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How do Sweepstakes and Contests on Social Media Work?

Running your digital promotion on social media can help both accomplish and boost your goals for marketing to your social followers. Some of these goals may include:

  • Increasing your number of followers
  • Increasing your number of views
  • Tracking number of shares and % share rate of views

These are great engagement measures to track over time, and our clients have certainly seen a lift in these engagement metrics when running a sweepstakes or contest on social media.

You can use promotions to incentivize various action on social media. This really comes down to what we at Realtime Media consider a “qualifying entry”. A qualifying entry can consist of a user’s postal code, age, or even a qualifying purchase. But in this case it is a combination of those plus an action or set of actions taken on social media channels. Here is an example list of a few actions you might look to incentivize on social media:

  • “Tag a friend in a comment on this post to be entered”
  • “Follow our brand page to be entered”
  • “Post a photo or video with #BrandHashtag #ProductSweepstakes for an entry”

💡Compliance Tip: Much like sponsored content posted by Influencers, promotion hashtags that gain users an entry should have “Sweepstakes” or “Contest” in the hashtag. As deemed by the FTC, this lets consumers know they may be consenting to the terms of a promotion’s Official Rules

See Also: Social Media Use Policies: What actions can you incentivize on social media?

So now that you know what some social media promotion entries may look like, here’s how Realtime Media can help you manage your social media promotion and be sure it is fully compliant.

Realtime Media’s Role Your Goal or Need
1. Determine what your goals are. “I want to incentivize users to share their experience with a new product.”
2. Determine what is required to earn an ‘entry’. “Users should upload a picture or video unboxing their product and use hashtags #BrandHashtag #ProductUnboxing”
3. At Realtime Media, we set up our Social Media Admin Tool to listen to your chosen social networks and pull in qualified entries. “I want to be able to browse all the social content that users are submitting to the promotion, in one place”
4. You use our Admin Tool Client Portal to browse through content where you can screen entries to see if they are qualified for the sweepstakes or contest. “I want to make sure my promotion is generating quality content and maybe even reach out to some fans to engage them and even re-share or re-use their posts”
5. We act as your third-party administrator and can randomly select a winner if it is a sweepstakes, otherwise you can use our Admin Tool’s rating system to score entries to find the winner. “I want to be sure I’m compliant if I need a winner selected at random, I also want to be able to judge entries to narrow down the best one from multiple social media channels.”
6. Approved and screened entries can be pushed live to a gallery on your website or microsite to spread the social engagement and display an authentic brand story. “I want to be able to showcase the great social buzz my promotion is getting and also let non-social fans and customers see the great experience other fans and consumers are having with their new product.”
Why Run a Social Media Promotion?