Running a product giveaway with a social media Influencer is a simple and very effective way to increase your social followers, email list, website traffic, establish a relationship with your community, and so much more. 10 years ago, Social Media Influencers weren’t even a thing. The word “Influencer” is still flagged as misspelled by spell check. So let’s start with what an Influencer is.
What is an influencer?
According to Influencer Marketing Hub, an Influencer is an individual who has the power to affect decisions of others because of their authority, knowledge, position, or relationship with their audience. They tend to have a following in a particular niche, with whom they actively engage. Basically, they can be a positive voice for your brand, and a link to potential customers.
There are many ways to utilize a relationship with an influencer. These include, but are not limited to:
As the title of this article alludes, we’re here to talk about running giveaways with influencers!
Tip #1: Identify your brands’ goals for a giveaway
Before you do anything at all, decide what is the purpose for wanting to run a giveaway? Are you looking to expand name recognition? Are you wanting to collect new contacts for an email marketing campaign? Are you looking to increase your social following? How will you measure your results to know if it worked or not?
Starting with the end in mind is always a good idea!
Tip #2: Identify what you need from an influencer
This step is to make sure you understand your needs and expectations. Decide what type of service you would like from the influencer. What kind of budget do you have to pay for an influencer? Does their location matter? What type of content do you want? How do you want to use that content (on your social, website, in ads, etc.)?
Tip #3: Decide how to run the giveaway
There are a few ways to go about running your giveaway. Do you want to use a giveaway program, like Gleam or RaffleCopter, where you can collect emails from the entrants and leverage other entry options? Or would you rather this be a strictly social based giveaway, where entrants have to follow, like, comment, and/or share the post to enter to win?
Depending on your goal you should select the type of giveaway that will directly tie back into that objective. Using a giveaway platform also gives you the added benefit of easier reporting and picking winners.
Tip #4: Find the right influencer(s) for your brand
Each influencer has their own style and type of audience. You want to connect with an influencer who would be sure to help you reach your target customers, and who fits the style and voice of your brand. If you are promoting a vegan product, it wouldn’t make much sense to connect with a “meat-loving grill master” influencer. Their audience is not who you’re trying to reach.
Tip #5: Research your influencer
This is a step that is regularly passed over. It’s very easy to see that someone has 65k followers on Instagram, but the real question needs to be how engaged those 65k followers are. Post engagement is a really big deal. They can have all the followers in the world, but if no one likes or comments on their posts, then no one cares about what they’re posting!
Some other questions to ask:
What other brands have they worked with in the past?
Are they regularly posting on their page?
What social platforms are they on? You might want them to post on all platforms.
What past giveaways have they run? If their past giveaways have had good engagement, odds are your giveaway will do well too!
Tip #6: Communicate, communicate, communicate
And when you think you’ve communicated enough – communicate one more time. It all begins with your initial outreach. Your first contact with the influencer should be clear, friendly, and intimate. No need to be overly formal, but be sure to show them that you’ve looked into who they are, and you think they’d be a great match for your company.
Then, once you’ve established a relationship with them, be ABUNDANTLY clear with what you want. Some things you’ll want to establish are:
Which products you would like them to give away
How many posts you would like from them (before or after the giveaway)
The platforms you would like them to use for the giveaway
How to reference your brand
Hashtags and key speaking points to include in the post
How many images they will provide
What will the images include
Preparation of the product
Product in use
The specific entry requirements (US only, or must be 18 to enter, etc.)
Come to an agreement, and set very clear dates for when you need things to be done. Be sure to give yourself a couple days buffer for edits and unexpected issues.
Tip #7: Stay Flexible
As important as it is to know what you want/need from your influencer, it’s equally important to stay flexible. If you’re paying your influencer for their work, then you can be a bit more rigid in what you want and when you want it. However, if you’re partnering with an influencer and trading product or collected emails (non-monetary goods), you may need to relax a little on the specifics. Things may need to change or be moved last minute, and that’s okay – your influencer is going to know what works best for their audience. And that brings us to tip #8…
Tip #8: Trust your influencer
The influencer is going to know their audience better than anyone else. They’ll know what things work and what doesn’t. And remember that their followers are there because they enjoy this specific style. It is usually a good idea to tell them the message you’d like them to get across, but to let them run with it in their own voice.
Tip #9: Evaluate the results of the giveaway.
This step is crucial to your future success. Did the giveaway go well? Did it have the reach and engagement you were hoping for? Would it be worth it to partner with this influencer again? Once you establish what worked and what didn’t, you will able to further the success of future giveaways.
With a little strategic thinking, these giveaways can have a huge impact. The people who follow influencers trust their thoughts and opinions and are very likely to be interested in a product they have endorsed.
So go out there, find yourself a like-minded influencer, and run a giveaway!