Cunningly Good Guide to… Running a Competition

If you keep doing the same thing, you will get the same results. Try something different to see it works. Competitions are so often overlooked and badly run, missing the engagement and selling opportunity they can be.

So how do you run a cunningly good competition?
You see completions online all the time, that’s because they are a real source of contacts to add to your current contact list. You should always look to grow your contact list. A competition gives you insight into your interested audience and also an audience that is engaged. These are both extremely valuable assets to your business.

In a nutshell:
• Use competitions to really focus your marketing efforts on that engaged audience
• Try to gather contact information from the competition
• Always follow up to the winners and share that online. Everyone likes to share happiness
• Follow up those who didn’t win too, they are just as valuable. offer a consolation prize
• Comply with GDPR rules about contact information and marketing tools

How do competitions help?
Your product is out there already, or not as the case may be. You can go out and share your product through a varied marketing plan. You always hope this will increase your sales, however, your audience may not react instantly. They may see your product, they may recognise your product, but they may see your product as something they want but not necessarily need. This is a great way to get that audience actively engaged.

Benefits of Competitions
• Every competition is an opportunity to share your product or service and for others to join in
• It’s a way to recognise your followers and reward them
• You increase your contact list, which can only be good for business
• They can be really engaging posts which is great results for any social marketing plan

Things to consider when you are running a competition:
• You need to gather the people’s contact details
• You need to gain their agreement to send them marketing information – GDPR requirement
• Make the competition easy to enter and fun to win
• Make the prizes something your audience would want
• Always follow up the winners and non winners to offer something as a consolation
• If you find you don’t get enough engagement in the competition, check your digital reports to see if the social posts are reaching your audience? If there is little engagement, you need to perhaps make the prize more exciting or strengthen the competition post call to action
• If you have reasonable success from the post, then think about paying for the post to be boosted. You do not want to pay money to boost a post which has no ‘buzz’ about it.

How to run a competition
• The online forum is in top gear at the moment as the world is more digital than ever before. Social channels offer a great and varied way to engage with your audience, remember to tweak your approach to each audience. For example, a LinkedIn audience would engage very differently to an Instagram audience.
• Use the like and share technique to ensure your competition gets as much engagement as possible. This was previously not allowed by some of the channels but has since been changed.
• Get your entrants to share pictures or videos as part of their entry, this will also get more engagement.
• Make it easy for your audience to take ‘one click’ to share their email address and sign up to the competition.
• Give your competition time to get plenty of applicants. A 24 hour flash competition will barely have enough time to get into people’s timelines, be realistic and make the most of it by pushing it over a week or even a whole month, depending on the value of the prize.
• Try a count down to the close of the competitions, again, it gets engagement,

There are great resources online to help you. They always try to get you to sign up as a part of reading their material, you don’t usually have to. But take a look at some, give it a try yourself. If you are struggling to really get the impact you want, there could be a few reasons, that may not be to do with your actual competition. We welcome you to contact us or check out our portfolio of work should you want to talk about a more impactful all-round marketing approach.

A few that we found very quickly for you are