• Haley Mills

Hosting a Giveaway on Instagram

Hosting a giveaway on Instagram might seem like a daunting challenge but with a little bit of preparation, it can be easy to accomplish! Your giveaway should center around your brand or the message you are trying to portray. Find an item you enjoy using, or a brand you like to shop and reach out to see if they would be interested in joining you for a giveaway. I like to seek out other small businesses that will benefit from the exposure - they are more likely to say yes.

Another way to frame your giveaway is around a specific blog post or Instagram picture. For example, write up a local product gift guide around the holidays and theme your giveaway around releasing the blog post to the public.

Once you have your content written and your items secure, it's time to come up with the terms of your giveaway. You'll need to decide what you want the contest to accomplish. Ideas for entrants to actively participate in the giveaway include:

  • Grow your following - have users follow all tagged accounts (if you are giving away multiple items)

  • Grow your following/generate more engagements - Tagging a friend(s) in the comments

  • Generate more engagements - Commenting (favorite item in the giveaway, favorite person to attend events with, ect.)

  • Get more website traffic/generate more engagements - Send them to your content and ask them to pick a favorite item, comment on the writing, etc.

  • Produce User Generate Content - Having participants share their own user generated content and tagging you to win (keep in mind, this usually requires a large following)

Give users bonus points for sharing the post to their feed or story... this boosts your contests exposure which you will want considering: Instagram doesn't like when you post giveaways and will most likely not let you boost your content with terms like giveaway in the caption (a huge bummer, we know). You must also make sure you release Instagram from the terms of your giveaway or they may delete your post or suspend your account ("This contest has no association with Instagram beyond being hosted on the platform").

I have a few ways I like to pick winners depending on the amount of interaction and the giveaway on hand.

  • I like to comment back to each individual user (when applicable) and take this opportunity to see what their page looks like. I like to look for users who seem willing to share that they have won and seem willing to promote the items they win after the contest is over (increased exposure). Pages lacking in updated content or quality content might not bring you added exposure after the contest ends.

  • If you have a lot of entrants or are having trouble picking one user, add all of the handles to a google sheet and use googles random number generator to pick a user for you!

Make sure to clearly announce your winner across any platform you've run the contest. I also like to update the captions to let people know the contest has ended. It should appear first so people can clearly see they are no longer eligible to win. What are some of your favorite giveaways that you've entered? Have you ever won a giveaway?

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