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How to Run a Successful Instagram Giveaway in 10 Easy Steps

Last Updated on June 16, 2021 by Stacey Corrin

Do you want to learn how to run an Instagram giveaway?

Instagram giveaways are the best social media marketing tactic to gain followers, boost brand awareness, and increase customer engagement. Plus, you can reach more of your target audience to generate leads for your small business with the right hashtags.

In this post, we’ll show you how to do a giveaway on Instagram in 10 easy steps. We’ll also share the best resources to pick Instagram contest winners randomly.

Shall we get started?

How Do Instagram Giveaways Work?

Instagram giveaways are limited-time promotions that promise to give away a product or service in exchange for users taking specific actions.

Those actions can include following a brand’s Instagram profile, leaving a comment, and even tagging a friend.

Why Run an Instagram Giveaway?

You can run an Instagram giveaway for almost any reason; however, most brands create this kind of promotion to:

  • Grow their Instagram followers
  • Raise brand awareness
  • Promote new products
  • Increase website traffic

Since giveaways and contests are super engaging, it’s the best way to build relationships with your target audience. By offering something for free, users will not only find your campaign exciting, but they’ll also feel more valued.

How to Run An Instagram Giveaway

Now that you know what an Instagram giveaway is and the benefits of running one for your brand, let’s explore how to run a successful giveaway on Instagram.

Step 1. Decide The Goal of Your Instagram Giveaway

If you want to learn how to run an Instagram giveaway, you should start by confirming your goals. The goal of your giveaway helps you tailor your strategy during the planning stages. It also helps you measure your results when the contest is over to see if the outcome aligns with your main aims.

Take a moment to 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:

The critical thing to remember about your goals 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

An Instagram giveaways’ entry criteria are what actions you want people to take in return for entries. Entry methods can vary and depend on the goal you’re aiming for.

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

  • Ask people to share your giveaway if you want to increase brand awareness.
  • Build your email list by asking people to sign up for your newsletter.
  • Get people to follow your social profiles to grow your social media following.
  • Ask people to leave a comment to increase blog engagement and traffic.
  • Create a UGC photo contest where users have to upload a photo and tag friends in the comments section for bonus entries

Whether your goal is to drive traffic to your site or to get more Instagram followers, choosing the proper entry criteria can make all the difference to the outcome you get.

Let’s face it; there’s not much point in asking people to sign up for your newsletter if your goal is to get more Instagram followers.

Carmex Instagram competition to gain followers

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.

With your Instagram giveaway goal and criteria set, the fun part is choosing an exciting giveaway prize.

Step 3. Choose a Prize for Your Instagram Giveaway

One of the essential steps for setting up your contest is deciding what to give away on Instagram. 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 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 Instagram giveaway

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.

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

Whatever it is, make sure your prize aligns with what you want to achieve for your business.

For more ideas on what to giveaway on Instagram, check out these proven prize ideas.

Step 4. Pick a Good Instagram Hashtag

You might already know that hashtags are an effective way to find things on your Instagram feed. Using a popular Instagram hashtag might even result in your giveaway showing up in the Explore channel. This would further help increase your contest’s visibility and make it easier for more Instagram users to find.

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 Instagram Giveaway Rules

Before you host a giveaway on Instagram, you must have some clear rules in place. Without any rules or terms, your contest can get messy, with entrants unclear of what you expect of them.

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

You should include a comment similar to the one below in your giveaway so your follower’s know it’s not connected in any way to Instagram:

“This giveaway is in no way sponsored, associated with or administered by Instagram, Inc. By entering the contest; you confirm you are over 13 years of age, agree to Instagram’s terms of use, and release Instagram of responsibility”.

Instagram giveaway rules

As you can see from the example above, they’ve followed Instagram’s promotional guidelines by clearly marking their giveaway rules and stating they’re not affiliated with Instagram.

You should also make sure you don’t ask entrants to tag themselves in your content or something that isn’t in the photo. If you do, Instagram will likely penalize you for it.

Fur 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

With the rules taken care of, 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 giveaway rules. Or, you can use RafflePress to cross-promote the giveaway on your website.

RafflePress is the best tool on the market for making an Instagram giveaway because it has a wealth of options designed to create fantastic viral giveaways and supercharge your growth at the same time.

The easy-to-use giveaway widget in RafflePress lets you set your contest duration. That way, both you and your audience will know 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 with your followers. Knowing they only have a certain amount of time to enter makes them more eager to participate for fear of missing out on a grand prize.

Even better, having people enter your giveaway more quickly will keep your post at the top of your followers’ feeds.

So how about we look at how to launch your Instagram giveaway next?

Step 7. How to Run an Instagram Giveaway with RafflePress

Now it’s time to set up your giveaway on Instagram, and the process is pretty simple when you use RafflePress, the best giveaway plugin for WordPress.

how to run an instagram giveaway with rafflepress

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

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

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

1. 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

2. 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 Grow Your Facebook Page, Grow Your Email List, and so on.

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

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

Click the Instagram giveaway template

3. Enter Your Instagram Giveaway Prize Details

After choosing the Instagram giveaway template, you’ll go to the RafflePress contest builder. 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

You can enter your prize name and add a description for participants to learn what the prize is all about in this area.

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.

4. 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 giveaway template, you already have several entry actions added automatically, such as:

  • Visit us on Instagram
  • View Instagram Post/Video

Both of 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

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

To do this, 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 enter the entry options. This includes changing the action label, choosing a value (how many entries the action is worth), making the action mandatory, and so on.

Select your giveaway entry options

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

5. Design Your Instagram 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 own background photo.

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

6. Choose Your Instagram Contest Settings

Upon clicking the Settings tab, you’ll see several options you can configure. This includes your giveaways’ general settings, giveaway 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 Instagram giveaway easy. While it doesn’t offer a specific Instagram giveaway rules template, it does have a giveaway rules generator to get a head start on creating your rules quickly.

Clicking this button will bring up a window where you can type in the sponsor name, email, address, eligible locations, the minimum age to enter, and more.

Easily generate contest rules in seconds

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

7. Publish Your Instagram Giveaway in WordPress

Now it’s time to make your Instagram 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.

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 what your Instagram giveaway looks like.

Step 8. Promote Your Instagram Giveaway

You can’t just sit around and wait for people to enter your giveaway. It would help if you began promoting it right away 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.

You can also promote your Instagram giveaway by:

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 Instagram Giveaway

With your Instagram giveaway over, it’s now time to choose a winner and announce it to the people who entered.

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

Users of RafflePress can take advantage of having the plugin automatically draw a winner for you and display it live on the widget.

RafflePress choose and email the winner

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

Most businesses ask winners to contact them via Direct Message to arrange to deliver 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.

Related: How to Email Non-Winning Giveaway Contestants (5 Tips)

Now, remember those goals you set? How are you going to find the results? We’ll learn that in our final step.

Step 10. Track Your Giveaway Results

Wondering how to keep track of Instagram giveaways? Finding the results isn’t too tricky.

If your goal was to drive more traffic to a product or web page via Instagram, MonsterInsights is 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 a lot more.

For goals related to growing your followers, 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 this MonsterInsights review.

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

RafflePress giveaway entries report

This will show you a pie chart that breaks down which actions resulted in the most giveaway entries. That way, you know which actions are more successful so that you can use them in your next contest.

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

Not only does this provide an excellent way to get to know the likes and dislikes of your followers, but it also helps you increase brand awareness and more traffic to your business.

Instagram Giveaway FAQ

Are Instagram giveaways legal?

Instagram giveaways are perfectly legal, as long as you abide by Instagram’s promotional guidelines.

How long should you run an Instagram giveaway?

Ideally, your giveaway on Instagram should last from between 1 to 2 weeks.

What are good 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.

If you’re interested in running a contest using RafflePress, take a look at this step-by-step guide.

And don’t forget to check out our YouTube channel. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter for even more great giveaway ideas.

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