4 Ideas for Traffic-Boosting Contests and Promotions

May 23 / Andrew Kopp / filed under Social Media

Everybody loves free stuff. Even A-list actors who command eight-figure movie salaries squeal at the sight of a swag bag backstage at the Oscars. Having to compete to snag a trip or a free year’s supply of oil changes only feeds the emotional frenzy.

Incorporating fun promotional ideas and interactive contests into your digital marketing strategy is a great way to boost engagement, drive traffic, and gather the data you need to both strengthen your buyer persona and build more tangible resources, such as your email list. The success of a contest-based promotion tells you three things:

  • Whether your campaigns are connecting
  • What motivates your target demographic
  • What kind of perceived value your product or service has

Of course, it’s not as simple as saying “like this post and win a free iPad.” In fact, Facebook has once again changed its algorithm to downrank posts that shamelessly beg for likes or shares. That kind of activity, often called “engagement baiting,” used to help your brand gain visibility. Now it can actually cost you your place in the newsfeed.

How can you get around the new rules and still hold an effective contest? It’s all about delivering value, and you might want to use a third-party contest plug-in app, too. Both considerations are something that an experienced digital marketing team can help you with, but in the meantime, here are some contest and promotional ideas to help jumpstart your brainstorming.

1. The Instagram Selfiepalooza

The idea of your product being the co-star of thousands of selfies is enough to make you giddy, right? Well, what if you could somehow encourage hundreds (or hey, shoot big—thousands or millions!) of consumers to take a snapshot with your fancy pillow or face cream and share it on social media? Instagram contests that require the use of a specific hashtag attached to a photo of the user and your product are a fantastic way to build buzz without costing you any more than whatever it is you’ve decided to give away.

2. The Exclusive Promo Code

Sometimes you don’t have to give away anything specific but rather an overall discount. Offer a flat amount off your inventory, say 10%, and post the promo code in a pinned Facebook post or Tweet or as part of your Instagram bio. Share the details frequently and watch how many of your followers start tagging their friends. People want to clue their buddies into smart ways to save money. Make the deal strong enough and consumers will do the promotional work for you.

3. The Charitable Tie-In

Two-thirds of millennials say they’re more likely to want to work for a company that gives back to the community versus one that doesn’t. That same value-based decision making is likely to bleed over into millennial shopping habits, too. Tie your promotion into a charitable cause by offering a contest entry for every story of #goodwillgiveback posted on Instagram in a certain period of time or do a cross-promotional contest that shines a light on a local non-profit organization.

4. The Influencer Factor

Influencer-driven campaigns are HUGE. Social media celebs with big followings need giveaways to up their sphere of importance and savvy brands are only too happy to help out. Partner with industry leaders to offer a branded discount advertised only on their account to their followers. It’ll be easy to track efficacy (you’ll know the promo is working if the codes are being used) and, in a manner of speaking, everybody wins.

Reach out to the digital marketing experts at Chair 10 Marketing for help in promoting your business or brand online.