Tutorial: How to run a sweepstakes from Instagram comments

The Instagram Sweepstakes app enables you to import all the comments on an Instagram post and run a sweepstakes among all users who commented. You'll then be able to publish the winners on a customized page and display a Certificate of Validity to give transparency to your sweepstakes.


What you need to know before you start:

  • The functioning of the application is different depending on whether you use a personal Instagram profile or a Instagram business profile.
  • If you use a Instagram business profile, the platform uses the Facebook API, which allows you to obtain all the comments made on an Instagram post.
  • On the other hand, if you use a personal Instagram profile, the platform uses the Instagram API, which is limited and can only return the most recent comments of a post (it can vary between 100 and 150 comments). In order to obtain all the comments of an Instagram post we recommend you to switch your Instagram personal profile to a business profile, so you'll obtain all the comments of the post. Learn how to convert your Instagram profile to a business profile.


Below we describe the process for carrying out an Instagram sweepstakes:


Summary of the Instagram Sweepstakes Tutorial

In this tutorial, you'll find a step-by-step guide to setting up and launching your sweepstakes:


Step 1. Create and publish the post on Instagram

The first step is to publish the sweepstakes post on Instagram as you would with any other post.


Step 2. Access the Control Panel

Access the Easypromos Control Panel from this link. If you're not an Easypromos user, create an account and sign in to the control panel to create and manage your promotions.


This is your control panel:


A) Your account information is located in the upper bar of the window. Use your account ID (preceded by the # symbol) to identify yourself when requesting help from the Support Center.

B) This is the area where your promotions will be listed according to status: active, draft and finalized.


Step 3. Import the Instagram post

The next important step is to select the Instagram post that you've just published. 

To do this, follow these steps:

1. Click "Create New Promotion" to start setting up the sweepstakes.


2. Select "Instagram Sweepstakes".


3. You will be presented with the sweepstakes setup screen. As a first step, log in with Facebook if you have a business profile or Instagram if you have a personal profile:


Note: If this is your first Instagram sweepstakes, your first step should be to accept the app's permissions. We only use these to identify the Instagram account and collect the comments left on your posts. More information.


4. After logging in, you'll see the confirmation screen. Click "Accept and close" to continue.

5. Then select the type of sweepstakes by clicking on the "Comments" button to start setting up the sweepstakes:


6. Your next step should be to select the post you've just published in Instagram – the one you want to use to run your sweepstakes:select_post.jpg


Note: The "Instagram Sweepstakes" application is available for any Instagram post, photo or video. It's not available for Instagram Stories yet.
Note 2: Multiple sweepstakes on the same post can only be carried out with Instagram business profiles and with an active Easypromos subscription.


Step 4. Import comments

The process of importing comments works differently depending on whether your Instagram profile is a personal or a business profile.


A) Import comments from an Instagram business profile

In case of using an Instagram business profile, our platform uses the official Facebook API which allows to obtain all the comments on the post. This way, when you select the Instagram post, the platform will obtain all the comments of the post and will import them as participants of the sweepstakes.

If you don’t want to finish the sweepstakes yet, you can keep the sweepstakes in your control panel and when the participation period ends, you’ll only need to log in again, edit the same sweepstakes and follow step 5 of this tutorial.

Once you have imported the comments on a post, you can add new posts to the sweepstakes with a maximum of 10 posts, to carry out a sweepstakes between the comments of all the posts. This option is only available for Instagram business profiles.

B) Import comments from a personal Instagram profile

For personal profiles, Instagram can only return the most recent comments on a post, which may vary between 100-150. 

Note: In order to obtain all the comments of an Instagram post we recommend you to switch your Instagram personal profile to a business profile, as in this case, the official API from Facebook will be used to import the comments of an Instagram post. The Facebook API has no limitations and therefore allows to obtain all the comments. Learn how to convert your Instagram profile to a business profile



Step 5. Review the list of finalists and apply exclusions

You're on the open sweepstakes page. Beneath the title you'll find the number of participants and options for viewing the data. In this section, you'll also find various tools for filtering and excluding users from entering the sweepstakes. These tools enable you to establish the following dynamics:14.jpgThese tools enable you to establish the following dynamics:

  • Asking participants to be followers of one of more Instagram accounts.
  • Requiring users to include up to five mentions in a comment in order to enter the sweepstakes.
  • Filtering the finalists according to the hashtags they use in their comments.

Discover all the options for filtering and excluding users available in your Instagram sweepstakes.


Step 6. Define the number of winners and alternates

Next, indicate how many winners and alternate winners you need. We recommend always requesting alternate winners as it makes awarding the prizes easier and more efficient. Why?15.jpg


Click "Continue" and you'll be taken to the Test Page. Here you'll be able to carry out a test to see how the sweepstakes will work and how the winners will be displayed.


Step 7. Carry out a test and run the sweepstakes

Before you run the random sweepstakes, you have the possibility of carrying out a number of tests to see how the tool works.

Note: The possibility to make a test is not available for the first free sweepstakes.

When you are ready to make the sweepstakes, the system will allow you to finalize it to obtain the winners and alternates. In case you don’t have an active Basic subscription, the system will allow you to purchase it at this moment:


Once you have the Basic subscription active and you are ready to finalize the sweepstakes, click the "Ready! Pick the winners” button and winners will be picked randomly. Once the sweepstakes has been made, it can’t be repeated.16.jpg

Step 8. Prepare the announcement of winners

Congratulations! The sweepstakes has been carried out and the results will be displayed. You can now think about announcing the winners and awarding the prizes.


A. "Winners and Alternates" section:

Here you'll see the list of winners and alternates. From here you can manage the prize winners, and change them if needed.


B. "Claim your prize" section:

Do you want the winners to be able to confirm their details and claim their prize? You can set up and activate this section to aid in the prize-awarding process. This way, the user who visits the Winners Page will be able to claim the prize from there, verifying their details and confirming that they're interested in receiving the prize.


C. "Publication of winners" Section:

When you run the sweepstakes, the tool will generate two important URLs that you should be aware of:

  • Certificate of Validity URL. The Certificate of Validity confirms that the sweepstakes has been run once only and completely at random. This certificate identifies the sweepstakes and it can't be modified. Share the URL with winners so that participants can see that your sweepstakes was run fairly and transparently.
  • Winners Page URL. This is a microsite where the names of the winners and the alternate winners are displayed. This way, communicating the results will be easier. You'll be able to customize this page to adapt it to your brand and needs.

Click on the pencil icon to edit the Winners Page and customize it to fit your needs:19.jpg

Step 9. Contact the winners

When the Winners Page is ready, share it on social media. You can use the "Share on social media" button or copy and share the URL of the Winners Page directly.


Tip: If you'd like to announce the winners on Instagram, we recommend the two following actions:

  1. Publish the link to the Winners Page in the Bio of the organizing brand's Instagram account.
  2. Publish a post or a story where announce the result of the sweepstakes and that it can be seen in the Bio.
  3. Use your social media channels to share the link to the Winners Page. 

Keep in mind the fact that links in the comments or description of the photos in Instagram are not active and can't be clicked on.


Step 10. Notify the winners

In the 'Publication of winners' section you'll find the option to notify the winners directly. This tool will let you post a public comment on the sweepstakes post on Instagram mentioning the Instagram name of the winners. The winners will then receive an Instagram notification letting them know that they've been mentioned. 


This tool is limited to a maximum of five mentions and 300 characters. If you have a lot of winners, and the total text is more than 300 characters, you can copy the text provided by the system (including the mentions of all the winners) and then manually post the comment directly to your Instagram account.


Step 11. Manage winners and alternates

From the 'Winners and alternates' section you can:

  • See whether winners have claimed their prize, and review the details they've provided.
  • Manage the prizewinners and change them if necessary.
  • Download all the information provided by prizewinners in a file.
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