A strong email marketing list is often the backbone of a digital marketing strategy. Most list-building methods are of the slow and steady variety, but social media gives businesses the opportunity to grow lists quickly through a wider reach and the viral nature of the platform. One method for amassing a lot of subscribers in a short amount of time is to run a social media contest.
Contests and giveaways are popular on social networks, particularly Facebook and Twitter. With a successful social media contest, you can realize results not only for your email lists, but also in the number of fans and followers.
The keys to effective social media contests
If you’re planning a contest to bulk up your subscriber lists and social media followers, it’s essential that you put some effort into making your contest attractive, relevant to your business, and widely publicised. The following tips will help you organise and implement a social media contest that gets results.
- Make it easy. If you require people to jump through hoops to enter your contest, you won’t get many entries. No one wants a lot of hassle in exchange for the possibility of a free prize. Give participants a one-click link to subscribe to your list—preferably as the sole qualification for entry.
- Boost the appeal. Approach the creation of your contest materials the same way you would any marketing campaign. When writing copy for the contest, use attention-grabbing headlines and focus on the benefits. A short video describing the contest can be a great way to engage viewers and encourage participation.
- Offer targeted prizes. Contests that give away big-ticket items with wide appeal, like iPads or $500 Amazon gift certificates, can generate a lot of entries quickly. However, these types of prizes will draw participants who are only interested in the prize, and not your business. Consider offering incentives that will interest your target audience, such as books, software, and high-end gear that relates to your industry.
- Maximise your system. Using a third-party service like Contest Domination or Rafflecopter lets you automate contest coordination, so you can focus on getting the word out. Some of these services can be set up to give people extra entries for taking actions, such as liking your Facebook page or subscribing to your Twitter feed, enhancing the effectiveness of your contest.
- Promote heavily. In order to get a lot of contest entries, you need to make sure a lot of people know about your contest. Promote it on your website and all of your social media networks, and provide incentives for people to spread the word. Social media contests should have longer deadlines as well, to give people time to find out about it and enter.
Running a social media contest can be a lot of fun, both for your business and your subscribers—and it’s a great way to build your email marketing lists and social networks quickly and reliably.