How To Conduct A TikTok Contest To Drive More Engagement

August 03, 2021

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How To Conduct A TikTok Contest To Drive More Engagement

It didn’t take TikTok much time to become one of the biggest social networks on the Internet, with a couple of billion views a month. And content creators and businesses don’t need much time to realize that this platform is an amazing way to build their audience base, including cost-effective methods like running a TikTok contest.

Since TikTok is a breed apart, where even a small player could sweep the world away overnight with a trendy challenge, it also has its own considerations. Allow us to break them down for you.

Differences Between TikTok Challenges And Contests

Challenges and challenge-related viral clips have made a name for TikTok by creating hot trends that can pull in thousands of participants and many million views worldwide.

TikTok contests may look like those challenges, but they bear some differences that, as a content creator or business, you should not get wrong.

TikTok challenges are organic trends that are under no absolute control of any business or brand. They come from a call to action (CTA), particularly to carry out and record a specific activity among TikTok users, usually in the form of a viral dance move or song.

Notable examples of these TikTok trends are the Egg Challenge, which asks people to give their dog an egg and see its reaction, or the Renegade Challenge, where challenged participants (including celebrities like Kourtney Kardashian) uploaded a video of them dancing to a complex routine.

The popular Egg Challenge

In sharp contrast to challenges, TikTok video contests are started by a specific entity, such as a brand or organization.

The point of these campaigns is to ask participants to make TikTok videos that adhere to a set of guidelines. After the deadline, there will be a prize for the winning entry.

While contests could turn into a TikTok challenge if they could leverage the viral nature of TikTok, this isn’t the norm and usually not the organizer’s intention.

Benefits Of Organizing A TikTok Contest

With the massive amount of views and supercharged growth, TikTok is one of the go-to choices these days if you want to gather more fans and likes for your organization and brand.

Across Android and iOS platforms, TikTok has more than 2 billion downloads and skews a young demographic (most TikTok active users are under 30).

This rapidly expanding social media platform creates an opportunity for any business to establish a firm presence in its target market.

Benefits Of Organizing A TikTok Contest
TikTok has a huge young user base

A TikTok contest is a cost-effective marketing strategy to make use of TikTok’s viral videos and drive more engagement to your business.

Compared to running ads on TikTok, organizing a contest could grab attention from an audience beyond your existing followers in a more organic way.

How To Run A TikTok Contest

While TikTok contests might not be as complicated as ads, there are some vital steps you have to execute with care and attention to ensure that your contest has the best chance of success.

Set A Goal

Take a step back and think about what you and your brand want to achieve with this TikTok contest and how it fits into the bigger picture – your marketing strategy in the long run.

Do you want to grow a massive following as soon as possible to kickstart your new business? Drive more sales with greater product awareness? Make a young audience base become familiar with your brand?

TikTok has established itself as a massive community, which equals a huge opportunity to improve your brand’s presence. But much like other social media platforms, you can’t expect that any contest idea for any scenario will yield the best results.

A simple prize itself isn’t a sure-fire way to reach your marketing goal. In addition to luck, a great understanding of how TikTok works and what your target audience is seeking while scrolling between user-generated videos is vital to your contest.

How To Run A TikTok Contest
TikTok challenge practice

Due to the viral nature of TikTok, the most common purpose of organizing a contest is driving more engagement, meaning views, shares, follows, and comments.

When all these metrics improve, the algorithm of TikTok will push your content into a bigger audience, expanding your reach most organically.

Choose A Prize

After making up your mind about the campaign’s goals, it’s time to select a prize that could tempt your audience into participating in the contest with their TikTok competition ideas.

Nobody will bother to spend their time making a video in accordance with some official contest rules if your prize isn’t enticing enough.

A considerable budget will give you a huge advantage.

Large brands and established personalities could invest in some valuable prizes, such as high-end smartphones, professional cameras, jewelry, vacations, tickets to exclusive events, or simply a big cash prize.

If you don’t have such a luxury, it doesn’t mean your brand couldn’t run a successful TikTok contest either. You could send the winners skincare products, cosmetics products, AirPods, or gift cards.

Choose A Prize for tiktok contenst
AirPods are a popular prize.

As long as these prizes are relevant to your business and your audience, you could get the word out and hold a TikTok contest with great results.

Set Up Official Rules And Guidelines

Every competition should have an easy-to-follow set of guidelines, and your TikTok contest is no exception. It doesn’t just clear up confusion among your viewers but also helps you manage the entries and pick a winner later on.

Set down in clear language the kind of action participants have to take to join your contest. Your followers should have no issue understanding which video is a valid entry and which steps they need to take to submit it.

Common requirements include:

  • Watch a video
  • Follow your profile
  • Share a video
  • Use a branded hashtag
  • Comment on a video

All these actions play an important role in driving more engagement to the TikTok profile of your brand, giving it the best chance to be suggested to more users.

Launch Your TikTok Contest

After designing your contest, it’s time to announce it. You can announce your TikTok contest right on your social media profiles and a dedicated landing page, blog post, or widget on your webpage.

  • Put up a video on your TikTok to notify your followers about the contest and how they can enter. Stay true to the spirit of TikTok by producing short, casual, and fun clips. You could even exaggerate your message with silly dances and intense music and incorporate the CTA in the video.
  • Share the contest with the followers of all your other social media profiles to maximize reach and engagement.
  • If your website already has significant traffic, a blog post or landing page could draw more attention to your contest. A welcome banner or your sidebar is a great location on your website for this purpose. Don’t forget to inform your email subscribers about your TikTok contest as well.
  • Occasionally post an update about your contest on your TikTok account and other social media channels. These reminders will get the most out of your contest by keeping your participants engaged and excited about the final results.

A typical TikTok contest widget

Pick And Announce The Winner

After the contest has reached its deadline, you should not let your followers wait long for the results. The exact procedure for choosing a winner depends on how you have structured your contest.

Reveal the final results in the places you have used to announce the contest. Provide some details about your campaign, including the number of video submissions, the winner, and a thank-you to all the participants of your contest.

Contact the winner and arrange to send the prize to them.

Review Your Contest

Remember that running a TikTok contest isn’t about giving a random prize to a random person. Once the campaign has concluded, it’s time to measure its results and whether it has lived up to your expectations.

TikTok’s Analytics Tool

Access the Analytics of your TikTok Pro account to review the performance of your videos and followers. You can access this dashboard from the mobile app or desktop.

The data should give you a rough idea about whether you have run an effective TikTok contest and which improvements you should make in the next campaign.

Tips On Organizing A Successful TikTok Contest

The advertising and community guidelines of TikTok don’t mention much about contests organized on this platform. But this doesn’t mean you should rely entirely on luck to run your contest. Here are some basic recommendations you can follow.

Take Advantage Of TikTok Branded Hashtags

By leveraging a unique hashtag, you could help your followers feel a sense of community surrounding your brand.

The community element of branded contest hashtags will help drive more targeted user-generated content and impressions while monitoring them also give you valuable feedback.

You could understand how your audience interacts with and perceives your business and marketing campaign.

Use Third-party Contest Tools

Organizing a social media contest with thousands of participants could be quite a challenge to manage. There are many tools, plugins, and apps to make these admin tasks much easier.

They could take a lot of work out of the process by helping you design a widget with custom branding, manage entries, and pick a winner.

Understand Which Kind Of Content Will Perform Well On TikTok

Part of the reason TikTok has become so popular is that people go here to seek a different type of content. While sentimental, shocking, or controversial posts could do well on YouTube or Facebook, TikTok is mostly about fun dance challenges and trends.

You will want to tap into the replicability of the TikTok community to give your contest a bigger chance of gaining traction and attract more engagement.

Final Words

The type of content that does well on TikTok is different from what is popular on YouTube or Facebook.

That’s why you will want to adapt your strategy to conduct a successful TikTok contest. Be creative, make your audience excited, and it will bring lots of value to your business by generating more brand awareness and engagement.

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