How to Enter Giveaways on Instagram and Social Media

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How to enter giveaways

How to Enter Giveaways on Instagram and Social Media

If you are just starting out on social media, you might need help with how to enter giveaways on any of the platforms. Because who doesn’t love to get things for free?

Quote of the day: “Luck is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity.” Oprah Winfrey

First, let me tell you some of my history. I really started entering giveaways when I first retired 6 years ago. I would spend hours on the computer entering every giveaway known to man. Did I win anything? Sure. I won an iPad, an Adirondack chair, among many other odds and ends.

Winning the iPad is what started me being on Instagram in the first place. Because at the time, I hardly used my phone. While most giveaways on social media are all a little different, knowing the terminology and language is helpful.

The biggest factor to winning is making sure you follow the rules to a tee. As someone who has hosted a couple of giveaways myself, not doing this is the easiest way to be disqualified.

Let’s Start with Terminology

Now get your phone out and let’s start learning.

If you’re not technologically savvy, you might need some help with the language that is used on social media.
This can get confusing so you might want to start with my post about Instagram Stories where I cover the Instagram basics. It’s a lot of information, but the best way to learn it is to have your phone with you as you read the post, and basically play along. And then review it a couple of times that same week.
I know for me at least, it takes more than one time to learn something new.

1-Tag Think about playing tag as a kid. What did you do? You ran up to someone and tapped them. That’s basically what you are doing on social media. It’s about typing in their feed name so they get a notification that you are talking to them.
How do you tag someone? You type the “@” before their handle (which is their name on Instagram). For example, if you wanted to tag me you would type @JTouchofstyle. This applies to Instagram and Facebook for me, but beware, some people have different names on different accounts.

2-Follow, Like, Comment & Share These are how you play along with the giveaway. A Follow means you “follow” a person’s account. A “Like” is where you click the heart button under the photo. “Comment” means to click that talk bubble and type some words. “Share” is the arrow button under the photo where you can send the post to your stories or to someone else’s stories.

The photo below is an example which shows where to locate the following descriptions:

1-That’s the “Like” button

2– Is the talk button to “Comment”

3– That is the “Share” arrow

4– As an extra credit, this is the “Save” bookmark. When you like a post and want to refer back to it, save it here. I’ll tell you below how to get to your saved posts.

Insider tip: You can also “Like” a photo by double clicking on the photo itself instead of trying to click in that tiny heart.

Are All Giveaways the Same?

There are a multitude of giveaways. For the sake of keeping it simple, I’ll categorize them into two different kinds. Since it’s my post, I’ll also give my opinions about them. Remember, these are just my opinion.

The Instagram Loop Giveaway

What is it? It’s a giveaway that included multiple accounts generally like 10 or more.
These are the ones that will say to follow someone (and they will tell you their name with an @ before their handle) and then follow the person in the next post, and so on until it gets back to the original post at which you started. Lately, they’ve also been telling you to follow someone and EVERYONE they follow.

The prize in these giveaways is usually a huge amount of money or big ticket item.
Now, I’m not an expert on these kinds of giveaways. I’ve heard rumors that no one actually wins and some may not be legitimate. But I’m not here to spread rumors. I don’t enter these because it’s a lot of work and I figure my odds aren’t good.

How to enter giveaways on Instagram

Smaller Giveaways

I will group all the others giveaways under this category. This is the type that I like to enter and where I think your chances to win are much better. Usually you are following a 2-5 people/companies (and they are upfront about this at the beginning) and the winnings can be a product or gift card.

What have I won lately from giveaways like these? I’ve won a $100 gift card to Massage Envy that I used for a facial, some skin care products, and a pair of booties from Cecelia New York (out of my budget normally).

How to Enter Giveaways

So let me give you the basics about most of these smaller giveaways and how to enter them so you have the best odds of winning.

1-Make sure to read ALL the rules and directions first. It’s not always easy to know if it’s a loop giveaway until you see the verbage about following everyone. The smaller giveaways will list all who you need to follow in the post you’re reading. For example, see my post here where we listed the 3 accounts you needed to follow.

2– If you don’t understand one of the directions, either DM the person putting on the giveaway (more info about DM below) or google it.

3– When a rule says to tag a friend in the comments and then that multiple comments = multiple entries (or something like that), it means you should comment many times with your friends who like giveaways. Let me give you an example.
One comment would be @myfriend. You will post this.
After you comment, you are still in that post and can comment again.So just tag another friend like @myfriend4 and post.
This can happen again and again. Just tag a different friend @myfriend100 and then click post.
Do this countless times for your best chance to win.

Now some giveaways say you need to tag three people. If that’s the case, you need to tag them all in one comment. Your comment would look like this:
@myfriend @myfriend4 @myfriend100. I just space between the tags but you can place commas.

4-Lately there have been many giveaways that ask you to share in your stories. It’s that share arrow that I showed above. Normally once you click that arrow, you have the option to “Add Post to you Story.” When you do that, a photo of that post appears in your Instagram Stories. NOW the important part is you must tag that person here. Otherwise they will have no idea that you shared it.
You will see their handle under the photo but trust me, you still need to tag them. But this helps you remember what to type in to tag them. There are 2 ways to tag someone in IG stories.
A. Click the “Aa” in the upper right corner and search for the “@” sign. And then type in their handle.
B. Click the square, smiley face icon at the top middle which gives you all kind of fun options. The top middle option is a tag option so you don’t have to type the “@”. Just put in the person’s handle.
After all of this, make sure to click your photo in the lower left corner where it says “Your Stories” (there should be a facebook icon next to it, so it will share to FB stories also)

Now What

The best part about tagging your friends is then they can enter the giveaways too. Maybe you should forward this how to enter giveaways post to them so they are in the know also? This works in reverse also. Many times my friends will tag me so then I can enter and possibly win.

If you did win, you need to make sure to check your DMs regularly. Do you know what a DM is? Some people call it PM (personal message), DM (direct message) or just message. It’s basically a text or email in the Instagram app. See the example below.

I’m sure much of this seems complicated. However, I believe that it’s just like anything in life. The more you do it, the easier it gets. And like I said before, who doesn’t love winning things?
And if any of this doesn’t make sense, reach out to me and ask! I’m always happy to try to help.

Now go out and put all your recently learned information about how to enter giveaways to good use. And make sure to tag me so I can enter too! If you win something, I’d love to hear what because I understand how exciting it is.

Do You Know the Why about Giveaways?

Here’s me keeping it real. While you enter a giveaway to get something for “free,” we know there is no such thing as “free”. The reason these giveaways are there are to either get some more “follows” or engagement for the person/s putting it on. Truthfully that’s why I’ve sponsored them.
Sometimes it’s because a company wants to get more exposure to a new product.

For influencers, most companies will look at our “numbers” meaning how many followers we have and how many “likes” and “comments” we get. While one post won’t make a huge difference, it can help to show Instagram that we have material that others like.

Yet for most people following others is easy and it is free! Figuring out how to enter giveaways is a whole different language if you’re new to it. So I hope this post was helpful. I suggest you do enter more of these smaller giveaways. They really are fun and a great way to get “free” stuff.

Extra Credit Saved Bookmark

I promised I’d tell you how to get to those posts that you just loved and saved. Think of them like the posts on Pinterest where you save them to your boards. Now to get to them:

1– Go to the person icon at the bottom of the screen. In the photo of my mom and I above, it’s a the person icon in the lower left.

2– Now look in the upper right corner and you should see 3 lines. (There may be a red circle on them too). Click on the lines and it will give you a menu.

3-About halfway down is the saved bookmark icon. Click on it.

4-Now something I JUST learned today (See? Even I don’t know everything) is you can have categories for your saved posts (just like you have different boards on Pinterest). There is a “+” button on the upper right that you can use to categorize. Otherwise, they fall into the “All Posts” grouping.

Insider tip: Finding your way around Instagram is all about exploring. That’s how the younger kids learn nowadays. Click all the buttons you see and check out what it gives you. The other secret is to swipe. If you are somewhere without directions on what to do next, try swiping up, down, left or right.


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