Social Media Competitions Suck At Building New Customers

Mark Masters
Managing Director of Bournemouth based creative marketing company, The ID Group. Helping to position businesses as the authority in their industry and providing advice, opinion and guidance for brands to be the 'go to' choice.
Mark Masters
Mark Masters
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Do social media competitions open new doors for you?

Social media competitions can be cost effective and easy to run, but not necessarily a tool for winning more customers.

Ask yourself, is it about building a community when in reality it is not about building a dialogue, just someone wanting a prize.


So, Why Bother With A Social Media Competition?

We thought earlier this year, at The ID Group that if we ran competitions then we’d grow a fan-base. Here is why we wanted to create a social media competition:

  • use social media channels in a way that was different to broadcast a message
  •  use alternative means to create a dialogue with people
  • give prizes away that were not geographically sensitive ie. cinema tickets
  •  create an element of fun and build up
  •  build recognition to The ID Group brand
What Lessons Are There To Be Learnt?

This is what we realised and looking back some lessons learnt.

  • Rather than a loyal community, what takes it’s place are followers/fans who
    like free stuff and not much else
  • By giving away prizes, whilst being aware of the geographical nature, the demographic wasn’t necessarily a wishlist of potential prospects (so doesn’t compliment the target markets)
  • The majority of people are “˜engaging’ with you because of a prize, not to build a dialogue
  • You may receive new followers (and looks great when others see you brimming with popularity), but the likelihood of becoming customers is pretty slim
  •  It becomes an almost faceless exercise. It’s great when receiving information from new people, but do we know who these people are (and to build a dialogue with)


So If This Isn’t The Best Way To Build A Loyal Community, What Is?

Over the following blog articles, we’ll highlight some examples where looking to build a community has worked in 2012. The secret, looking to provide information and value to people that they can use, share and interact with. There are no shortcuts to building a following and a competition is by no means a quick win.

Before you go and buy that new iPad mini for your next competition, have a think. If it’s to use as a tool to build a committed following to your brand, think again! 


  1. Twitter:
    Hi Mark ! you are at the right point. it is not competition but building more relation with global people. when we talk about social media optimization, it really important to come over form low traffic rate to viral traffics. in this competitive internet ages, social media plugin can help to move one step forward and easily monetize the ideas. when we think innovative ideas then it need to share with other people also need to learn from them.

    its time to share and get care from others. social media interaction became the habitual food for every guys and they want to get more features from it and social media also adding different features to engage more time in their site.
    it help to blogger and web site publisher to get lots of readers to their site. so that effective and positive interaction in social media can be fruitful.
    Googma Sansar recently posted..Social Media Optimization (SMO) StrategyMy Profile

  2. Twitter:
    There are millions of people who are addicted to entering competitions for prizes and they are not going to stay loyal to a brand just because of one prize. They simply move on swiftly to the next prize offering somewhere else.
    I don’t think its worthwhile running comps on social media sites just for a few likes (I believe Facebook isn’t tolerant of such comps and likes any more either). If you are going to run a comp then why not generate subscribers to your own site or newsletter? Then you could have them perform an “action” on your site like uploading a photo or adding phrase or comment to a post.. in order to be in for the prize that’s up for grabs.
    Granted some might subscribe then never return but at least you have their information and might be able to reach out to them easily later on with other tempting prizes and offers?
    Karen Maskall recently posted..Pledging for Change Competition SwoopsMy Profile

  3. Twitter:
    Social media is very important while it comes to building new customers. We should use social media effectively.
    Prakash recently posted..Download Subway Surfers for PC, Android FreeMy Profile

  4. Twitter:
    yes Free is a magical word.It is really catchy and able to attract everyone.Giving something in free is really a nice idea. Giveaways are the best for doing this.Thanks for sharing this nice post with us .
    Mahendra recently posted..List of best torrent sites for movie downloadMy Profile

  5. Twitter:
    Hey Mark,
    Nice post and Thanks for sharing these tips with us. Yes, organizing contest and free reward really help in building relations. Social media sites are very important factor in blogging and helps in making new relations.
    Sudipto recently posted..Free Call App For AndroidMy Profile

  6. rockingsindi says:

    As to attract new customer you need new strategies and uniqueness and with social media both things are possible and therefore only it become more popular for attracting new customers but as many fails to attract them that means they made any mistake while applying their strategy or they don’t have any uniqueness in their campaigning

  7. Twitter:
    There are a lot of Social Media competitors out of what we need to survive. We must satisfy our current customers to make new happy, Nice put man!
    Jafar Dhada recently posted..Viber for PC, Viber for Windows 7/8/XPMy Profile

  8. Twitter:
    social media competition really sucks when it comes to building new customers. Thanks for sharing this nice post.
    Lalita Bisht recently posted..ES File Explorer apkMy Profile

  9. Twitter:
    While it comes to build new customers the competition we get in the social media is too high. So it’s not possible to get rid of it. Everyone is using social media. We can use the optimum strategy for it.
    Priyank Pandey recently posted..Birthday SMS for Lover | Happy Birthday SweetheartMy Profile

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