Social media plays an important role in our society today, for better or worse. Not only is it a place for people to connect, but it’s always a great vehicle for brands to reach their target audience, which is why social media marketing is something every brand should consider if they want to grow their business and online presence. If you start to look into social media marketing, you’ll see a lot about giveaways, but what exactly is a social media giveaway, do they work, and how can brands successfully do them? Our social media experts break it down for you.
What is a Social Media Giveaway?
A giveaway is just as it sounds. Brands offer to give away their product or service for free, sometimes in combination with another brand’s goods, in exchange for users following them and engaging with their content. It’s essentially a way for businesses to increase their online following and drive engagement.
Giveaways sound simple in concept but doing them right takes a bit of nuance. Doing a poorly giveaway can result in wasted product, bad PR, and even get you flagged by social media platforms.
What are the Benefits of Social Media Giveaways?
Giveaways have many benefits, but whether they’re worth it depends on what a business wants from its social media marketing campaign. Here are a few of the benefits of giveaways:
- Grow online following
- Increase brand awareness
- Reach new users
- Entice people to try your goods
- Engage with followers
- Allows people to try your goods
- Promotes products
Tips for Running Social Media Giveaways
If your business is interested in running a social media giveaway, here are a few tips you should follow to ensure success.
Make it Worth it
In order for a giveaway to be successful, your business needs to be offering a prize that’s actually worth users participating in it. Social media is saturated with brands, companies, and influencers all trying to promote themselves too. Users are pickier these days about which ones they engage with, so if you’re trying to attract new followers, make sure you’re giving them a reason to. This is when doing a co-giveaway with other brands can really come in handy, as it makes the prize bigger without just one business having to pony it all up.
Create Good Content
Content is king on social media, and that is true when it comes to giveaways. You want to make sure your post announcing it is visually appealing to attract users. Our social media managers suggest showing off the prize in the post, but you can also do a video or graphic. Don’t forget about the caption too! The caption should give all the relevant giveaway information, but also be in the voice of your brand and catchy.
Stick to One Social Platform
Giveaways are simple, but sometimes brands make them overly complicated for themselves by trying to run one giveaway across multiple platforms. This makes it tricky when it comes time to select a winner. We highly recommend sticking with one platform at a time. Instagram is the primary place people run giveaways, but Facebook, YouTube, and TikTok are also options. This doesn’t mean you can’t promote the giveaway on other social media platforms, just make it clear in the rules what platform you’ll be selecting the winner from.
Establish Clear Rules
One of the most important things about running a giveaway is establishing clear rules. Users need to know how they can participate to win, who is eligible to participate, and what they’ll be winning. Try to keep the rules super simple so that there is no room for interpretation. Clarify everything from the prize to geographical limitations.
Here are some things you should include in the rules:
- What the giveaway prize is
- How to participate (most giveaways follow the same three basic rules 1-Follow select accounts, 2- Like the post, 3-Tag a certain number of people in the comments)
- When the giveaway starts and ends
- If there are any geographic or age restrictions
- How many entries are allowed
We recommend including a brief description of the brand and giveaway prize somewhere in the caption as well. Also, don’t forget to post this disclaimer so that Instagram doesn’t flag your giveaway: Giveaway promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Instagram.
Don’t just post your giveaway once and forget about it. Make sure you continue to promote it until it ends to encourage people to participate. If your goal is to reach new users and grow your following, you should consider boosting it as an ad to expand the reach.
A lot of brands and influencers have gotten into trouble in the past because they don’t end up following through on their giveaways. Either the winners are never announced, or the prizes don’t get delivered. Not only does this result in bad PR, but it also destroys any trust users have in your brand. Make sure you follow through on your giveaways. Announce the winners, reach out to them via DMs, and make sure they get their prizes.
Don’t do it too Often
Our social media managers notice that once brands start to realize the traction their giveaways get, they want to do more of them. There can be too much of a good thing, though. If your business is constantly giving people the option to get your goods for free, they’re going to be less inclined to go out and purchase it on their own. Too many giveaways can also cheapen or make your brand feel sketchy. We recommend limiting giveaways to once every 1-2 months or less.
If you’re looking for more giveaway tips or need the help of expert social media managers to grow your business online, contact Hilborn Digital today! We’re one of the best digital marketing agencies in the GTA and have a team of social media professionals ready to help.