Think Creative Collective

How to Host Your Next (or First) Instagram Giveaway

Social Media SimplifiedEmylee Williams4 Comments

Running a giveaway or promotion for your business can bring a whole new audience and traffic to your brand. We know it can be really overwhelming to organize, promote and follow through with a giveaway, but this is your chance to be able to offer up something you know your audience will love. 

There are a few different types of giveaways that we’ve participated in or helped facilitate on Instagram and there are definitely pros and cons to each. Today we’ll break down each type of promo and give you tips on how you can get to hosting your own!

Running a giveaway or promotion for your business can bring a whole new audience and traffic to your brand. We know it can be really overwhelming to organize, promote and follow through with a giveaway, but this is your chance to be able to offer up something you know your audience will love | Think Creative Collective

First let’s break down the three main types of Instagram Giveaways: Loop Promo, Self Promo and Group Promo. Each of these promos requires a lot of pre-planning, attention to detail and organization.  

Self Promo

This type of giveaway works if you either have a product or service to give away from your own business or your are highlighting another business by giving something of theirs away. This type of promo only involves one business (yours or someone else's). If you’re choosing to give away something your business creates it’s usually to bring attention to your shop, that item or as a thank you to your audience. 

Pros:
Easy to organize and set up
Great way to get your feet wet
Helps you highlight other shops
Nice way to bring enthusiasm and attention to your brand 

Cons: 
Hard to reach a ton of new people (unless you make it required to share as a rule to enter)
Might come off as inauthentic if the product you share isn’t in line with your brand

Group Promo

This type of giveaway is usually set up when you gather up items from your own business and/or multiple shops. We’ve hosted group promos when we’re in a launch phase to we can highlight shops we love. You could gather up items from a few shops and style them together as “a week of giveaways” to draw attention to your launch or business. 

Pros:
Let’s you tag and highlight multiple shops or businesses
Brings more attention if you’re in launch mode

Cons:
Have to get items shipped to you from businesses
You’ll have more items to organize and mail out to winners
It kind of overtakes your feed during the giveaway period
Harder to keep track of who sent and won certain items

Loop Promo

Hint: this is the most intricate type of giveaway, but it could lead you the best results. A loop promo involves multiple Instagram accounts all giving away the same item(s), posting the same image and posting at the same time. The key to this is at the same time. When posted all at once you create a “loop” where you instruct your followers to go through and “follow” all the accounts inside the loop. Your image would be tagged with the person your followers are supposed to go follow and once they go there they will see the next person tagged and so on until they get back to you (this closes the loop).

Pros:
Usually leads to a large flux of new followers
You probably get to offer something more expensive since you’re combining multiple people in the giveaway
You get to work closely with the other people in the loop

Cons:
Takes a lot longer to organize (how much to spend, what to buy, who’s involved, etc)
There will always be someone who makes a gap in the loop because of timing
Might come off as spammy if you do these too often or include too many people in the loop

No matter what type of giveaway you end up deciding to try first the foundations of running a successful giveaway are generally the same. If you follow these basic steps you’ll have a clear control over your giveaway and can potentially reach a lot of new people. 

  • Decide what kind of promo
  • Reach out to potential partners (optional)
  • Create a graphic/styled image of items
  • Create a script to be consistent
  • Decide on length of giveaway
  • Agree on posting time (if group or loop)
  • Share, share, share
  • Follow through

It’s important to remember that you’ll learn what works for you and your audience as you experiment. Not all of these types of giveaways will work for every brand. If you feel like what you offer is authentic and can benefit your audience then find a unique way to encourage sharing and growth for your account in exchange for the freebie. We recommend that you start small (with a Self Promo) and test the waters before diving into a Loop Promo. Also use caution when you get into a Loop Promo and be sure that you feel comfortable with the people you’re in it with and with the set budget (we recommend starting with somewhere less than $25 at first). 

We think it’s key to be few and far between with your giveaways so your audience can come to your feed for inspiration or education instead of constant promos. We’d love to hear what’s worked for you in the past for giveaways or ideas you have for future ones!