Do you like getting free things and gifts? So do Instagram users. If you wonder how to get followers fast and grow the engagement on your account, hold a giveaway or competition.
Instagram contests that rock in 2020: Top techniques to win followers

You can blow the same budget on Instagram ads, but do ads really bring a genuine interest in your product?

“After the giveaway ends, people will instantly start unfollowing me.”

Do you still think so? Read this article to the end to discover top techniques helping brands and influencers to establish long-term relationships through contests. You will understand the key points you should avoid in 2020 and three bright examples of killer contest strategies you can adapt for your business.

According to these statistics, posts with many comments and likes will appear high in the feed so that contests are a good way to put your brand forward.

3 things you should leave in the past

If the audience wasn’t active with your latest contest, you probably have made one of these mistakes. Before looking at the successful examples, make sure you move past these bad practices:

  • Overcomplicated rules. Millennials and Generation Z won’t be willing to put much effort into an Instagram competition.
  • Asking for people tagging in photos. Don’t include in your rules the condition to tag other people in a photo – this behavior will look spammy.
  • Asking to repost your content in the followers’ feed. In 2020 no one wants to mess up their aesthetics, so reposting content is not popular. Moreover, users do not see all the feed posts due to new algorithms, which makes reposts ineffective.

Many of you may wonder how to find Instagram contests. Well, I’ve done some research for you. Let’s review the win-win giveaways drawn upon real cases.

Trendy giveaway examples in 2020 + takeaways

1. Cash giveaways by @boohoo

Boohoo is an apparel store, which gathered 6.7 million followers in a short time. In their recent giveaway, they offer £500 in cash for the winner. Giveaways ideas from Boohoo:

  • They give cash prizes for users worldwide.
  • They give vouchers to spend on their site.
  • They give boohoo dollars a winner can spend on shopping.

The dedicated posts always contain captions over videos or GIFs, which makes them eye-grabbing. Let’s examine the aesthetics of the posts with giveaways:

The structure of the captions of these posts is similar. Here is an example of a typical giveaway copy by Boohoo:

💞💜 𝐖𝐈𝐍 𝐎𝐍𝐄 𝐌𝐎𝐍𝐓𝐇𝐒 𝐑𝐄𝐍𝐓 💜💞

This week we've got some HUGE competitions with HUGE prizes! 🤩 Today we’re giving one of you lucky babes the chance to let us cover 1 month's rent! 💸

𝑾𝑨𝑵𝑵𝑨 𝑩𝑬 𝑰𝑵 𝑾𝑰𝑻𝑯 𝑻𝑯𝑬 𝑪𝑯𝑨𝑵𝑪𝑬 𝑶𝑭 𝑾𝑰𝑵𝑵𝑰𝑵𝑮? 😍

1️⃣ “Like” this post

2️⃣ Follow @boohoo

3️⃣ Comment the '✨' emoji below (The more comments, the more chance of winning)

Entries must be made between 16:00 (BST) ‪on 03.08.20 and 16:00 (BST) ‪on 04.08.20 ("Prize Draw Period") to be valid. Prize is £500 cash. Giveaway is open Worldwide. Winner will be announced in the caption and contacted directly via DM. (T&Cs apply: http://tiny.cc/3osjnz) GOOD LUCK! 💞

What are the reasons for the crazy giveaway success and steady account growth? Let me teach you several hacks.

Don't have time to read? Listen and watch our You Tube video about how to hold a giveaway on Instagram:

Key takeaways:

  • Easy entry rules. As you see from the caption below, Boohoo uses the pattern LikeFollow Comment.
  • Contests take place 2-3 times a week. If you don’t want your audience to unfollow you right after the winner is announced, make giveaways a regular part of your Instagram marketing strategy.
  • Prize tied to the product. As you see, Boohoo gives money that winners can spend on their products, which makes the audience loyal to the brand. Once they tried and liked clothes, they may be willing to buy matching items next time.
Note: There is no sense to give away a free iPhone when you are selling shoes. In this case, people who are not your target clients will follow you and then unfollow you quickly. Do you need real customers or just fancy follower numbers?
  • Post aesthetics. Boohoo uses animated graphics with captions, which makes giveaway posts more visible in the Explore feed. As you remember, video content occupies 4x more space compared with images in the Explore section.
  • Well-structured copy. Going back to the example, Boohoo uses a clear template for every contest post, which you can try.
Hack: Use the Ingramer Fonts Generator to highlight essential info and headings.
  1. Heading – announce that the contest is taking place in caps.
  2. Quick description – briefly describe the main idea of the giveaway.
  3. Heading + rules – mark the contest rules with caps and use a numbered list to divide steps.
Note: The color of the emojis matches the color of the media. Grab this hack to make your post more attractive and well thought out.

So, if you’ve just started selling apparel, jewelry, or footwear on Instagram, copy Boohoo schemes and ideas. If you don’t want to give away your products, offer the participants cash – this is the real trend for 2020.

2. Giveaway collaborations by @missyempire

Missy Empire is another apparel shop that is getting popular among Instagrammers worldwide. While the followers’ number approaches 1.5 million, Missy Empire is holding a contest or giveaway every week.

Giveaway ideas from Missy Empire:

  1. Collaborate with other companies to give away complimentary goods.
  2. Give away vouchers for your products.
  3. Encourage people to tag as many people as they can.

Let’s take a look at the captions that Missy Empire uses to announce contests.

⚡ 𝐖𝐈𝐍 ⚡ To celebrate #InternationalFriendshipDay 👯 we've teamed up with the dolls over at @thefoxtan to give one lucky gal AND her BFF the chance to WIN the ultimate vacay bundle PLUS £150 to spend with Missy Empire - perfect for those last-minute vacay plans 💘☀️

For your chance to win👇✨

✖️ 𝙇𝙞𝙠𝙚 this post

✖️ Make sure you're 𝙛𝙤𝙡𝙡𝙤𝙬𝙞𝙣𝙜 @missyempire & @thefoxtan (we check!! 💕💕)

✖️ Show your BFF some love and 𝙏𝙖𝙜 them below 👯 (𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙚 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙢𝙚𝙣𝙩 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙚 𝙘𝙝𝙖𝙣𝙘𝙚 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙤𝙛 𝙬𝙞𝙣𝙣𝙞𝙣𝙜)

✖️ For an extra entry, 𝙎𝙝𝙖𝙧𝙚 this post to your story... we see 👀

Competition ends 03/08/20 ⏰ and the winner will be contacted via DM 🏆 Good luck babes! 💕

Key takeaways:

  • Collaborate for more reach. When you need swimwear, aren’t you likely to need tanning essentials too? Missy Empire gives the target audience the chance to get the whole vacation bundle.
Hack: Promote your giveaway through influencers in your niche. Use the Ingramer Search to discover influencers in any category by demos and audience count.
  • Connect giveaways with special dates. Contests tied to occasions that are meaningful for your audience will result in more activity.
  • Use tag-a-friend in comments mechanics. In 2020 many emerging brands use the more complicated patterns for contests: LikeFollowTagShare in Stories. These rules will help you to get maximum exposure for a giveaway thanks to the comments boom.
  • Use collage images. If making an animation or GIF for a giveaway post seems complicated, think about a collage with a bright caption. They look so stylish in the feed, right?
  • Use fonts and emojis. Let your caption breathe with eye-popping fonts (you can generate them via the Ingramer Fonts Generator).
  • Mention all the details. Point out the duration of the contest and the way you will reach out to the winner(s).

3. Giveaway examples for influencers

Contests and giveaways are amazing ways to boost engagement among the online community. Moreover, they open new possibilities for partnering with brands in your niche. For example, Lauren Stallwood is a fitness coach who gives away earbuds for fitness training.

Another good example of a giveaway from an influencer is by Aston, the owner of the Insta pet. She always gives away a T-shirt from a brand donating 20% to an animal charity, which perfectly correlates with her content.

Note: When holding a giveaway as an influencer, partner with brands within your niche. Sure, the prize could be an iPhone, but will that bring you an audience truly interested in your content?

Giveaway ideas for influencers:

  • Give away products of brands associated with your niche.
  • Hold giveaways and contests to celebrate when you reach a certain amount of followers.
  • Support giveaways for charity initiatives. For example, you can partner up with brands that donate money for charity so that your followers know you are not doing contests just for advertising.

𝗚𝗜𝗩𝗘𝗔𝗪𝗔𝗬 - what a way to start your weekend 🎉⁣

Fancy 𝘸𝘪𝘯𝘯𝘪𝘯𝘨 a brand NEW pair of @esc_sounds ... they are sweet for blasting the tunes whatever you’re doing; chilling, training... 🎶 💗⁣

To be in for a chance to win: ♥️⁣

1. Follow both MYSELF (Loz) & @esc_sounds ⁣

2. Like this post & tag a friend ⁣

The more tags the more likely you are to win 😝⁣ ⁣

Winner to be announced on the 12th of August (next Wednesday) 🎉 ⁣

#GIVEAWAY #escsounds #headphones #howgoodisliving

Key takeaways:

  • Showcase the prize in the photo. When posting about the contest, make sure the prize is depicted in the image. Otherwise, you can post it in the carousel. When the audience sees the gift, they will be more willing to participate.
  • Record videos to become more visible in Explore. Following the example of a pet owner, you can record a video instead of a common giveaway post. Videos grab more attention and result in more interactions.
  • Use the “Follow-Like-Tag” scheme. If your aim is growing reach and attracting new mindful followers, ask people to tag friends in comments. The more comments you get, the higher your post appears in the feed.
  • Add hashtags in the caption. Use dedicated hashtags when posting giveaways. They will help to improve discoverability and gain new followers. You can explore best location-tied hashtags and hashtags suggested by Instagram using the Ingramer Hashtag Generator. Many people follow hashtags like #giveaway or #contest.

Let’s sum up what is new in 2020 for Instagram contests:

  • Money giveaways are getting more popular.
  • Giveaway posts stand out in the feed with copy over photos/videos.
  • Simple entry is more popular than contests encouraging content generation.
  • Highlight the text with fonts and capitalization.
  • Provide the link right in the caption if you have a website with more details.

General steps of running a contest

After studying trends and examples it’s time to clearly understand the steps of an Instagram contest. I’ll be brief and precise.

#1 Decide on the relevant prize

As I mentioned before, there are two main aspects concerning the gift you offer:

  • It should be commensurate with the difficulty of the entry.
  • It should relate to your target audience.

A brilliant idea for 2020 is giving away money people can spend for on-site purchases or coupons. If you’re mixing this type of prize with actual money giveaways, the audience will be looking forward to hopping into your next competition.

#2 State the rules

As can be inferred from the examples above, the easier the rules are, the more engagement the contest achieves. Nevertheless, you can try more complicated rules providing a greater prize instead.

Keep in mind that more intricate contests are more time-consuming for your audience as well as for you. Managing such a contest involves monitoring each post and reaching out to participants.

#3 Create a hashtag

Think over a hashtag that will help you to monitor the dialogue around your contest. Moreover, people can start following this hashtag to stay in the loop of the latest news.

#4 Keep in touch with your audience

It’s crucial to track all the comments and reply to all the DMs people send you concerning a giveaway. Sometimes they may ask you questions that repeat themselves. That’s why I suggest that you set up automated replies by trigger words using the Ingramer DM.

#5 Measure the contest performance

As soon as you have made contests and giveaways a part of your marketing strategy, collect and analyze the data you get. When the competition is over, look back and research the following points:

  • The number of likes, shares, saves, and comments the contest resulted in.
  • Was the prize of value for your audience?
  • What time the audience was the most active. This time period will help you to determine the most effective time and duration for future contests.

All in all

I hope these succesfull examples will help you to hold contests that establish long0lasting relationships with audience. Instagram contests in 2020 are never complicated and time-consuming. So, you contest management will become simpler with the Ingramer Direct Module that allows you reach out to particular audicne groups and leave notes about the participants. Don’t miss a chance and…