The Top 5 Apps For Your Next Social Media Contest

Running a social marketing campaign is a great way to build your email list and generate more engagement with customers and fans.

social media contest could be as simple as running small sweepstakes, or as complex as running a photo contest that includes social sharing, Instagram entry, and voting capabilities.

The good news is that there are a number of tools available that can help your brand easily create and deploy social media contests without having to write code or do much design.

We’ve done the research and found that these five social contest platforms are the best to help you quickly create and run a social media contest.

Read on to check out these five tools as well as a smart checklist for your next social media contest.

The Top 5 Social Media Contest Apps

1. Heyo

Heyo is a smart contest tool that caters to small businesses and agencies/consultants. They offer attractive contest templates, a simple, intuitive user interface, and great support.

A distinguishing feature of Heyo is that all of their contest apps are mobile responsive so you won’t miss out on any mobile leads.

Publishing Options: Facebook, Mobile, Website (Web version can also be embedded into your website)

Social Media Integrations: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn

Campaign Options: Sweepstakes, Photo Contest, Refer-a-Friend, Group Deal, Video Contest, Free Download.

Pricing: Heyo offers a 7-day free trial. After that, you can choose from several paid plans that start at $30/month.

Customer Case Studies: Trind – Dedication Company – Solo Stove

Other Thoughts

  • Heyo also offers a drag-and-drop contest builder so you can build your own contest app from scratch
  • They offer white labeling and high volume plans for agencies and large brands
  • Heyo runs regular webinars for customers to teach them how to be successful with contests


2. WooBox

Woobox is another option for creating social contests that offers an extensive library of contest apps to choose from. Their templates are also highly configurable and might be better for a business that has very specific requirements.

Publishing Options: Facebook, Website (Web versions are viewable on mobile but not all templates are mobile responsive)

Social Media Integrations: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube

Campaign Options: Sweepstakes, Coupons, Photo Contest, Quizzes, Polls, Brackets, Video Contests, Instant Win, Pin To Win

Pricing: Woobox offers a few contest apps that you can use for free. If you want to use any app that collects entries/emails, you’ll need to upgrade. Plans start at $30/month.

Customer Case Studies: Plant One – Paperchase – Fallsview Water Park

Other Thoughts

  • Woobox offers a ton of different contest apps to choose from. They have a very wide selection
  • Their platform offers a lot of options on their templates, but that also makes the interface more complicated
  • They also offer an option for running Facebook Ads through their platform, which is a nice complement to running a social contest


3. Shortstack

Shortstack is a drag-and-drop tool for building social contests and campaigns with oodles of features like event triggers, team plans, and deep analytics. With a wealth of available features and options, Shortstack works especially well for larger or more technical businesses.

Publishing Options: Facebook, Website (Web versions are viewable on mobile but are not fully mobile responsive)

Social Media Integrations: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest

Campaign Options: Sweepstakes, Voting, Photo Contest, Refer-a-Friend, Quizzes, Coupon

Pricing: Shortstack offers a minimal free plan that allows you to collect up to 25 entries and receive up to 5K pageviews. After that, Shortstack starts at $29/month or $13/month if you sign up for annual billing.

Customer Case Studies: Saving Abby – Cambria Inns – Madinks

Other Thoughts

  • Shortstack gives awesome price breaks when you sign up for an annual plan, typically over 50% off.
  • Because Shortstack campaigns are fully drag-and-drop they are highly editable and are better for customers who1 really care about the design details
  • They offer design services for customers who want to save time or have an expert run their campaign.


4. Wishpond

Wishpond is a platform offering multiple products like contests, landing pages, website pop-ups and email marketing. Among this broad array of services, they offer a good selection of template options for running social contests. The bonus is that once your contest is live, you can use Wishpond to run ads or execute on other marketing activities like landing pages or blog pop-ups.

Publishing Options: Facebook, Website, Mobile

Social Media Integrations: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest

Campaign Options: Sweepstakes, Photo Contest, Referrals, Video Contest, Coupon

Pricing: Wishpond is one of the more expensive options out there for running contests, probably because their plans come with other services as well. They offer a free plan that allows up to 200 entries. After that, it’s at least $69/month to continue. However, Wishpond offers a significant discount of 36% if you opt for annual billing.

Customer Case Studies: Spring 2016 Contest Examples

Other Thoughts

  • Wishpond offers a more complete suite of marketing solutions and is best suited for a business that wants to take advantage of their whole feature set.
  • The Wishpond contest builder is very technical and requires some time to figure out. Once you do, it’s pretty powerful.
  • Because they do so much, Wishpond offers a solid feature set including running ads, A/B testing, etc. If you’ve got the cash, then Wishpond is a powerful platform.


5. AgoraPulse

AgoraPulse is a full-service social media marketing platform that offers social contest apps as a key feature. They are a pricier option, but also come with post publishing, social media monitoring, and a smart mobile app.

Publishing Options: Facebook, Website, Mobile

Social Media Integrations: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest

Campaign Options: Sweepstakes, Photo Contest, Quiz, Instant Win, Coupon

Pricing: AgoraPulse is the priciest option we’re covering, but you get what you pay for. They offer a free trial that only allows up to 20 entries. After that, you’ll need to sign up for a paid plan, the cheapest of which is $99/month.

Customer Case Studies: Best Facebook Contests of 2014

Other Thoughts

  • AgoraPulse contest apps are pre-designed, allowing you to get a contest published faster.
  • They offer a $29/month pricing option but it doesn’t come with contests.
  • AgoraPulse offers strong agency options like seat management, advanced analytics, and page benchmarking.


Conclusion & Checklist

Now that you’ve got some great options for creating social media contest apps, you’re probably itching to get started. So I put together a quick checklist of next steps to help you stay focused.

Just follow these steps and you’ll get a successful social media campaign running in no time.

  1. Jot down your goals. A bigger email list? Building awareness? More likes on Facebook? This will help you stay focused on achieving the right outcome.
  2. Also, jot down a few thoughts about your target customer. Is it a middle-aged woman? Do they live near your business? What is most important to them? This will help give you some ideas about your promotion.
  3. Select a prize. With a clear picture of your target customer in your mind, you want to pick something that will be relevant and compelling to them.
  4. Select a contest platform from the list above. There are many great, affordable options available. I’ve tried to make it easy for you, but if you don’t like my suggestions, just search some other options out on your own.
  5. Build and launch your contest. This is the fun part! Create a contest page that is bright, inviting, and appeals to your target customers. If you’re feeling stuck you can watch this video to get some design tips.
  6. Promote your contest. Leverage every free channel you have available. Then consider smart, paid channels if you’d like.
  7. Analyze results. Take a look at your results. If you’re unhappy with how things went, analyze the outcomes piece by piece. Not enough impressions? Then you need to figure out how to get the word out. Is your conversion rate low? Consider a new design or a better prize/incentive. Remember, smart marketers test, and it might take a few tries to hit the perfect social contest for your business.


About the author: Jeff Bullas

jeff - profile picJeff is an entrepreneur, blogger, author, marketer and speaker and works with personal brands and business to optimize online personal and company brands with emerging technologies, content, social media technologies and digital marketing. He has spent most of his career involved with information technologies, telecommunications and the web.

This article was first published by Jeff Bullas