KickoffLabs Blog:

Contest Strategies for Beginners

By Hannah Denson

Mar 3rd, 2022

Before working for KickoffLabs, I was a KickoffLabs user. Here I’ll share my experience with creating a contest for a small business with KickoffLabs along with some key tips to creating a successful campaign as a beginner.

The Reason Behind My Campaign

The store I managed, The Copper Petal is a small women’s clothing boutique located in Clarksville, Tennessee. During the pandemic, we knew it was time to strategize boosting our online marketplace. We focused largely on social growth to get there. During this time, we had a few viral Tiktoks with 400+ thousand views each that grew our TikTok account from 300 to 11k followers overnight and brought a few thousand followers on Instagram overnight as well. We decided to celebrate with an interaction giveaway with a vacation contest for two including flights, shopping, and an airBnB credit. We wanted to give an incentive for our loyal customers and increase online interaction. Our goal was to gain 5k instagram followers in a month.


Why KickoffLabs

For this scale of a giveaway a feed interaction post contest format was just not enough, so I searched for a way to incorporate a pop-up on our website landing page and stumbled upon KickoffLabs. The templates were so easy to use and gave me everything I needed for this campaign: a point system heavily weighted on interaction and follows, email list growth, and purchase tracking while also un-complicating the winner selection process. 

Shopify Integration

Once the templates were built and our campaign was ready to go live, the Shopify website integration process began. It seemed intimidating at first but luckily there are some really great step by step demos to work through here: Shopify Integration - AnyForm - KickoffLabs Support.

One-One Call with KickoffLabs

There is also the option to schedule a one on one call with the KickoffLabs team for more hands on technical help. I followed these steps and had no issues once the contest went live. You can learn more about KickoffLabs features here: Giveaway Resources to increase the odds that your KickoffLabs campaigns succeed

The main pop up/contest box (Contest Box - KickoffLabs Support) was on our landing page and another small reminder stayed at the bottom while customers scrolled. I was able to customize color and design to our branding so it looked great too! The email sign up portion also linked directly to our shopify store so we could track customer spending increases correlated to the contest. 

Promoting the Contest

We promoted lightly through a few Tiktoks, Instagram and Facebook posts, along with story features by a local influencer who we partnered the giveaway with. We also shared daily on our instagram stories and encouraged customers to share when they entered as well. We did not run any paid promotions.

Contest Results

During this giveaway, our social interaction increased as well as our follower count. This particular campaign was focused on rewarding our loyal customers for continuing to be active with us amidst COVID. Our campaign ran for one month. From  minimal promotion, we were able to gain: 

  • 1,100+ new email subscribers 
  • 3k new instagram followers. 
  • Increased online sales from out of state 

Tips for Contest First-Timers

This was my first ever campaign of this kind so I really did not know what I was getting into. Here are 5 recommendations from the outcome I had.

Use KickoffLabs Resources

This may sound obvious but seriously, check out all of the resources available. Do some research before starting your campaign, schedule a demo, and look at other companies’ success stories. You can even ask for feedback on your campaign from the support team before launching. I jumped in just looking for a pop-up for my contest and did not fully realize how much these resources could have boosted my campaign. If you are looking for some real growth, fully commit to your campaign through the giveaway resources available. Here are some of my favorite helpful tools:

Marketing guide- The Ultimate Guide to Marketing Your Startup Online Without a Big Budget | KickoffLabs

General resources-  Giveaway Resources to increase the odds that your KickoffLabs campaigns succeed

You get out what you put in

You can easily generate leads using the templates that are available and sharing on your business’s platforms like we did. However, if you are looking to skyrocket the growth of a certain aspect of your business (your email list for example), really go all in with promoting your campaign. Set some goals for your contest results, decide how much marketing spend you want to use, and get creative with the way you talk about it.  Here is a great blog to get your marketing started: Launch like a PRO: 8 Hacks for Building Your Audience | KickoffLabs

Work with influencers

Two+ platforms are better than one when it comes to spreading the word. Find someone influential who’s platform represents your brand cohesively, or work with multiple people to broaden your platform reach. You may end up with a crowd of ideal customers that you never would have reached without the help of an influencer.

Think about what your consumer wants

Represent your brand in a way that connects with your specific ideal audience. We used a trip giveaway because our customers often mentioned that they wanted to shop for clothes but had nowhere to go. We decided there was no better way to treat the lucky winner than to give them something fun to look forward to. Along with this, keep your giveaway easy to enter, make the reward something relatable to your customers or your product, and make it attainable- people are more likely to enter if they see that they genuinely have a chance of winning.

Talk about it

All the time. Every chance you get. Whenever it comes up. Whenever you can naturally make it come up. Word of mouth is the best marketing tool for small businesses. We made sure every customer who came through the door knew about the giveaway and how to enter. We encouraged them to tell their friends through the referral link while they were in store. If you want your contest to spread, talk about it. Not only that, but talk about it across your social media too. Have your employees share, post about it, make reels and stories, and of course- add that KickoffLabs pop up to your landing page.


My first experience with KickoffLabs was ultimately a success for the outcome we were looking for and if you follow these steps, yours can be too. The biggest takeaways from all of this are:

  1. Know that if you are considering adding a giveaway to your landing page, it is absolutely worth doing, even if you have never done it before. You can start off simple, track your success and decide where you want to improve from there.
  2. A big separation KickoffLabs has from others is the extensive amount of readily available resources and one on one support. If you are just starting out or even working on a more complex campaign, the KickoffLabs support team will help make it happen.
  3. You can give KickoffLabs a try with a free account and set up your campaign before ever paying for a plan! I think you’ll be sold once you see how smooth the creation process is.

Create a powerful referral program today!

Word of mouth marketing made easy with viral giveaways, referral programs, or product launches designed to grow your business!

Get a Demo