- Appeal to Prospective Customers and Not Just Entrants
The first step in creating an effective social media contest is designing one that appeals to your target audience. You could do this by adding labels to your contest copy that address your target audience. For example, a clothing store could say “Are you a Winter Fashionista? Enter to win your dream winter coat!”
You could also do this by choosing prizes that are of value to your target market. If you are a retailer you could give away a voucher or coupon instead of a prize, such as a woman’s coat, as this will exclude most men. A grocery store could offer R1500 worth of groceries which would appeal to their target market.
- Offer an Incentive for Social Sharing
A good way to spread to reach and word of your contest and increase your social media following is through incentivized sharing and liking. This involves giving contest entrants an increased chance of winning in return for a share of the contest page, a retweet or a like of your social media page. You could also create a referral contest, where people get an extra entry when they refer someone else.
With a photo or Instagram contest, entrants are required to either submit their photo manually or with a brand hashtag (E.g. #KodakPics). Yu could then add the photos to a gallery within the contest page, and award a prize to the entrant whose photo received the highest number of votes. Entrants are then encouraged to share the contest to get people to vote, thus creating a wider reach for your contest.
- Promote Your Contest with Paid Social Ads
If your social media following is not yet as large as you would like then you may need to also incorporate some paid ads into your contest instead of just relying on your entrants to help promote the contest. With paid ads, you can target people based on their demographics and interests with the aim of reaching people who would want to enter your contest and follow your social page.
- Follow Up with Prize-Related Discounts in an Email Campaign
Once the contest is over it is time to start turning entrants into customers by using email marketing. You can now make use of the email addresses you received from contestants that entered your competition, and provide them with coupons for entering, further information on your products related to the contest and notify them of any specials you are running, especially if they are related to the prizes they were trying to win.
A well-designed contest that leverages on the strengths of social media and the power it has to reach many people provides a great opportunity to generate real value for your business.
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