4imprint, LLC

| Updated: January 13, 2021 4 min read

From social media to drawings and even team challenges, contests are a fun and exciting way to engage audiences of all demographics—especially when you throw in crowd-favorite promotional giveaway items to use as prizes.

In addition, contests can also:

  • Raise brand awareness
  • Build community
  • Strengthen team bonds
  • Leave favorable impressions
  • Increase sales
  • Thank customers
  • And more!

Whatever your goals are, there is sure to be a contest strategy to help push your team toward that objective. Here are four ideas for hosting winning contests.


Social media contest

Social media contests are a great way to drive sales from your online followers. They can also be used to drive store visits, which can in turn be used to increase social fans.

For example, give all store visitors a wearable promotional giveaway item, like Fresh Light Sunglasses or a Lightweight Economy Cap. Encourage recipients to take photos of themselves wearing the item, post it on social media and tag your social channels.

Once a month, choose a winner from the pool of social media posters to win free products or services or a higher-end branded prize like a Boulder Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker or Engel 13-Quart Cooler.

The more photos customers post on social, the greater your brand’s reach. Likewise, the more people the contest posts reach, the greater your store traffic can be.


Big challenge

Host an employee or customer challenge with a simple rule: The more they participate, the more they could win.

Internally, use the challenge as a wellness initiative for team members. Whether the goal is to increase their step count or eat more fruits and veggies, encourage participants to track their progress. Reward the first goal met with a small prize, such as Healthy Hand Sanitizer Spray. As they continue to reach milestones, make the prizes bigger. For example, move on to a Guzzle Stainless Bottle and then an Exercise Mat.

For customers, set small challenges—for instance, stopping into the store, tagging your brand on social media, referring your business and so on. Again, the promotional giveaway item can increase in value as they hit each challenge. Start with something like a Refresh Simplex Tumbler and end with Epic True Wireless Ear Buds with Case.


Team scavenger hunt

 Join forces with other businesses to plan a big scavenger hunt. This is a great option to keep costs down while increasing overall exposure.

After multiple businesses have signed on to sponsor the contest, choose a time frame for participants to complete the scavenger hunt. Whether it’s a one-day event or a venture spanning several weeks, have participants complete one activity at each business.

Award each submitted entry with a small prize, like the Xander Mesh Print Pocket Tote. Then, choose a grand prize winner from the entries. The Whitby Laptop Backpack with USB Port and the ifidelity Bluetooth Headphones make great branded prizes.


Go easy

If a big challenge or scavenger hunt is too time-consuming, you can keep it simple with one of these easy-to-plan contest ideas.

Mail customers a Full Color Scratch Off Postcard and have recipients pick up their prize in a store.

Give out Stadium Cups and place stickers on several winning cups. If they choose a cup with a sticker, they win a prize.

Or, easier still, have customers pick a prize after every purchase. The Mardi Gras Pen or Power Clip are useful prizes now that will serve as brand reminders later.


Let the games begin!

Now you’re ready to launch your next contest. With a little planning and the perfect promotional giveaway items, your contest is sure to be a big success.