10 min read

Giveaways, a great strategy for your business

August 16, 2021

It is important to have a relevant communication strategy in your social networks, because it will allow you to attract potential customers, but when it is sales season, your strategy must be more attractive because thousands of businesses want to stand out and the competition is stronger during this season.

During the big weekend sale (Buen Fin), Christmas, Hot Sale, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Children's Day and many other seasonal events, the number of publications on social networks grows, and not only that, digital advertising continues to grow, that is why, among this noise, it is vital to have strategies that help you stand out.

One way to stand out from the competition is through digital sweepstakes, also known as giveaways, which will help you boost your social media numbers and most importantly, your sales.

What are giveaways and why use them?

First of all, the word giveaway comes from English and translated into Spanish it means to give as a gift. But in order to have a clearer idea about this concept we can understand it as follows; Strategies where sweepstakes or contests are organized through social networks.

The process is simple, as the brand or business that organizes it establishes some rules for people to participate and the winner receives the prize.

As you can see, the first word of this brief explanation is "strategies", so before implementing a giveaway on Instagram, Facebook or any social network of your business, it is important that you set your goals and avoid imitating other brands.

In order for you to define what you want to achieve with a giveaway strategy, below we share with you different benefits that you can obtain depending on the rules you want to establish:

Grow your followers base

You have surely seen different brands that do something like this:  They post a photo of the prize, for example a kit of their products. They ask participants to follow the account, like the post and also ask them to tag one of their friends in the comments of the post.

This type of dynamics helps to increase the number of followers, because you encourage people to comment and interact with your content. The platform will consequently recognize the publication as relevant content, at the same time that you get more people to see it and get to know your brand and your products.

Growing your follower base helps more people get to know your products or services and later, some of them become customers. That said, if you do not work very well with your followers, having too many will not help at all, so the best thing to do when you want to grow your audience is to establish the following steps so that they won't lose interest quickly.

Increase your brand visibility

A second variation of the giveaway mentioned in the previous paragraphs is to generate alliances with other brands or influencers. This will serve to get the followers of both brands interested in other products and thus your scope will reach an important base of followers.

Let's say, for example, that you sell jewelry and to do a giveaway, you team up with another business that sells other beauty products (such as makeup or skin care products). This goes hand to hand, because both sectors are potential buyers of your product or service.

This is very important, because if you plan to create an alliance, you should think about who you are going to do it with, because if you decide to do it with an influencer who talks about food and you offer beauty products, it will not be the best idea, because their followers are interested in a completely different topic than what you are offering.

Encourage users to create content of your brand

Other types of dynamics exist where the business that organizes the contest asks its followers to share photos of the products they have purchased and the prize is awarded to the person with the most creative publication, with the highest number of likes or by a drawing.

These types of contests are beneficial because they increase mentions and visibility of your brand, as well as help you to come up with new ideas on how to present your products on social networks.

Additionally, content created by other people (other than your business) is often perceived by other users as more trustworthy, i.e. the participants of these types of contests become ambassadors of your brand.

Although many will understand that this is a contest, you could turn it into a trend, like what happens in TikTok, making many people use your products without the need for them to participate in the Giveaway.

To give away my products or not?

As mentioned above, giveaways often become gifts of your product or service so that the people who have them can promote your brand, but if you are just starting out; Is it a good idea to give away your products?

It could be a two-edged sword, as many times gifts of products or services may not be valued as much as we think they are. As human beings, we value things that have a price tag and require a certain level of sacrifice. The more something costs to acquire, the more it is respected and appreciated. But when something has no price and no sacrifice, people don't become so attached to it.

Then; Is it a good idea to implement a giveaway if I'm just starting out? All depends on what you have planned for the contest, because if you have a budget to do it, it won't hurt to do these giveaways. The best thing is that you don't go over that budget or you'll end up with a debt and having followers won't do you much good.

You rarely have the luxury of free time and additional resources as a small business. When you give away your product, you are giving up a chance to take advantage of other strategic opportunities that could take your business to the next level of success.

However, if you define clear and concise objectives about what you want to get, this would not become a loss, instead it would become an exponential growth of your business. Think about it very well and do not try to make a giveaway without thinking about what we will explain below:

Steps to organize giveaways

The first step is to define your objectives and what kind of contest you want to run (as well as the rules you will establish for the participants), but there is still more:

1. Establish your goals

Once you have evaluated what is most relevant for your brand (gaining followers, gaining more visibility or having your followers promoting your producers), it's time to establish your goals.

Remember, goals must be translated into a number in a specific period of time. In this particular case it depends on what kind of dynamics you establish.

If you are looking to increase the number of followers, for example, take into account that this is usually a vanity number, because what matters is that those followers constantly interact with your content, because gradually these interactions can lead to a purchase.  Perhaps in Instagram this goal is important because once you get 10,000 followers you get the "swipe up" function to direct people to a web page or a blog.

This way, once the contest is over, you will have the elements to measure and evaluate if this type of resources is favorable for your brand.

The goals you set must be realistic, because if you have a small business, the idea that the sweepstakes can bring you 50,000 participations and 10,000 "likes" on Facebook is going beyond the limits of realistic expectations. Sure, it can happen if your value proposition and your marketing are right, but it is very unlikely.

Although it never hurts to aim for the stars, always set realistic goals that you know you can achieve. It's far better to set realistic goals and exceed them than to set unrealistic goals and get discouraged when things don't go as planned. You can always build on the experience of your first gift and raise expectations the second and third time around.

2. Evaluate which prizes you will offer

This step is not only about deciding which products will be part of the prize, it is also about considering the finances of your business. In the end, this is a marketing strategy that does have a cost, so it is pertinent that it is reflected in the financial statements of your business.

That said, think about attractive gifts such as a new product, limited edition products, a complete collection, gift cards, a unique opportunity or even a trip. You can think of a budget and stick to it; we mentioned earlier how difficult it might be to give your products or services, but if it's what fits your budget, go for it.

This step is important, because if it is not of interest to your audience, it will be reflected in the performance of the contest. Do you think an athlete will prefer to win new tennis shoes or a free large pizza?

When choosing a prize, ask yourself if it is a strong value proposition. If the prize has an extremely low value, or is not attractive enough for your audience, people will not be interested and will not take the time to participate.

To create a strong value proposition, the prize has to be related to your business and it has to be something that customers are interested in. If it is too specific to your business or not too tailored to the customer's desires, the promotion will not work as well as you expect.

3. Choose in which social network you are going to carry out the contest

To do so, it is important that you review the metrics of your social networks and see on which platform you have more contact with your followers so that the dynamics have better results and therefore more participants.

The use of all the networks you have, to attract people from one social network to another, is the best thing you can do. For example, if one of your goals is to attract more followers on Instagram because it is the network that converts the most followers into customers, you can promote yourself on another one so that they follow your Instagram account.

If you schedule your contest with time, you have the opportunity to promote it in many ways, from a mailing list at least once a week, to using Instagram stories or tweeting about it. By encouraging your followers to share the posts you make on all networks, you can grow your follower base.

Note that the network you choose to do your giveaway comes hand in hand with your objective, for example if you want to get more traffic to your website and increase your email subscribers, then it is not a good idea to host your promotion on a platform like Facebook.

Normally, hosting the promotion on your website is the best option, since you can grow all your social channels from your own website using the right application.

4. Give the right follow-up

Establishing a relationship with the people who signed up or are participating in the contest is necessary. Build a community and get others to participate, if they have already left their comments, photos or videos, you can comment on them, make them see that you take their participation into account and turn this into a kind of community.

The last thing they want during the contest is for you to start selling them your products or services. Take advantage of the fact that you already have people interacting in your publications and start telling them not to miss a surprise or announce when the winner will be chosen.

Eventually, the people who participated in your contest may become potential customers, as they were already willing to have your gift. You could just offer a special discount to those who participated or offer consolation prizes.

One of the main reasons why a Giveaway doesn't work is because of a lousy advertising campaign around it. Many companies fail because they just post about it once on their networks and that's it; but this is not enough, therefore send emails, ask people to participate and send the right message more than once to your potential customers.

Mistakes when making a giveaway

If you are about to launch a giveaway campaign, you should establish the contest rules, these should be simple and clear so that people can participate easily; the simpler you make it, the more people will register.

So please, avoid having them click a button to subscribe to a platform or something similar (unless your intention is to gain email subscribers), make the gift entry process simple and clear, no more making copies, handing out receipts and taking a picture with their grandmother's slippers.

Have in mind that if you ask for videos or photos to participate, the number of competitors will be smaller and you probably won't get the benefits you are looking for. Mentioning people, sharing a story or writing in the comments is the easiest way to get people to participate.

You could end up with a thousand participants who are not interested in your products or services and the only thing they want is to win the gift, if you do not stablish a target audience for your giveaway, so you must establish a clear plan of action, including where you are going to appear and who will be able to register.

Another mistake is that the promotion lasts a short time, because in many cases, due to the "hurry up and run out" strategy, the duration of the promotion is usually very short. The best is that your promotion lasts from 2 to 4 weeks. It is enough time for your plan to work, but not too long for things to start dragging on and people start complaining.

The best thing to do is to experiment with the expected duration; there is nothing written in stone, but if your communication strategy is clear, a couple of weeks is more than enough time.


Regardless of the dynamics you establish, social media contests are a great way to increase the number of people interacting with your business content and therefore this strengthens your digital presence, even in times when other companies increase the volume of publications or digital advertising.

Besides, if you plan your strategy to reach potential customers very well, you can bet that the participants will treat you with respect, even if they don't win, they will value your services and in the future they will become customers because they will see that your business is authentic and unique.

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