Instagram’s got it going on and running a contest is a fun way to get some social media engagement and attention for your business. We found some great tips from Truus Heremens article on called ‘How to Run a Kick Ass Instagram Contest‘.  With these tips, you’ll see that it can be a snap (wink, wink) to run a contest on the visual social platform from beginning to end. Some of the Heremens tips include:

Plan ahead

Take the long view on an Instagram contest. You get better results the more you plan ahead. Heremens explains, “You will need to think about your contest topic, time frame, how and where to promote, your prize, and much more. Your contest planning starts with a thorough brainstorm about the topic.”

Put a hashtag on it

Don’t just have a contest for the sake of having a contest. Make sure that the theme connects to your overall marketing goals, and also tie in a hashtag. Heremens advises, “When deciding on a hashtag for your contest, make sure it is descriptive, that it reflects your contest but also that it is unique enough so that it is easy to trace entries.”

Tie your prize to your audience

The more your audience wants the prize, the harder they’ll fight for it. Pick a prize that has real value to your audience. Heremens says, “if you have a product, or a service, think about giving that away – or maybe offering a discount.”

Announce & promote

If you don’t let your audience know there is a contest, nobody else will. Distribute the information online, in-house, through social media and out to your email marketing list. Participants have no built in incentive to promote your contest, it just increases the competition. You can create an incentive by making a judging criteria the number of likes a picture gets, or by requiring broadcast of the piece on each entrant’s account as an entry requirement. Always check Instagram’s terms before you run any contests.

Celebrate the winner

If you want repeat business, make sure you announce the winner on your website, blog and in your email newsletter and of course, on Instagram. Heremens final piece of advice is, “Follow up by uploading all entries to your Facebook page and Pinterest account – with a link back to your blog post. You will see that participants love to see their work appear. After your contest has ended, keep your new follower base engaged and excited about your brand, products, and services. Post regular news and updates – and remember, keep it personal and be creative!”

Remember, running an Instagram contest isn’t really all that hard, and can be fun and engaging for your audience.

Have you tried an Instagram contest for your biz? How’d it go?

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