How to reach 21,000 highly targeted, local people for $10

Industry: Hospitality (local restaurant)

Type: Competition

The brief: Run a competition on Facebook to increase awareness in the local community and grow page following

Timeframe: 3 weeks

competition results


Recently, I ran a competition for a local restaurant (town size approx. 51,000 people). At the time, the page had just over 1000 followers and each post was getting around 5 likes and maybe one or two comments (if they were lucky). All in all, not amazing but we weren’t starting completely from scratch. Here are the steps we followed to maximise results:

Step 1: We sat down with the client and discussed what they wanted to achieve and what they were offering as a prize. The prize can make ALL the difference. The competitions that offer a voucher for Woolworths or Coles will flop. People don’t get excited about that. It’s also great to make sure the prize has something to do with your business. That way, the people who are entering and engaging with your brand are the ones who could potentially be customers. If you’re a pool cleaning business and you’re giving away a supermarket voucher, you can have every man and their dog enter but none of them may actually have a pool.

Step 2: We created a gorgeous graphic in line with their brand guidelines. We were sure to follow the 20% rule and keep it to a minimum. This image was 940px x 788px. In addition, we also created 6 different versions for Instagram to cross promote.

Step 3: We made sure the copy was SUPER clear. What can you win? What do you have to do to win? When will the winner be announced and how many times can you enter? All crucial pieces of information. We keep this copy to a minimum and straight to the point. People have a short attention span, keep it stupid simple for them.

Step 4: The original image was posted to the Facebook page and pinned to the top of the page.

Step 5: We changed the bio and web address on their Instagram. The bio encouraged people to click the link to enter the competition. This link led them straight to the Facebook post. To get the link to an individual Facebook post, simply click on the date on the post and it will open in a new window. Grab this URL and you’re set.

Step 6: We posted 6 times with the different Instagram image versions on Instagram. We always made sure to have the call to action ‘Click the link in our bio’ to direct traffic to the right place. Instagram does not offer clickable links in captions.

Step 7: We sat back and watched for around a week and a half. It was slow going to begin with but eventually (after about 2 days), it EXPLODED.

Step 8: After around a week and a half, the engagement really slowed. This is when we boosted the original post on Facebook for $10. This was simply using the local town audience. No age targeting, interest targeting or gender targeting. BOOM, it took off again.

Step 9: For anyone that liked the post (but not the page), we went through and clicked ‘invite to like page’ next to their name.

Step 10: A winner was chosen at random. We created a fresh ‘winner!’ graphic and posted this, tagging the winner and requesting they email the company. We also commented on the original competition and tagged the winner there too before thanking everyone (generally, not individually) for participating.


Final results:

Over 21,000 people reached.
Over 500 new page likes
96 shares (not something we asked people to do, but thanks guys!)

Given the local population is around 50,000, this is INCREDIBLE to see how for such a low cost, we can really raise awareness and get the business out there.