Everyone loves contests. It’s fun, competitive and there are prizes involved too. It’s a perfect way to have a fun interaction with your followers. We love running contests and you’ll realize that we’ve run a ton of them in the near past. We were asked a couple of times on how we run our twitter contests, so we’re going to share the blueprint with you.
Conceptualize: This is the numero uno stage of the entire contest process. Here’s where all the questions need to be answered. What’s the contest going to be? What prizes are we going to offer? Why are we running the contest? The key is to understand what you need out of the contest. It could be anything – followers, interaction or even a product promotion. Once the main objective is identified then you can build a contest around it. Also keep the contest as simple as possible so that everyone can participate (we’ve learnt this very useful tip the hard way but ever since, we’ve nailed every contest.)
Hashtags: are super important for contests. Remember that if your contest hits a homerun then that hashtag is what is going to show up in the trends list, so make sure you work your brains a little harder to come up with a cool Hashtag.
Build Up: How successful your contest turns out is much dependant on how good the build-up has been. Give enough time to build-up for the contest so that it can get maximum visibility and buzz. Talk about what people can win by the end of the contest or give them hints as to what the contest is going to be. Use the contest Hashtag with every tweet you push out along with #Contest #ContestAlert. Connect with twitter handles that promote contests like @ContestsInIndia, @Contest_in etc and let them know that you’re running a contest.
Contest: All content and tweets for the contest should be prepared during the Build Up phase itself. At the time of the contest your only focus is to push the contest as much as you can. After the contest goes live, we must keep encouraging the people to participate and also share the contest to achieve virality.
For question and answer contest type, create a maximum of 5 questions and also share one question at a time with a time gap of 15 to 30 mins. This will ensure that people don’t lose interest in the contest and keep adding to the buzz. Make sure you ask people to ReTweet all the posts you make so that you can get more visibility for your contest.
Winner: The final and the toughest of the stages, is picking a winner. If it’s a lucky draw, one must ensure that the participant has completed all tasks of the contest. This is time consuming and we recommend that you take your time before announcing the winner. A creative contest also needs time to be judged, so taking time to find the worthy winner is perfectly fine. Once the winners are picked you would then need to announce it via a tweet. Make sure you connect with the winners once the contest ends and make arrangements to send out the prizes.
This is the blueprint that has worked for us. Feel free to use it to successfully run your twitter contests. We hope your contest trends 🙂 We would also appreciate if you could share your learning through the comments section below.