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Contest Preparation Best Practices

Contests are always a great method of getting your community involved and submitting content! When planning to run one, these are 5 things that you should keep in mind: 

  • Define the Goals & KPIs

  • Specify Audience

  • Choose your Channels

  • Prep: Build the Contest, Messaging, & Creative Assets

  • Launch and Promote

Define the Goals & KPIs

Define the end goal in running the social contest. How will you measure the success of your contest? To run a successful campaign and receive the best results, you must define KPIs that can be clearly measured and tracked. Here are some examples of goals & KPIs to consider:

  • Goals:

    • Highlight and celebrate customers

    • Highlight new products/services

    • Generate additional exposure

  • KPIs

    • Traffic to Website - How many new and potential customers are visiting your site? How much time are they spending on it?

    • Purchases - What particular product SKUs generate more revenue? What are your best performing products?

    • Social Impressions - Are customers clicking on your social media pages? Are they clicking through the light boxes?

    • Sign Ups - What are your daily/monthly average users? How can you give more people incentive to sign up?  

Specify Audience

Your contest can differ a great deal depending on its intended participants. What audience are you trying to reach in running this contest? Reactions will be different, and how you market the contest will depend on the messaging.  

Choose your Channels 

Once the contest audience is defined, the next question is how will you reach this audience? Keep in mind that the channels you choose for the contest will likely dictate the contest messaging, as well.

  • How will consumers find the contest site/app?

  • Determine which channels you will drive contest messaging - Facebook, Instagram, X (formerly Twitter), website, blog, etc.

  • Choose one or multiple platforms where the target audience is already present. In addition, ensure that it is easy for participants to submit content, whether it be via @mentions, direct uploads on a microsite/Facebook page, emails, etc.  

Prep: Build the Contest, Messaging, & Creative Assets

Before you can go live with your contest, you must plan and build out the contest.  

  • Determine messaging and hashtags for the contest:

    • In order to gain the most amount of participation, create a simple call to action as an engaging reason for consumers to submit content.

    • Connect your customers with something aside from just your brand – pop culture, sports, seasons, etc. to heighten your relevancy and attract new consumers to your brand, as contests are great ways to improve brand awareness.

    • Have a creative prize – free products, discounts, giveaways 

  • Execute creative assets:

    • Contest Landing Page.

    • Banner Background, CSS.

    • Pre-fill an Emplifi UGC album with relevant images to give users an idea of what type of submissions your brand is looking for.

  • Establish a marketing plan:

    • Determine marketing schedule for campaign

    • Social, email, paid, on-site, etc.

    • Ongoing social blasts, multiple times/week

    • Enable voting. Go to Enable Album Voting to learn more.

Here is a suggested timeline for long-term contests:

Launch and Promote

Once you have launched your contest, it is time to promote by using various channels to attract your target audience and drive participation. Marketing your contest will be very important in driving traffic and fulfilling KPIs. Make sure you keep up with regular posts referring and linking the contest throughout the duration of the campaign to ensure maximum participation.

Launched and ready to maintain your contest? Go to Contest Maintenance Best Practices to learn more.

Do you have feedback or more questions? You can contact us through our Emplifi Customer Center.

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