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Luisana Cartay
Luisana Cartay 3 May 2016

7 Tips To Successfully Leverage An Instagram Contest

Instagram lends itself perfectly to user-generated content campaigns. Users are already sharing their photos and videos on the platform. If your brand can find a way to direct those existing interests and habits, you can engage Instagram users in a fun and meaningful way.

A few years ago, brands may have written off Instagram as just another app for hipsters or foodies or fashionistas.

Not anymore.

the-value-of-instagram-contests-(1).jpg

With a global community of 400 million active monthly users, 80 million photos shared daily and 3.5 billion likes per day, Instagram is a force to be reckoned with. Its user base is growing steadily stronger, with 26% of online adults using it (up from 17% in late 2013). And 53% of young adults, ages 18-29, are Instagram users.

Instagram is important, and brands should be utilizing it and taking advantage of its natural strengths.

The Value of Instagram Contests

Instagram lends itself perfectly to user-generated content campaigns. Users are already sharing their photos and videos on the platform. If your brand can find a way to direct those existing interests and habits, you can engage Instagram users in a fun and meaningful way.

Incorporating Instagram contests into your marketing strategy can help you expand your reach, increase your followers and build loyal brand ambassadors. In this article, we’ll dive deeper into what makes an Instagram contest successful – and how you can apply the best practices to benefit your brand.

How to Design a Successful Instagram Contest

Keep these seven tips in mind as you start to plan an Instagram contest, and set yourself up for success.

Download the checklist to successfully organize Instagram contests

1. Ask Why?

So you want to launch an awesome Instagram contest. Fantastic!

Why?

This may seem like an obvious question, but you’d be surprised by how often it gets neglected until far too late in the planning process.

2. Pick the Type of Contest

Here are a few examples of how you could structure a photo contest:

  • Follower contest: Encourage Instagram users to follow your brand’s account during a set period of time to be entered to win.
  • Like/comment contest: Ask users to like or comment on your photo to be entered to win.
  • Photo challenge contest: Tell users to post photos to their Instagram accounts that fit a certain theme, sharing with a contest-specific hashtag.

Define your audience, and make sure that this contest also fits their interests. What would catch their attention? What’s in it for them? Why would they want to participate?

3. Define the Rules Clearly

Write out the rules for participation. How long and complicated are they? Could you explain them in 15 seconds to someone who knows nothing about your contest? If not, simplify them until they’re easy to understand and explain quickly. Remember that you only have a limited amount of space to get your message across, and Instagram users have a short attention span.

Set the dates for your Instagram contest. Is it a one-time competition? A weekly giveaway? An annual event? When will you announce the winners?

4. Pick a Hashtag

Creating a unique hashtag for your Instagram contest is essential. You want a hashtag that’s clear, branded and memorable, so users can recall it easily and you can track it accurately.

5. Launch and Promote

Once the design is done and the marketing plan is in place, you’re ready for takeoff. Make the contest live, and promote it like crazy – on your website, on all your social channels, through your email list, through your PR people.

6. Track Results

Using the metrics for success you laid out in the very beginning as guidelines, track and analyze your contest’s progress. Are people engaging the way you hoped they would? Are you going to meet your projected goals?

7. Celebrate and Follow-up

Once you choose a winner, shout it from the social media rooftops. Announce it on Instagram first, then on your company blog and other social platforms. Make it a big deal so your winner feels special (and encouraged to become your brand ambassador in turn).

To finally integrate all of the collected UGC into your brand marketing campaign and even directly into your website, a visual marketing platform such as Photoslurp is commonly used, that simplifies the whole process allowing you to get the most out of your UGC contest.

Do an internal debrief right after the contest is over. What went well? What could be better next time? What did you learn?

To read the full article and see the Analysis of 6 well-designed Instagram contests HERE

Author: Gillian Burgess

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