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Planning a promotion or competition for your product, service or brand? Before you race off to announce your competition to your adoring fans, here are 6 things you should consider when planning your competition.

Take these on board and you’ll be on to a winner from the outset. Yes, we went there with the winner puns.

1. Instagram is more engaging than Facebook.

If you’re not promoting your competition on Instagram (especially if your brand is big on visuals) you may be missing a trick. Pretty much all the research agrees that Instagram is far more engaging than Facebook:

  • Forrester research tells us that 2.26% of followers interact with brands on Instagram vs just 0.21% of Facebook fans making Instagram ten times more engaging than Facebook
  • Locowise’s Instagram analysis concluded that Instagram’s engagement is 70% higher than Facebook’s engagement
  • … and research compiled by WebStrategies shows that Instagram boasts consistently higher engagement with followers regardless of industry or follower size

OK, so the stats may not agree on precisely how much more engaging Instagram is than its parent company, Facebook; but it’s clear that Instagram wins when it comes to engagement.

This doesn’t mean you have to run your competition entirely on Instagram though, just make sure you post a couple of really obvious ‘grams letting people know what they can win, how to enter and where to find your competition, then watch your comments – and entries – come in.

2. Rules are not made to be broken.

Each social media site has specific rules relating to running competitions on their platform – so to avoid Facebook jail or Pinterest purgatory, double check each platform’s rules before using it to promote your competition.

The big one to be aware of is Facebook’s rule of not asking people to “share this post” or “tag a friend” to enter or get extra entries.

If you’re lost in legals or need help navigating the rules, book in a free 15 minute strategy session with our giveaway gurus.

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3. More prizes = more entrants.

Multiple prizes means entrants perceive their chance of winning as higher, especially if you’re offering ‘runner-up’ prizes or weekly prizes alongside a larger, major prize. From our experience designing competitions for major brands, one major prize and up to three smaller prizes is a winning combination, so consider splitting your budget accordingly.

But more expensive prizes ≠ more entries

Remember that ‘valuable’ prizes don’t just mean high dollar value. More expensive prizes don’t necessarily get more entries – prizes that are relevant, attractive and compelling to your specific target audience are the ones that get more entries.

4. Don’t underestimate the power of Pinterest.

Via Unsplash.

You may think Pinterest is mostly used for planning weddings and drooling over cakes you know would be more #failedit than #nailed it if you attempted them… but if you’re looking to drive sales, it’s worth considering Pinterest.

According to Shopify, Pinterest drives a massive 13% of traffic to online stores, second only to Facebook’s mammoth 63%. That said, Pinterest visitors have a higher average order value than Facebook visitors, so if you have a Pinterest account for your business, be sure to promote your competition there!

5. Don’t be stingy with the marketing bucks.

Competitions with an advertising budget saw a whopping 10x more entrants than those without, according to Kontestapp!

Just make sure your advertising is targeted to  your ideal audience to ensure those entering your competition are relevant to your business so you maximise your ROI spending those bucks on potential leads and customers.

And if you need a hand with the promotion side of things, check out our Competition Launch and Promote Package.

6. Choose your words carefully.

It would appear that softer words work best when promoting your competition – great examples according to research by buddymedia include ‘win’ and ‘winning’ rather than ‘contest’ or ‘promotion’. Who knew?

TIP: When emailing your entrants or winners, you might want to skip the words ‘competition’, ‘giveaway’, ‘win’ and ‘winner’ altogether as they’re surefire ways to trigger the spam filter!

Fail to plan, plan to fail. If you take these six pearls of wisdom on board in the planning phase of your promotion, you’re one step ahead of the competition already… no pun intended, honestly. OK, maybe a little.

Want to know what other pearls of wisdom we can share? Why not book in a BS-free, sales-free, totally-free 15 minute competition strategy session with us?