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How to Run an instagram giveaway step-by-step

How to Do a Giveaway on Instagram in 10 Easy Steps

Written By: author image Stacey Corrin
author image Stacey Corrin
Stacey has been writing about WordPress and digital marketing for over 10 years and on other topics for much longer. Alongside this, she's fascinated with web design, user experience, and SEO.
     Reviewed By: John Turner
reviewer image John Turner
John Turner is the co-founder of RafflePress. He has over 20+ years of business and development experience and his plugins have been downloaded over 25 million times.

Do you want to learn how to do a giveaway on Instagram?

Hosting an Instagram giveaway is a powerful way to boost brand awareness, increase customer engagement, and get more followers. Plus, with the right hashtags, you can reach more of your target audience to generate leads for your small business.

In this post, we’ll show you how to run a giveaway or contest on Instagram in 10 easy steps, ensuring you’re complying with Instagram contest rules and maximizing participation. We’ll also share our favorite way to pick Instagram contest or giveaway winners randomly.

Table of Contents

How Do Instagram Giveaways Work?

Successful Instagram giveaways are limited-time promotions. They promise to give away a product or service in exchange for users taking specific actions. Those actions can include following your brand’s Instagram profile and leaving a comment, and you can even ask users to tag friends.

Most high-quality giveaways also ask contestants to perform actions on other social media platforms. This helps spread awareness and drive traffic to the initial post.

Why Should You Host an Instagram Giveaway?

According to Sprout Social, Instagram has an average engagement rate of 1.22%, but a successful contest can push that number much higher.

Many brand use giveaways as part of their larger digital marketing campaigns for the following reasons:

  • Grow their Instagram followers
  • Raise brand awareness with new audiences
  • Promote new products
  • More engagement in their comments section
  • Increase website traffic
  • Boost sales and conversions

Giveaways and contests are engaging marketing strategies, and they’re the best way to build relationships with your target audience.

By offering something for free, users will find your campaign exciting and feel more valued. That value encourages them to become potential customers and improves your Instagram marketing efforts.

A recent study found that when you host giveaways, you can help grow your followers 70% faster in 3 months than not running one at all.

hosting an instagram giveaway can grow your followers 70% faster

Moreover, giveaways are super engaging. Businesses have seen up to a 60% increase in engagement and a 20% increase in the follower count during contests.

The engagement your brand gets can help the Instagram algorithm learn that your post is valuable. As a result, it may display your post in more people’s Instagram feeds.

How to Do A Giveaway on Instagram Step-by-Step

Now that you know what an Instagram giveaway is, let’s look at the steps for running a successful Instagram giveaway in WordPress.

Step 1. Decide The Goal of Your Instagram Giveaway

To run an Instagram giveaway, you should start by confirming your goals.

The goal of your giveaway helps tailor your strategy during the planning stages. It also helps you measure your results when the contest is over. That way, you can see if the outcome aligns with your main aims.

Think about what you want to achieve from your giveaway. You might have one or multiple goals.

Here are some examples of what those goals might look like:

  • Run an Instagram competition to increase your follower count.
  • Get more newsletter subscribers.
  • Increase traffic to a particular webpage to grow your audience.
  • Raise awareness about new products or services.
  • Collect user-generated content (UGC) from fans to use in your promotion.
  • Promote a specific product.
  • Get more likes on Instagram to boost engagement.

The critical thing to remember is you should be able to measure the results quickly.

Don’t worry if you can’t think of how to measure your results right now. The entry criteria you set will play a big part in this, and we’ll cover that next.

Step 2. Set Your Giveaway Entry Criteria

A giveaway’s entry criteria are the actions you want people to take in return for entries. Entry methods can vary and depend on your overall marketing goals.

Here are some popular criteria for entering a giveaway with examples of the goals you might want to achieve:

Increase brand awarenessShare the contest post
Build your email listSign up for your newsletter
Grow your followersFollow social media profiles
More blog engagementLeave a comment
Get user-generated content (UGC)Submit a photo

This Instagram giveaway example from Carmex is an excellent example of clearly stating how people can enter. Their criteria are in caps to help it stand out from the rest of the content.

Carmex how to do a giveaway on instagram

When thinking about your goals, also consider the type of giveaway you’ll run. Instead of a simple ‘tag a friend’ contest, you can make things more exciting with a theme.

Here are some different types of Instagram giveaways to consider:

  • Caption contest: Ask users to caption a photo and let the best caption win
  • Trivia contest: Give users questions to answer and draw winners from the pool of correct answers
  • Challenge giveaway: Get users to submit their best attempt at a specific task
  • Live giveaway: Run your giveaway live in real-time.
  • Collaboration giveaway: Partner with complementary brands to enhance your giveaway’s reach
  • Hashtag contest: Organize your giveaway around a specific hashtag users should share
  • Follow to win: Ge users to follow you for a chance to win.

Step 3. Choose a Prize to Give Away on Instagram

Choosing what to give away on Instagram is an essential step in setting up your promotion. What you choose largely depends on your goal.

Do you want to raise awareness about your product? In that case, giving away a copy of it to a lucky winner would be a good prize.

Is it to celebrate the season? Then, a seasonally-themed prize or a gift card is a good choice.

Bomb Cosmetics did a great job with this seasonally festive giveaway post. Even the clever use of emojis helps to convey the time of year.

Bomb Cosmetics Instagram giveaway

Alternatively, you could offer the chance to win an experience or meet a leader in your industry to win your prize draw.

Whatever it is, make sure your prize aligns with what you want to achieve for your business. People love free stuff, but if your prize isn’t relevant, you’ll end up with leads that don’t engage with your brand.

Check out these proven prize ideas we’ve curated to learn what else you can give away on Instagram.

Step 4. Pick a Good Instagram Hashtag

Hashtags are an effective way to find things on your Instagram feed. Using a popular hashtag might result in your giveaway showing up in the Explore channel. This can further increase your contest’s visibility, making it easier for more Instagram users to find it.

Consider using some of these widely used hashtags yourself:

  • #giveaway
  • #giveawaycontest
  • #giveawaytime
  • #giveawayalert
  • #win
  • #winitwednesday

You could also consider creating your own branded hashtag to associate the contest with your business.

Coca Cola share a coke hashtag campaign

Coca-Cola’s #shareacoke branded hashtag campaign proved to be wildly popular. They even ran it as a Facebook Ad with fantastic results.

With your hashtags in place, it’s worth setting up some contest rules. Let’s look at that next.

Step 5. Set Your Contest Rules

Before you host Instagram contests, you must have clear rules. Without any rules or terms, your contest can get messy, with users unclear about what you expect of them and their eligibility.

More importantly, Instagram has its own set of rules for promotional activity.

Instagram’s promotion guidelines say that you should include a disclaimer releasing Instagram from any responsibility.

Do you have to put a disclaimer on Instagram giveaways?

You should include a disclaimer on your giveaway saying something like this:

“As per Instagram’s rules, this promotion is not sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram in any way. By entering, you confirm that you are at least 13+ years of age, agree to Instagram’s terms of use, and release Instagram of any responsibility”.

As you can see from this perfect Instagram giveaway post, they’ve followed Instagram’s promotional guidelines by clearly marking their rules and stating they have no affiliation with Instagram.

Instagram giveaway rules

You should also avoid asking entrants to tag themselves in your content or something that isn’t in the photo. If you do, Instagram might penalize you for it.

For a complete list of Instagram’s rules and regulations, take a look at their promotional guidelines here.

Step 6. Put a Time Limit on Your Giveaway

Telling people how long they’ve got to enter your giveaway can avoid unnecessary confusion. You can do this by stating your time limit in your rules.

Alternatively, you can use RafflePress to cross-promote the giveaway on your website.

RafflePress is one of the best giveaway tools for making a giveaway because it has a wealth of features. They help you create viral giveaways and supercharge your growth at the same time.

The easy-to-use giveaway widget in RafflePress lets you set your contest duration. Simply set a start date and end date within the widget. This lets your audience know when your contest ends and what’s happening at all times.

Set the start and end time of your giveaway in RafflePress

Another good thing about creating a clear giveaway timeline is it creates a sense of urgency. If users know they only have a certain amount of time to enter, they’re likelier to participate for fear of missing out on a grand prize.

Step 7. Choose the Best Giveaway Tool

There are several ways to set up your giveaway. You could run it right directly on Instagram, use a web-based giveaway tool, or host the giveaway on your website.

The first two options have a few drawbacks.

Running your giveaway directly on Instagram can make it harder to monitor and manage. It also can’t protect you from fraudulent entries and spam.

Web-based giveaway tools can help with spam protection and entry management. However, it relies on using their platform, which can have limitations. For example, you’ll have less control over your giveaway domain name, design, and content.

With this in mind, we suggest hosting your giveaway on your business website. That way, you’ll have complete control and ownership of your content. It also helps drive valuable traffic to your site.

If your website is on WordPress, we recommend using RafflePress to set up and manage your giveaway.

how to run an instagram giveaway with rafflepress

RafflePress makes it easy to create any giveaway type on your WordPress website. Plus, it comes with various giveaway templates to make the setup process a breeze.

It has everything you need to accomplish your giveaway goals, whether to grow your Instagram followers, your email list, or even your audience.

If you’re wondering how to set up an Instagram giveaway with RafflePress, here’s a step-by-step guide.

Create a New Giveaway

Click here to get started with RafflePress and download the WordPress plugin to your computer. If you need help doing this, here’s a step-by-step guide for installing a WordPress plugin.

Once you’ve installed the RafflePress plugin, navigate to your WordPress dashboard, click the RafflePress icon, and select Add New.

click Add New to create an online contest

Choose the Instagram Giveaway Template

On the next screen, you can give your giveaway a name and choose a giveaway template. RafflePress offers a range of templates designed to meet specific business goals, such as Growing Your Facebook Page or Email List.

Choose a template to create an online contest based on your goal

For this tutorial, let’s choose the Grow Your Instagram Following template. So hover your mouse over the giveaway template and click Use This Template.

Click the Instagram giveaway template

Enter Your Giveaway Prize Details

After choosing a template, you’ll go to the RafflePress contest builder, where you can set up your giveaway. The first thing you should do here is to enter your prize details.

So go ahead and click on the pencil icon under the Giveaway Prize Details section.

Click the pencil to enter the contest prize details

In this area, you can enter your prize name and add a description so that participants can learn about the prize.

You can also include an image of your prize by clicking the Select Image button under the description box.

When you’re happy with the prize details, click Done Editing.

Enter the name of your contest prize and details

It’s also possible to set the giveaway duration under the Start and End Time heading on the left.

Click the Save button now and then to store your settings.

Choose Your Giveaway Entry Methods

As mentioned earlier, RafflePress makes it easy to add ways for users to enter your Instagram contest. Plus, by using the Instagram template, you already have several entry actions added automatically, such as:

  • Visit us on Instagram
  • View Instagram Post/Video

These actions are fully compliant with Instagram rules for giveaways, as they don’t require anyone to like or share. It’s completely optional.

That said, the chances are anyone using those actions will like your profile out of instinct, making it a win-win situation.

Instagram entry actions

Moreover, the View Instagram Post/Video action lets you embed your post right inside the giveaway widget. That means users won’t need to leave your website to claim their entry, but will still count as Instagram engagement.

Here’s an example I put together of how this looks to end users:

embedded instagram video post inside RafflePress giveaway widget

Depending on your contest goals, you might want to add bonus entries to your contest, such as visiting your Facebook page, referring a friend, etc.

Click the Actions tab and click any action to add it to the giveaway builder.

Click Actions to choose your raffle entry methods

You can then click each action in the widget to access the entry options. These include changing the action label, choosing a value (how many entries the action is worth), making the action mandatory, etc.

Select your giveaway entry options

Repeat this process for each entry action and click Save to store your settings.

Design Your Giveaway

Next, click the Design tab to customize the look of your giveaway. You can choose from 2 different layouts and several font and button colors.

Customize the Design of your online contest

If you’re creating a standalone giveaway landing page, you can select a page background color or upload your background photo.

When your contest looks how you want, click the Save button.

Choose Your Instagram Contest Settings

Upon clicking the Settings tab, you’ll see several options you can configure. It includes your giveaways’ general settings, rules, success tracking, social logins, and more.

One of the most important settings you’ll need is the Giveaway Rules.

RafflePress makes creating rules for your giveaway easy. While it doesn’t offer a specific Instagram giveaway rules template, it does have a rules generator to get a head start on creating your rules quickly.

Clicking this button will allow you to type in the sponsor name, email, address, eligible locations, the minimum age to enter, and more.

See how quickly we generated rules on our test website:

Easily generate contest rules in seconds

Once you’ve finished editing your settings, click the Save button.

Publish Your Giveaway in WordPress

Now it’s time to make your giveaway live. RafflePress offers 3 easy ways to publish your contest in WordPress, including:

  • RafflePress WordPress Block – Embed the giveaway widget in your WordPress post or page (new WordPress block editor).
  • WordPress Shortcode – Embed the giveaway in the classic WordPress editor, sidebar widgets, or inside your WordPress theme.
  • Giveaway Landing Page – Create a distraction-free landing page on your website for your giveaway.

Publishing your contest on a dedicated Giveaway Landing Page is the easiest option. Since it has nothing to distract page visitors from entering, you’ll generate many entries and leads.

Creating a landing page for your giveaway is also an excellent way to help your website rank on Google.

Rafflepress lets you publish your contest on a distraction free giveaway landing page

Go ahead and choose the Giveaway Landing Page option. Then click the View button to see how your giveaway looks.

Here’s an example of a giveaway we created on our website for Instagram:

Step 8. Promote Your Instagram Contest

You can’t just sit around and wait for people to enter your giveaway. It would help if you began promoting it immediately to generate excitement and get tons of entries.

The easiest way to promote your Instagram giveaway is to add your giveaway page link to your Instagram bio and share an announcement post on Instagram, asking people to check the link in your bio to enter the contest.

You can also promote your giveaway by:

  • Sharing the giveaway page on your other social media channels (Tailwind or Buffer are good to schedule Instagram posts)
  • Post Instagram stories about your giveaway to generate excitement directly on the platform
  • Creating a popup with OptinMonster
  • Sending an email newsletter
  • Adding your giveaway to sweepstakes and contest directory websites
  • Reaching out to bloggers and influencers to repost your Instagram giveaway post
  • Writing a blog post giveaway announcement

Start promoting your giveaway weeks before it goes live to generate tons of interest and entries from day 1.

Step 9. Announce the Winner of Your Giveaway

With your giveaway over, you may be wondering, “How do you pick a winner on an Instagram giveaway?”.

A popular way to choose a winner is to use a random number generator. However, this is often time-consuming for busy website owners.

An easier alternative is to use RafflePress to draw a winner for you and display it live on the widget. Simply use the built-in random winner picker, then email the winner right from your WordPress website.

RafflePress choose and email the winner

You can also announce the winner of your giveaway in a new Instagram post.

Most businesses ask winners to contact them via Direct Message to arrange for the delivery of their prize. But if one of the requirements for entering included having participants provide their email addresses, you can contact the winner via that method.

When you announce your winner, don’t forget to thank everyone else for entering. A good way to reward the contestants who didn’t win is to give them a coupon or discount. That way, you’ll benefit from new sales.

Now, remember those goals I asked you to set earlier? How are you going to know if you met them? We’ll learn that in our final step.

Step 10. Track Your Giveaway Results

Finding the results of your Instagram giveaway isn’t too tricky.

If the goal for your Instagram campaign is to drive more traffic to a product or web page via Instagram, MonsterInsights is the solution. It’s the best analytics tracking plugin for WordPress websites.

See actionable analytics with MonsterInsights and how to track instagram contest entries

It gives you the ability to track traffic to your giveaway landing page, referral traffic from your Instagram account and other social platforms, product sales, and more.

You can easily compare how many new followers you gained over the competition’s duration. The same goes for growing your email list, too. Just measure the difference in email subscribers when you began and ended your giveaway, and you’ll get your results.

You can learn more details in my MonsterInsights review.

With RafflePress’s Entries Report, you can also see which giveaway actions drove the most entries. Just click the Users link under any contest that has ended in RafflePress. Then, at the top of the screen, click the Entries Report link.

RafflePress giveaway entries report

It will show you a pie chart that breaks down which actions resulted in the most giveaway entries. As a result, you’ll know which actions drove the most Instagram contest results and use them in your next contest.

Congratulations! You’ve now learned how to run a successful Instagram contest.

Doing so provides an excellent way to understand the likes and dislikes of your followers. It also helps you increase brand awareness and send more traffic to your business.

Instagram Giveaway FAQ

How to do a giveaway on Instagram stories?

To do a giveaway on Instagram Stories, create a post detailing the rules and prizes, use engaging visuals, and encourage followers to participate by following, liking, and sharing.

What are good Instagram giveaway ideas?

Some of the best giveaway ideas for Instagram include:

  • Photo contests
  • Like and share contests
  • Leave a comment giveaways

For more, check out these social media giveaway ideas.

How long should an Instagram giveaway run?

You should typically run your Instagram giveaway for 1 to 2 weeks to allow ample time for participation while maintaining momentum and excitement. Plus, the best day to do a giveaway on Instagram is typically on a Wednesday or Thursday, as engagement rates are often higher midweek.

How to keep track of Instagram giveaway entries?

The easiest way to keep track of entries is to use a giveaway tool like RafflePress with entry-tracking features. You get an overview of who entered, which actions they took, and more inside your WordPress dashboard.

Next More Instagram Growth Tips

We hope this guide helped you learn how to create an effective giveaway for Instagram. If you’re interested in running a contest using RafflePress, take a look at this step-by-step guide.

You might also find the following Instagram tips helpful:

If you liked this article, please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for RafflePress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

author avatar
Stacey Corrin Writer
Stacey has been writing about WordPress and digital marketing for over 10 years and on other topics for much longer. Alongside this, she's fascinated with web design, user experience, and SEO.

Disclosure: Our content is reader-supported. This means if you click on some of our links, then we may earn a commission. We only recommend products that we believe will add value to our readers.

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