Social media contests can spur audience engagement and increase enrollment in your online content streams, but when mishandled, they create a lot of added expense and effort without contributing significantly to your bottom line. Follow these tips to ensure your social media contests provide a good return on investment (ROI).
1. Social Media Contests Need Clear Goals for a Target Audience
When trying to get noticed online, your company may be tempted to offer big prizes with widespread attraction. However, this will encourage a lot of participation from those outside your target audience who merely sign on for the chance to win your prize but never have an interest in becoming a customer. Here again, not all goals are aimed at customer acquisition. Your company may seek to stock its site with content, and photo or essay submissions from a variety of sources might then suit your purposes. Take the time to identify your goals, choose a target audience, and then offer a prize aligned with your purpose.
2. Follow Laws Applicable to Social Media Contests
Facebook has strict guidelines about what is permitted when running a contest on its platform. In addition, state and federal laws apply to contests and sweepstakes and may govern the actions you can require of entrants. Many companies find that a third-party app from a company like Wildfire or Woobox helps to ensure their contests do not run afoul of Facebook or other social media platform conventions.
3. Consider Small, Targeted Prizes for Social Media Contests
As mentioned above, attracting a large volume of entrants unlikely to go on to become customers can be counterproductive for your purposes and will chip away at your ROI. Choosing prizes closely matched to your services and your ideal customer may restrict the reach of your social media contests but can actually lead to more customer acquisitions because those attracted will more closely align with your goals. Smaller, targeted prizes will fly right under the radar of those looking for a freebie while allowing your company to run contests more often.
4. Use Social Media Contests To Spur Engagement
With a clear goal and targeted prizes, your social media contests can spur engagement. When customers submit content to enter a contest and the entries are posted online, these entrants will often share links across their social platforms to increase a contest’s reach and attract new customers. Frequent opportunities to participate in your promotions will help some of these customers grow to become brand advocates. Take care not to overdo it though–too much promotion of any sort gets old after awhile and will cause your audience to ignore your updates or sever their connection to your broadcasts. However, when woven into stream with a variety of messages relevant to your audience, social media contests with clear goals and targeted prizes are great for increasing your customer base and its engagement with your brand.