Last updated on June 9th, 2023 at 09:54 pm
As we step into 2023, it’s clear that social media contests continue to be an effective method of engaging audiences, growing followers, and increasing brand visibility. Regardless of your business type or size, creating a compelling social media contest can drive user interaction and build a strong, interactive online community.
The beauty of social media contests is their versatility. They can be tailored to suit your specific goals, whether it’s boosting engagement, generating user content, or promoting a new product or service. Moreover, they provide an exciting way for your audience to interact with your brand beyond just consuming your content.
Ultimately, the key to a successful social media contest lies in the idea. It needs to be fun, align with your brand, and resonate with your audience. But coming up with unique contest ideas can be challenging.
That’s why we’ve curated a list of 20+ free social media contest ideas for 2023. These ideas are designed to help you ignite your creativity, engage your audience, and transform your social media platforms into vibrant, active spaces. Whether you’re a seasoned pro looking for fresh inspiration or a newbie eager to dive into the world of social media contests, there’s something for everyone in the list that follows.
Table of Contents
- 1. “Tag a Friend” Contest
- 2. Photo Caption Contest
- 3. User-Generated Content Contest
- 4. Trivia or Quiz Contest
- 5. “Like and Share to Win” Contest
- 6. Scavenger Hunt Contest
- 7. Best Selfie Contest
- 8. Recipe or Cooking Contest
- 9. Design Contest
- 10. Voting Poll Contest
- 11. “Predict the Score” Sports Contest
- 12. TikTok Dance Challenge Contest
- 13. Fitness Challenge Contest
- 14. DIY Project Contest
- 15. “Share Your Story” Contest
- 16. Themed Photo Contest
- 17. Pet Photo Contest
- 18. “Fill in the Blank” Contest
- 19. Hashtag Contest
- 20. “Best Review” Contest
Where do I run my contest?
Before we start, running your contest on a trusted 3rd party tool like SweepWidget.com can take a lot of the work out of it for you. You can easily manage several social media profiles in the same giveaway (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Youtube, etc.), automatically select winners, manage user data, and quickly streamline the whole process. But, running a contest natively on each platform can have its benefits too i.e. directly on Instagram, Facebook, etc. If you’re only using one social profile, the second option can also be a good choice for you.
Without further ado, let’s start with the 20+ social media giveaway ideas!
1. “Tag a Friend” Contest
“Tag a Friend” contests are a straightforward yet powerful strategy to boost engagement and extend your reach on social media. These contests work on the simple premise of asking your followers to tag a friend in the comments section of your post. As friends tag each other, the visibility of your post expands organically, thereby introducing your brand to potential new followers. This tactic is not only effective in terms of reaching a broader audience, but it also makes the interaction more personal and engaging, leading to higher participation.
Imagine you run a coffee shop. You might post a picture of a beautifully crafted latte with the caption, “Who needs a coffee break? Tag a friend for a chance to win free lattes for both of you this Friday!” This strategy not only encourages interaction but also brings heightened awareness to your shop.
2. Photo Caption Contest
A Photo Caption Contest is an innovative way to encourage your audience to interact with your content. By posting a photo and asking your followers to provide a caption, you’re inviting them to engage their creative thinking skills. This method not only increases the visibility of your post (thanks to the algorithm favoring high-engagement content), but it also creates a fun, collaborative space for your audience, fostering a stronger sense of community around your brand.
A pet supply store might post a picture of a dog making a funny face and ask followers to caption it. The caption could read: “What do you think Bella is thinking? Best caption wins a free bag of Bella’s favorite treats!”
3. User-Generated Content Contest
User-Generated Content Contests are an excellent way to foster engagement by inviting followers to create content that relates to your brand. It is a two-way engagement strategy that not only makes your followers feel valued and involved, but it also increases your brand’s visibility when they share their content. Moreover, the content generated is authentic and relatable, making it a valuable addition to your own promotional materials.
A fitness brand might ask followers to post pictures of themselves performing their favorite workout in the brand’s gear. The post might include: “Share your workout with us using #BrandNameFitnessChallenge for a chance to win a year’s supply of our best-selling protein powder!”
4. Trivia or Quiz Contest
Trivia or Quiz Contests are an interactive way to test your followers’ knowledge about your brand, industry, or other related topics. These contests are engaging and informative – they can increase interaction rates while educating your audience about your brand or products. Plus, they add an element of fun to your social media page, making your brand more relatable and approachable. A tool like SweepWidget.com makes it extremely easy to build a custom form, ask questions, and pick winners who complete these tasks.
Let’s say you’re a skincare brand. You could create a quiz asking followers to match your products with their benefits, with a caption that reads, “Test your skincare knowledge! Correct answers will enter a draw to win our new skincare range.”
5. “Like and Share to Win” Contest
“Like and Share to Win” Contests are quick ways to increase your social media presence. They require users to like your contest post and share it on their profile or story. This helps to rapidly boost your brand’s visibility, as each share exposes your brand to a new network of potential followers. The success of these contests relies on a visually appealing post that clearly communicates the contest rules and prizes.
If you own a bakery, you could post a photo of a new pastry with the caption, “Like this photo and share it on your story for a chance to win a box of our new pastries! Don’t forget to tag us so we can see your entries.”
6. Scavenger Hunt Contest
A Scavenger Hunt Contest provides an adventurous twist to your social media engagement. By creating a list of items or tasks for your followers to find or complete, you encourage them to interact more extensively with your brand. The beauty of this type of contest lies in its adaptability – it can be conducted online or offline and can be customized to suit your specific brand.
An outdoor equipment brand could create an online scavenger hunt, asking followers to find specific items on their website. The caption could read, “Find the three camping items hidden on our website and comment their names below for a chance to win a camping gear package!”
7. Best Selfie Contest
Best Selfie Contests are an exciting way to get your followers involved with your brand. By asking them to post a selfie with your product or at your location, you foster a sense of brand loyalty, while also gaining valuable user-generated content.
A makeup brand might run a contest with the caption, “Show us your best selfie using our summer palette! Tag us and use #BrandNameSummerGlow for a chance to win our upcoming fall collection.”
8. Recipe or Cooking Contest
A Recipe or Cooking Contest can stir up a lot of excitement, particularly for food and beverage brands. By asking your followers to share their best recipes using your products, you’re encouraging them to engage creatively with what you offer, while also gathering unique content for your platform.
A spice company could create a contest asking followers to share their best recipe using one of their spice blends. The caption could read, “Share your best recipe featuring our Smoky BBQ Blend using #BBQRecipeContest and win a year’s supply of spices!”
9. Design Contest
Design Contests are a brilliant way to encourage your audience’s creativity and engagement. By asking followers to design something for your brand, whether it’s a logo, a t-shirt, or even a product package, you’re involving them directly in your brand’s development.
A clothing brand might run a design contest for their next t-shirt graphic. The post could say, “Show us your artistic talent! Design our next t-shirt graphic for a chance to have your design sold in our stores and online.”
10. Voting Poll Contest
Voting Poll Contests are an excellent method to get your followers involved while simultaneously gathering valuable insights. By asking your followers to vote on an aspect of your brand, like a new product color or a service feature, you’re making them feel valued and a part of your brand’s decisions.
A cosmetic brand might ask followers to vote on their favorite lipstick shade for the upcoming season. The caption could read, “Help us choose our next lipstick shade! Vote your favorite color and enter a chance to win the entire lipstick collection!”
11. “Predict the Score” Sports Contest
“Predict the Score” Sports Contests can be a thrilling way to engage your audience, especially when there’s a big game coming up. By asking your followers to predict the final score of a match, you’re providing an interactive experience that builds anticipation and fosters community.
Imagine you run a sports bar. During the NFL season, you could post a contest with the caption: “Predict the final score of this weekend’s big game and win free wings and beer for the next game!”
12. TikTok Dance Challenge Contest
TikTok Dance Challenge Contests have become a viral sensation in recent years. By creating a unique dance for your brand or using an existing popular dance, you’re opening the door for significant engagement, especially with the younger demographic.
A fashion brand could launch a TikTok dance challenge with the caption: “Show us your best moves using #BrandNameDanceChallenge for a chance to win our new summer collection!”
13. Fitness Challenge Contest
Fitness Challenge Contests can inspire and motivate your audience while promoting your brand. By challenging your followers to achieve a specific fitness goal, you’re creating a supportive and interactive community.
A fitness equipment brand might run a contest with the caption: “Join our 30-day push-up challenge! Post your progress daily with #BrandNamePushUpChallenge to win a full home workout set!”
14. DIY Project Contest
DIY Project Contests are an excellent way to engage followers who enjoy creative pursuits. By challenging your audience to create something using your products, you’re boosting engagement and creating a space for your customers to showcase their talent.
A home improvement store might post a contest with the caption: “Share your best DIY project using our tools with #BrandNameDIYContest and win a $500 gift card!”
15. “Share Your Story” Contest
“Share Your Story” Contests can create deep connections between your brand and its followers. By inviting your audience to share their personal experiences or stories related to your brand, you’re building a sense of community and trust.
A travel agency might ask followers to share a memorable travel story with a caption like, “Share your most unforgettable travel moment using #BrandNameTravelStories and stand a chance to win a fully-paid weekend getaway!”
16. Themed Photo Contest
Themed Photo Contests are a fun and creative way to engage your audience. By setting a specific theme for the photos, such as “summer adventures” or “holiday cooking”, you encourage your followers to showcase their creativity and storytelling skills.
An adventure gear brand might host a themed photo contest with the caption, “Share your best summer adventure photos using #BrandNameSummerAdventure for a chance to win a camping essentials kit!”
17. Pet Photo Contest
Pet Photo Contests are guaranteed to bring a smile to your followers’ faces. Whether you ask for cute, funny, or simply adorable pet photos, you’ll be sure to get a flood of responses from your pet-loving audience.
A pet store might run a contest with the caption, “Share a photo of your furry friend using #BrandNameFurryFriends, and you could win a year’s supply of pet food!”
18. “Fill in the Blank” Contest
“Fill in the Blank” Contests are a great way to spark your audience’s creativity. They allow you to ask open-ended questions, sparking conversations that increase engagement and give you insights into your audience.
A bookstore could post a contest saying, “Fill in the blank: My favorite book is _______ because _______. Share your answer in the comments for a chance to win our top 10 bestsellers!”
19. Hashtag Contest
Hashtag Contests can be an excellent way to increase your brand’s visibility. By creating a unique, catchy hashtag and asking your followers to use it in their posts, you’re able to track participation easily and reach a broader audience.
A coffee shop could run a contest with the caption, “Share a photo of your favorite coffee moment with #BrandNameCoffeeLove and enter to win free coffee for a year!”
20. “Best Review” Contest
“Best Review” Contests can boost your brand reputation by encouraging customers to share their positive experiences. These reviews can also provide valuable feedback on what you’re doing well and where you can improve.
A restaurant might run a contest with the caption, “Share your review using #BrandNameFoodReview and stand a chance to win a dinner for two!”
In conclusion, social media contests are an exceptional tool to increase engagement and expand your brand’s reach. By creating fun, exciting, and interactive challenges, you not only foster a more active community but also build a stronger bond between your brand and its followers.
You have the option of using a tool like SweepWidget.com to manage your contest, or you can run it directly on the social platform of your choice. If your goal is to manage several profiles in the same giveaway (IG, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, etc.), then something like SweepWidget is better option. But, if you simply want to use one platform, then it could be a better idea to run it directly on the platform of your choice.
Remember, the key to a successful contest in 2023 and beyond lies in understanding your audience’s interests, staying abreast of trending topics, and, most importantly, offering contests that are engaging and offer value to your audience. Whether it’s a “Tag a Friend” contest, a “Pet Photo Contest”, or a “Best Review” contest, each of these ideas has the potential to make your social media platforms more vibrant, exciting, and connected. Give them a try, and watch your engagement soar!