteria should be for the participants to follow you. If you want to raise awareness for your product or brand, then you should ask entrants to tag their friends in the comments section. 

Here are some Instagram giveaway ideas you can use:

  • Like to win.
  • Like and share to win.
  • Tag a friend to win.
  • Follow to win.
  • Photo contest using your brand’s hashtag.
  • “Caption this” contest.

Usual criteria that can be seen on Instagram are for the participants to follow the Instagram profile and its partner account (if the giveaway is in collaboration with another account), comment on the post, and tag their friends in the comment section. Others also require participants to regram the post using the campaign-specific hashtag. 

Collaborate with a brand or influencer

Collaboration is an effective marketing strategy on Instagram. You’ll see several popular influencers giving a shout-out to other, less famous influencers. Doing the same while running a giveaway is also very effective since you will be able to tap into the network of the other account. It’s also a great way to lessen expenditure, especially if you partner with a brand whose product will be the prize. 

Put a time limit on the giveaway

It’s important to state clearly how long the contest will run for. A specific date will be the best to avoid confusion and misunderstanding. “The giveaway will run until May 27th” is more specific and a lot clearer than “We will be giving away free tickets in the next 24 hours.”

The time limit encourages participants to act immediately on your criteria since it creates a sense of urgency. 

Promote the Instagram giveaway

When you launch your Instagram giveaway, keep in mind the day and time when most of your followers are online and active on the platform. This way, your post will immediately reach the majority of your audience. Union Metrics is a tool which can help find this time.

Promote your giveaway on other social media platforms and on your website too. If you partnered with a brand, make sure that they also promote the contest on their Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter accounts. 

How to pick a winner

Once the due date is reached, you can put “Giveaway Closed” in your caption and comment section to let everyone know that entries are no longer accepted. It’s now time to pick a winner, and sometimes this can be the most difficult task. How can you make sure that the way you pick a winner will be fair?

Thankfully, there are tools you can use to pick a random winner. Here are some suggestions:

  • Easypromo Sweepstakes App for Instagram: With the help of this app, you can filter the participants based on the number of tagged friends. Easypromo can randomly and automatically select between one and 1,000 winners and alternate winners. If you’re unsure how the app works, you can do a test run before finalizing the draw.

The app also allows you to generate a customizable certificate that guarantees that the draw was done in random. 

  • Free number generator: Simply search “random number generator” on Google, and the tech company’s own number generator will pop up. Put in “1” as the minimum number, and the total number of entries as the maximum number. The tool will then give you a random number. You may also use other random number generators.

Once you have that number, go to the comments section of the giveaway post and count downwards until you reach the comment that matches the random number. The person who left that comment will be the winner. 

This can be a tedious option, especially if there are thousands of entries.

  • Random name picker: This option is more suitable for contests that have a few entries since you need to compile all the names of the participants in a spreadsheet. Once you have that list, you can go to Miniwebtool.com, type in each username, and then click on the “Pick a name” button.

These three tools are some options to help you determine the random winner of your giveaway event. 

Instagram giveaway rules

Now that you have several Instagram giveaway ideas and you know how to pick a random winner, you must also know that Instagram has promotion rules you need to adhere to. You need to include a declaration along this line in your giveaway post: “This contest is in no way sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram, Inc. By entering, entrants confirm they are 13+ years of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to Instagram's terms of use.”

Make sure that you don’t ask participants to tag themselves or their friends on your photo (especially when they are not on it). This is considered as inaccurate tagging, and you can be penalized for this. Of course, you have to make sure that the products you give away are registered and not illegal.

Date: August 8, 2019 / Categories: Tips, / Author: Disturbinsilence


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