Photo sharing has become extremely popular thanks to the different apps and websites that encourage social sharing. Instagram averages 70 million photo shares a day. The increasing popularity has created a surge in companies running photo sharing promotions and contests. These are easy ways for you to create and develop engagement with the consumers in your community and also inspire user generated content for your business.
The start of Spring offers many opportunities for image contests because it can inspire stellar photography. As people begin to wander outside, taking photos to showcase spring, it offers you a chance to invite consumers to connect with your business and share those images with you.
Here are five tips for running a photo sharing contest.
1) Pick a Theme
Your first step is to decide what the contest theme is going to be. Even if it’s to celebrate Spring, what part of the season are you trying to showcase. Think about what type of photos would make the most sense for your customers to take and associate with your business. Is it pictures of the first spring flowers? The first birds at the bird feeder? Sunsets across a thawed out landscape? Create parameters for the photos that connect the contest to your business and consumers you look to attract.
2) What is Your Goal?
Once you’ve picked what type of contest you’re going to host, your next step is to think about how you are going to measure success. What’s your goal? Are you trying to gain followers? Are you trying to make people aware of your business? Do you want people to visit your store? You need to know what your goals are so that you can set realistic expectations for the contest and measure its success.
3) Select a Prize
There may be some photographers who will share photos just for fun, but most will look for the opportunity to win something. Now that prize is up to you, but decide if this is going to be a weekly or monthly contest. If it is a weekly game then a smaller prize would be expected, but if it’s a monthly challenge, have a grand prize that your consumers will really desire and want to win.
4) Make it Social
Make sure the competition has a large social component. No one is going to want to email their entries, they are going to want to share their pictures with you instantly. Create a hashtag for the contest, but make sure it’s specific to you and your campaign. Many people will be using #Spring or #SpringPhotos, just to share images with people who like springtime photos. Think of a way to make the name unique. Incorporate your business name into the name of the contest and make it a stipulation that they need to tag their photo with that hashtag. This way you can use sites like #Tagboard, Keyhole or Twitter to search for the hashtag to see who is participating.
5) Celebrate the Winner(s)
Don’t forget that your contestants are taking part in the contest because they want to share their pictures. Reward all of your entrants. Thank them on social media for their photo. Compliment the photos as they come in. When you announce the winner, don’t just give them the prize, share who they are and their photo. Make them feel like rock stars. This way the next time you have a contest they will participate again, and those who didn’t win will want to try to be the next store celebrity.
Nick Pizzolato is the Marketing Content Manager at Wicked Local Media Solutions. For questions, topics for future blogs, or to share your favorite moment from the film “Back to the Future,” email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.