5 Effective Social Media Contest Ideas to Increase Engagement

by Bistriti Poddar |

In order to thrive in a competitive landscape, businesses need engaged customers. Shoppers who engage with a brand daily are 2x more likely to make more purchases than others. The easiest way to engage with customers and go viral is through social contests. Social media has become an inseparable part of consumers’ daily activities. Users are accustomed to engaging with brands on social media through likes, shares, retweets and more. Reboot your marketing efforts with interesting and innovative social media contests.

Social contests take it a step further to get social followers to become brand advocates and drive engagement, traffic and conversions. Engaged social followers are more likely to buy from, prefer and recommend your brand. Social contests are a great way to increase your brand awareness and follower base through minimal effort. According to research, posts that are related to Instagram contests gain usually 64x more comments and 3.5x more likes when compared to ‘normal’ content. Social media contests help in boosting the right kind of buzz around your community and get your followers engaging with your content. Almost any way to run a contest will lead to your brand getting additional visibility and more audience insight. It’s also important to follow the best practices and set your goals and articulate the rules and also follow a theme to generate excitement in your followers. Your goals need to be properly aligned with how you run your social contest.

Here are 5 social media contest ideas to drive engagement:

  • Vote contest – If you want to drive interaction across social media channels and create long term customer relationships, a simple way is to run a vote contest. Successfully spread the word about your brand via voting contests. For an effective campaign and as a part of a good marketing strategy, set goals and determine the outcomes. Often voting contests help you gain customer insights and better your product development. Make voting contests that resonate with your customer lifestyle or interests or relate to your product. Get creative with your content. Contest frequency acts as a touchpoint, so post vote contests consistently. In most cases, in order to entice entrants, introduce brand related rewards. To further market your contest, cross promote it on various other social media channels or write a blog about it or email your customers about it.
  • Photo contest – Not only do photo contests increase engagement, they also promote your brand. They are also a great way to gather user generated content to use as a social proof. Running a photo contest with a specific hashtag brings all your entries together and more and more people may want to enter the contest. Whatever you ask your participants to do, make sure the photo contest ties into your brand and they can easily produce photos. You must have clearly written rules in the beginning itself about who’s eligible, how to enter and any additional requirements. Send a contest announcement out to your promotional database, post the contest link to Facebook, send out links on Twitter, pin a promotional image to Pinterest, and so on. It’s important to determine what you can offer as a prize, it could be a discount off your product or service, or a free deal or just feature your winning photos on the website. As a smart marketer, you should include a simple registration form so that you can collect valuable insights and data from the participants.
  • Video contest – Video contests are a proven method to increase engagement, conversion and reach. According to a recent WordStream post, 82% of Twitter users watch video content on Twitter and 45% of people watch more than an hour of Facebook or YouTube videos a week. Creating video contests is a great way to create a more collaborative experience. As a matter of fact, we tend to process videos faster and retain the video information longer. Users are more inclined towards creating heart warming useful videos versus other formats because it’s easier and less time consuming. Videos are also easily shared leading to more brand visibility, thus having a proper marketing plan to create the buzz is crucial. Video contests let you gain more insights into what your customers are thinking about and interested in and how their lifestyle fits into what you have to offer. They also improve your relationships with customers and help build an effective follower base. All it takes is a great reward and a video prompt and you’ll get submissions in no time. Videos are short enough to keep people’s attention intact and are extremely shareable leading to easy viral content. With a video contest on social networks, you get new audiovisual content generated by your followers, for the rest of your followers. You can then use that content for your brand’s actions.
  • Tag to win – All you are doing is asking your followers to tag a friend in the comments section so that they are also eligible to enter the contest and can win with you. This is a great way to increase your organic reach of the page. To make the process more impactful, you can ask people to also follow your account in addition to tagging someone. After the contest ends, announce the winner and show gratitude to all the entrants.
  • Trivia contest – A social media contest can also be a simple set of questions where you encourage people to participate and answer those. Ask a trivia question on Twitter or Facebook about your business or an interest area that appeals to your followers. Then offer relevant rewards or prize to a follower who answers the question correctly first within the deadline.

Businesses are constantly looking for ways to engage users and get customers to keep coming back. Social has solidified their necessity as a crucial part of every marketing strategy. With growing competition, try effective contests to increase your followers.

For more than 10 years, Annex Cloud has been the worldwide leader in technology and service solutions that transform customer loyalty experiences for organizations, extending valued customer engagement, and collecting valuable customer information for enabling data-led strategies. Powered by the comprehensive and scalable Loyalty Experience Platform™, Annex Cloud customers capture and use zero- and first-party data to seamlessly deliver hyper-personalized experiences across the entire customer journey – from awareness to purchase to retention, loyalty, and advocacy. Brands partner with us to take advantage of our robust platform capabilities as well as get industry expert recommendations that help ensure utmost engagement with the sweepstakes. The company is recognized by industry respected organizations like Gartner and Forrester and integrates with 100+ market-leading technologies. Get in touch with us today!

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