There are a few kinds of giveaways that you can host. It could be a sweepstake, a contest, or a competition, but remember that a sweepstake is the only giveaway that is based on chance. Before you create your promotional giveaway, don’t forget to read the Facebook Promotion Guidelines.
Steps to Hosting your own Social Media Giveaway
Through research and experience, there are some steps in coordinating a social media giveaway to help you along the way.
Define your Marketing Goals
First things first, define your marketing goals. Whether you are coordinating a giveaway merely to increase brand awareness or to get more friends on Facebook, it is good to know what you want to accomplish before you press “share”.
Define your Audience
Who is your target market? You need to know who you are promoting to, to understand how to create your giveaway. If your audience is not interactive, then asking them to do a lot of work for the giveaway will not be successful. If your audience is very engaging, you can ask them to submit videos of themselves, post pictures, write essays, etc. Knowing who will be participating in your giveaway is one of the most important steps to coordinating a successful contest or sweepstake.
Define your Budget
Before you get online and promote your giveaway to your customers/potential customers, you want to know how much you can spend. If your allowance doesn’t support a big product giveaway, you can always give services, ipads, cash, coupons, or even a consultation. If you are a B2B company, you can even offer to give away free promotion to the winner.
When hosting a giveaway, remember that you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to run an effective contest or sweepstake.
Leverage Social Media Channels
After you decide on your actual giveaway (what you want to give away and how you want people to enter), you want to choose the channels of promoting the contest. There are a few outlets like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn- sometimes you can even use more than one. Decide on how you want your audience to enter (email, write a post on your Facebook wall, mention [@] your profile on your Twitter status, reply to your post on LinkedIn, or upload a picture and tag your company).
Finish the Giveaway
Give your giveaway a time limit. At the end of your contest or sweepstake, find a winner (judging or by chance) and announce them as a Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn status, send an email/message on Facebook, or create a video announcing the winner.
Measure the Results
As you can see, there are various ways to host your own giveaway, but was it worth it? Track your website page visits to see if they increased, see if your sales have increased after the promotion, and monitor your social media after the giveaway to see if more people are interacting or “following” you online.
PSA Social Media Sweepstake Example
During PSA-TEC 2011, PSA coordinated a sweepstake for show attendees. Different PSA employees walked around the convention area all week long wearing fox ears and/or fox tail (to represent me, Pixel, the PSA mascot), and attendees had to take a picture of the ears or tail and post it on Facebook, Twitter, or Flickr (a site to share images). All participants’ names were then written on little pieces of paper and thrown in a bowl where we randomly pulled a name on a PSA TV video and posted to all social media sites. We also contacted the winner via email to figure out where to send his prize of $100 VISA gift card. Not only did this sweepstake create a fun environment at PSA-TEC, but increased awareness to our social media sites, which was the goal all along.
Keep an eye out for future PSA social media giveaways. You never know when you could be the next winner!
To get more information and tools to use, visit Facebook Promotions: What You Need to Know from SocialMediaExaminer.com