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How to run a winning Instagram contest and increase your followers

. 4 min read . Written by Vanshika Goenka
How to run a winning Instagram contest and increase your followers

91% of the posts with 1,000+ comments are contests

- Instagram statistic

For all active Instagram marketers, effective contests are essential for brand building, to create great engagement, and ensure impressive return on investment from social media. Through this article, we’ll tell you how to run a winning Instagram contest and increase your followers.

Every contest giveaway has a goal or objective in mind, ranging from driving more traffic to your page, enhancing your social media following, or growing your subscriber list. But here, it’s mentionable that you should have one specific goal instead of several goals. That’s because putting a contest giveaway into life requires many steps, the first of which is reading this article. Then, you have to download an app, and slowly the process itself becomes more overbearing than the Instagram contest itself.

When the contest becomes a maze instead of something that’s helpful, potential entrants might be scared or overwhelmed rather than grab the opportunity with both hands to enter the contest.

But there’s no denial that giveaways, contests, and sweepstakes are key to a good social media marketing plan. Posts that include a giveaway or a contest get 64 times more comments and 3.5 times more likes than an ordinary post. To sum it up, a business that engages in a contest giveaway grows its following 70% faster than one that doesn’t in just a span of 3 months. Wow!

What do you do before a Giveaway?

1. Set your Giveaway rules, restrictions, and incentives

It’s best to plan beforehand to avoid hiccups and legal issues. Consult your legal experts and read Instagram’s official rules and regulations so that you run a legal Instagram contest. Also, ask yourself the following questions before you hit first gear.

  • Who is eligible for the giveaway?
  • What are the registration steps?
  • When is the deadline for giveaway entries?
  • What is the incentive?

Make sure the date of the giveaway’s deadline is mentioned and also the time and time zone. Incentivise in such a manner that your followers are excited about the contest and are eagerly waiting for it to begin.

2. Use a third-party tool

To run your Instagram contest, you could use a third-party tool. To make sure everything goes well and is managed well consider taking assistance from a service like SweepWidget.

SweepWidget is a social media giveaway tool that manages the entire contest process for you. You can relax without any worries.

3. Brand collaborations

Collaborating with one or more brands (the more the merrier) to run an Instagram contest is a cool idea because it splits the marketing costs and the followers of the brands become your followers and vice versa, which is mutually beneficial.

4. Collaboration with influencers

Tying up with influencers on a giveaway enhances brand awareness, and increases engagement and follower count. Just like brand collaboration, this alliance is mutually favourable for both parties.

Case studies: Examples of a successful Instagram contest

1. Brand: Love One Today

What's impressive: The contest was easy to enter just like all Instagram hashtag contests. Here, all entrants needed to do was post an Instagram photo with the branded hashtag of the contest. The contest was great and effective and the use of voting increased engagement. The prizes on offer were cool, from a Vitamix blender, a food processor, and some avocado-themed merchandise.

The fact that Love One Today had multiple prizes on offer maximized their contest's conversion rate. The content was on brand as Love One Today provided valuable brand information in the PDFs on their contest page.

Key takeaways:

  • The contest was totally thematic as it was an avocado-themed contest run by an avocado-centric brand. That’s a great thought as the contest is kept on-brand which boosts brand identity, especially with people who are seeing the brand for the first time.
  • The contest platform Wishpond has been used by the brand (Love One Today) to build their contest. Entrants can enter the contest easily without hassles like filling out a form or being re-directed to another website.
  • The contest had over 20 prizes which not only makes entrants want to participate, but makes the contest appear winnable to them.

To conclude, the central idea behind the contest is praiseworthy as well. They got people to submit pictures of recipes incorporating avocados. How about that to build a stock of pertinent user-generated content? Sheer genius!

2. Brand: Oris Watches

Oris launched an exclusive Edition watch in partnership with Change for the Better, a men's health charity.

What's impressive: Not only was the content for a good cause, but Oris also aligned a cause that resonated perfectly with their target audience - men’s wellbeing.

They also added a video to the page that explained the contest and the cause behind it. This made it easier for potential entrants to understand what the contest and brand were all about. The communication was bang on.

Key takeaways:

Instead of giving away a $6,000 Swiss watch, Oris gave away some awesome accessories, like a weekend bag and a few fountain pens, thus keeping the budget well under control. Oris proved that a great central idea in a contest is more important than giving away expensive stuff.

To conclude, the goal of a winning Instagram contest is to drive a positive ROI. Tying your contest to the promotion of a product/brand/service ensures that you will be able to maximise the number of entrants you convert and increase your follower count subsequently.

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