Social Media Contest – 8 Ideas to Engage Your Customers

Social media has changed the way brands interact with their customers. From telling your brand story to giving a taste of your brand personality, you can use your social media pages in so many ways. And running a social media contest is one of the most popular strategies that many brands use. Planning a contest for your page? We have all the information you might need.

Contests and giveaways are pretty easy to organize these days. The key is to be clear about the expected outcome of the contest. Do you want people to notice your brand or talk about it in their social circles? Do you want them to purchase a new product or start following your brand on more social media channels? Once you are clear about these goals, planning a social media contest becomes simple. And we also have some contest ideas you can try for your brand. But before that let’s also talk about some of the benefits of conducting an online social media contest. 

Social Media Contest – Benefits For Businesses 

When you are going to be investing your time and money into a strategy it is important to know why that step is important. Knowing the benefits will help you understand if that idea will be suitable for your business. So, before we give you some ideas and examples of social media contests from big brands let’s tell you how these contests can add more value to your marketing efforts. 

1. An icebreaker for a new kid on the block 

As a new brand stepping into an established market, you should be taking the first step. You can use social media contests as icebreakers. You can use them to initiate conversations with perspective leads. 

In the early stages when your target audience still does not know much about your brand they might not always be ready to hit that follow button. Especially when they see that the follower count is still low. They might not yet have a reason to believe that your brand is worth their time. A social media contest can act as a tool to change this opinion. It can give them a reason to interact with your brand when it’s new. 

2. Increase your social media following 

Brands with a huge following on social media as well as new businesses that are trying to establish their social media presence both need to continuously work on increasing their follower count. Social media contests provide an organic way to do this. 

When you conduct a themed social media contest relevant to your brand and when you are clear about the objectives of the contest, you can increase the number of followers for your page. These would be people who are interested in your brand and so you have a set of potential leads worth nurturing. After all, identifying relevant leads can be one of the most challenging tasks for any brand. And social media contests can be of help there. 

Social media design by Kimp 
3. Strengthen brand awareness 

There are many ways to build your social media following. But when you do this through a contest, you are adding relevant followers. This comes from existing followers (who are people who already expressed interest in your brand) tagging their friends who they think will like the brand too.

Will you believe a random brand you see online or a brand that your friend talks about on social media? The latter, right? It’s natural for consumers to find it easier to trust a brand they see on their friend’s Story or post on social media. Nearly 83% of consumers are more likely to go with recommendations from their friends and family when it comes to making a purchase decision. 

So, if you get your followers to share your post or talk about your social media contest on their pages then you are increasing your brand awareness. 

4. Drive traffic to your other channels 

Every social media platform works differently. So, a post that works on one channel might not necessarily bring similar results on another. But then creating a different post for each channel might not really be an easy task for a small brand. So, if one of your social media pages has been performing well, you can use that page to promote your other social media channels. 

For example, if you have a good number of followers on Instagram, you can use it to add to your YouTube subscriber count. And to achieve this you can run a social media contest where one of the rules is for the participants to subscribe to your YouTube channel. 

In the below example, the creator’s Twitter page is used as a traffic driver to the corresponding Telegram channel. 

Now that we have spoken about a few benefits let’s get to the more interesting details – social media contest ideas! 

Social Media Contest Ideas for Brands & Examples 

1. A contest to build product awareness 

When you have a new product coming up, you can use social media contests to create anticipation for the product before the launch. This includes talking about the product features and what makes it special. In short, focus on the unique selling point for the product. 

The below social media contest by Doritos was designed to focus on the Doritos Flame Grilled Steak. Customers simply had to comment with a flame emoji to enter the contest. Since the rule is simple, posts like these garner a lot of engagement. And the emoji itself tells customers about the product being promoted. 

Kimp Tip: Doritos uses a simple static loop in the above post. Such short animations work really well, especially when you have to create something interactive but not distracting, and therefore the idea works well for contest posts. 

Want to create animated social media posts for promoting your social media contest? Sign up for a Kimp Video subscription today. 

2. Content-related contest

One of the easiest and the most common ideas for social media contests is asking your audience to share content. This can be in the form of photos, essays, artwork, slogans, captions, and more. 

Social media design by Kimp 

Once your customers use the relevant hashtag and share the content tagging your brand page, you can give a shoutout to all or some of the posts based on the contest rules you set. By featuring the content creator, you are acknowledging their effort and measures like these strengthen brand loyalty. 

3. Use contests to strengthen your brand image 

Making efforts towards sustainability, contributing to a charitable cause and several other measures strengthen a brand’s reputation. In the below contest GoodWill initiates a discussion on sustainability. Ideas like these connect with almost all kinds of demographics. 

People love discussing sustainability and they love interacting with responsible brands. So, contests like these work in favor of your brand and help strengthen your brand image. 

4. Gamification can make things more interesting 

Tagging, commenting, and sharing are all great for engagement. But if you wish to give customers an instant sense of gratification, gamification is your answer. That’s why many brands present a quiz, sweepstakes, or other types of gamified content to users entering the social media contest. 

Besides online contests, you can use gamification regularly in many places in marketing. This helps in regularly interacting with your customers. For more ideas on how to use gamification to elevate your marketing efforts, check out our blog here

5. Connect a lead capture landing page 

One of the most effective ways to utilize social media contests is to use them to enrich your customer database. For example, you can add a lead capture landing page where customers enter their contact details like email id in order to register for the contest. These are going to customers who express interest in your brand. So, they will make valuable leads to add to your email marketing list. In fact, 33% of contest participants are more willing to receive information from the brand. These are people who will not find your marketing emails to be intrusive and uncalled for. 

Social media design by Kimp 

Of course, to make this work, you need to make the contest reward relevant to your target audience and minimize the effort they have to take in order to enter the contest. Having multiple rewards is another great way to convince customers that there is a good chance of them winning the prize. 

Kimp Tip: When you create a landing page for the sake of your contest keep them visually cohesive. If your landing page aesthetics and your contest post aesthetics do not match then your customers might not be sure if they are in the right place. And use your landing page to provide all the additional details about the contest so that your leads will be convinced to provide the information requested on the page. 

With a Kimp Graphics subscription, all your promotional designs including social media posts and landing pages will be designed by your designated design team. So, you can be sure that all the designs for a particular campaign look connected. 

6. Contests with gift cards as the reward 

Many customers are introduced to brands on social media but not many of them make the first move and make a purchase. One good way to help customers set their doubts aside and try your products will be to run contests where customers get gift cards to purchase from your brand. 

In the below contest, Colour Pop Cosmetics uses two contest strategies in one contest – giving away gift cards and partnering with relevant brands. This way both the brands gain a better following and the winners end up trying both brands. 

7. Use product rewards to boost the sale of profitable products

This idea is very similar to the gift card reward idea but here you directly give away products in focus. If there is a hero product, a profitable product you wish to promote more or you need to convince customers to try a new product, then you can use your social media contest as an opportunity for this. 

Giving your own products as the reward for the contest can be a much better option rather than giving a random gadget. By giving the winner free products you are already creating a touchpoint. If you use this chance and impress the customer with your product quality and impressive packaging, they are sure to come back and purchase from your brand. They might even share their experience on social media and recommend your brand to their friends and family. 

8. Build customer loyalty through contests 

Long-term perks are great ways to build customer loyalty. Getting customers to sign up for your loyalty program in order to enter the contest or giving them coupons and exclusive privileges for them to use over a course of time will be creative ways to warrant continuous engagement. 

The below contest by Glossier rewards the winner and a friend with one year’s supply of products from the brand. This is a good way to boost customer loyalty. 

Make Your Social Media Contest Work With Designs From Kimp 

Coming up with a contest idea is easy. The above examples and inspiration from many more big brands can give you direction. But what really matters is the execution of your idea. From the main post where you announce the social media contest to the Story posts and promoted posts, you use to bring your audience to the contest page or custom landing page, every piece of promotional graphics matters. They should all be unified by a theme. There should all be directed toward one common objective. And they should all be on-brand. That’s when your contest makes a difference. For all this, it can be really helpful if you have a dedicated design team working on all your promotional graphics for the social media contest. So, choose a Kimp subscription. We also have a risk-free 7-day free trial