Tutorial: How to create a Hashtag Contest

Hashtag contests are available in the Premium and White Label versions of Easypromos. They enable you to import all the tweets, photos and videos that contain a predefined hashtag from Twitter and Instagram. This allows you to carry out a variety of actions, such as:

  • Collecting all the participants who’ve used the hashtag, obtaining their usernames in whichever social network they’ve participated from.
  • Running one or more sweepstakes among participants.
  • Displaying the tweets and/or posts in a public gallery that you can publish as an app to your Facebook Page, webpage or blog.

In this article we take you through the steps you need to follow in order to: collect all the participants who’ve used the hashtag (importing tweets and Instagram posts); run a sweepstakes among participants to select a random winner; and optionally, activate and publish the gallery.

 

Step 1. Create the promotion

1. Access the Easypromos Control Panel and log in with your email address and password to manage and create your promotions.

1.jpg

2. Create a new promotion via the ‘Create new promotion’ button. 

New_promotion.jpg

3. You will be shown the different products available. Choose “Hashtag Contest” to create a promotion for importing tweets and Instagram posts with your predefined hashtag.

hashtags_1.jpg

4. Go on to step 2 and choose the platform version to use (Premium or White Label).

Recruiters2.jpg

5. Your promotion is already created! In the background, you can see the promotion management page. A pop-up window will ask you some extra information in order to help you with pre-settings. If you are not interested, you can skip this step.

 6. Now you find yourself in the promotion management page, where you have all the options for configuring the promotion. Below we outline all the most relevant sections:

hashtags_2.jpg

 

  1. Header. You will find the title of the promotion, the version and other relevant information such as the ID number of the promotion, which identifies each promotion. Give this number to the Easypromos team if you have any issues with the promotion. This will make it easier for them to review your settings.
  2. Quick button to Preview the promotion. When clicking this button, the Preview tool will open in a new browser window, so you can continue working comfortably in the promotion and, at the same time, preview how the final result is going.
  3. Link to the promotion. This is the URL that you should use in all the dissemination actions that you are going to carry out. More information here.
  4. Copy link button. Here you'll be able to automatically copy the link to disseminate the promotion.
  5. Activate Promotion button. When you have the promotion prepared and ready to launch, click this button to activate and start it. This button will take you to the activation page, where you can review the billing information to proceed to make the payment of the promotion.
  6. Side menu. Here you will find all the configuration options of the promotion.
  7. Promotion status. It indicates the status of the promotion: Draft, Active or Expired, as well as if it’s about to start. Once the promotion period has ended, this field will be marked in red saying: Status: Expired. What to do: Here you can choose what you want to show in the URL of the promotion.
  8. Link to the configuration tutorial. For each type of application you have available from here the link to the step-by-step tutorial so you do not miss any important step.
  9. Direct access to configuration options within the Editor. This module presents the access to the edition of the following sections which are located within the Editor:
    • Management of the dates and the time zone that will have the promotion.
    • Languages: It indicates the default language of the promotion and it allows you to change it if you need it.
    • Localization: It allows to limit the participation to one or several countries (option included by default in the Premium and the White Libel promotions, and in the Basic version by purchasing the additional extension). More information.

 

Step 2. Enable Twitter and/or Instagram integration

The platform comes preconfigured with a number of features that will depend on the type of application you’ve chosen. Even so, there are always a number of options you should check.

In “Integrations” you can activate Twitter and Instagram integration. Integration with each of these networks functions separately, so you can decide which platform to import content from: Twitter only; Instagram only; or both. In addition, you can set up a different hashtag for each platform. This means that even though the application will gather content from both hashtags into a single database, you’ll be able to see which social network the content comes from.

Read our tips on how to define your contest hashtag.

Access the “Integrations” section:

hashtags_3.jpg

 

Here you’ll find all the platforms you can integrate the application with.

hashtags_4.jpg

A) Twitter integration

All users with an active Twitter account and public profile can participate.

Clicking on the “Twitter” section will give you access to the Settings Panel. Next, click “Enable” to activate integration and view the options.

hashtags_5.jpg

Activate the options you require for your contest/sweepstakes:

Hashtag_Contest_1.jpg

1. Hashtag/s. Add the hashtag that you’ll use and communicate so that Twitter users can submit their photos, videos and comments. You’ll be able to insert a maximum of 3 hashtags. In case of inserting more than 1 hashtag, the system will import any tweet that contains at least 1 of the 3 hashtags. That is: users will be able to use any of the 3 hashtags but they’ll need to use at least one of them.

Use several hashtags to: consider all possible variations of a word or even spelling mistakes and typos made by users when typing the hashtag. Some examples are: #ContestDesign and #ContestDesing or #GrammyContest and #GrammmyContest.

Don’t use several hashtags to: require users to use two hashtags to enter. In order to do so use the keywords instead as we explain you below.

Important: Don’t include the # symbol and make sure you don’t leave any blank spaces.

2. Type of content to import. Choose the type of tweet you wish to import:

  • All types: the application will read and import all tweets, irrespective of whether they have photos and videos attached.
  • Images only: the application will only read and import tweets that contain images.
  • Videos only: the application will only read and import tweets that contain videos.
  • Images + videos: the application will read and import all tweets that contain images and videos.

Learn how to correctly set up the app according to the type of content you want to import.

3. Excluded users. Fill in this field with Twitter users whose content you don’t want to import. For example, it’s a good idea to add the name of the Twitter user who is organizing the contest. If there are any users making inappropriate use of the hashtag you can limit their participation by including them in this field.

4. Only one entry per user. Check this option if you wish to allow a single participation per Twitter user.

5. Exclude retweets. Check this option if you don’t want retweeted images to be published in the contest’s photo gallery. This means that even if a tweet has been retweeted various times by friends of a participant,only the tweet originally tweeted by the participant will be published. This will prevent the user from taking part in the contest with more than one photo.

6. Advanced filter by Keywords. The user will be required to include at least one of the keywords in order for the tweet to import. Keywords allow to set up an additional filter to the hashtag. Leave the field empty if you don’t require an additional filter.

Important: If you set up several keywords, these are excluding. Users will only need to use one of them.

You can insert any word as a keyword, and this includes a @mention to the brand or #hashtags. This will allow you to create contests where users should post a tweet with a mandatory #hashtag and a mandatory @mention to the brand, or a first mandatory #hashtag (set up in the ‘Hashtag’ field), and a second mandatory #hashtag (set up in the ‘Keywords’ field).

From the promotion management page you’ll be able to easily filter participants according to the keywords used. Learn here how to do it.

7. Enable reply message. Check this option if you would like to create an automatic response message to be sent to Twitter users that take part in the contest. You should:

  • Connect your Twitter account. This will be the account from which the auto-response text will be sent.
  • Write the message after “@username” fixed element: the tool will substitute it for the participating user, to activate the answer.

B) Instagram Integration

All users with an active Instagram account can participate by posting the photo or video from their public profile.

Clicking on “Instagram” will give you access to the Settings Panel. Next, click “Connect” to activate integration and view the options.

hashtags_6.jpg

If it is the first time that you connect this Instagram account through Easypromos, it will request you to accept the following permissions to access at your Instagram information:

 

Once the permissions are accepted, the platform will contact to your Instagram account:

The settings to Instagram integration will appear. Activate the options you’re interested in for your contest/sweepstakes:

Hashtag_Contest_2.jpg

1. Hashtag/s. Add the hashtag that you’ll use and communicate so that Twitter users can submit their photos, videos and comments. You’ll be able to insert a maximum of 3 hashtags. In case of inserting more than 1 hashtag, the system will import any tweet that contains at least 1 of the 3 hashtags. That is: users will be able to use any of the 3 hashtags but they’ll need to use at least one of them.

Use several hashtags to: consider all possible variations of a word or even spelling mistakes and typos made by users when typing the hashtag. Some examples are: #ContestDesign and #ContestDesing or #GrammyContest and #GrammmyContest.

Don’t use several hashtags to: require users to use two hashtags to enter. In order to do so use the keywords instead as we explain you below.

Important: Don’t include the # symbol and make sure you don’t leave any blank spaces

2. Advanced filter by Keywords. The user will be required to include at least one of the keywords in order for the tweet to import. Keywords allow to set up an additional filter to the hashtag. Leave the field empty if you don’t require an additional filter.

Important: If you set up several keywords, these are excluding. Users will only need to use one of them.

You can insert any word as a keyword, and this includes a @mention to the brand or #hashtags. This will allow you to create contests where users should post a tweet with a mandatory #hashtag and a mandatory @mention to the brand, or a first mandatory #hashtag (set up in the ‘Hashtag’ field), and a second mandatory #hashtag (set up in the ‘Keywords’ field).

From the promotion management page you’ll be able to easily filter participants according to the keywords used. Learn here how to do it.

3. Type of content to import. Choose the type of tweet you wish to import:

  • All Types: the application will read and import both photos and videos from Instagram.
  • Only Photos: the application will only read and import photos from Instagram.
  • Only Videos: the application will only read and import videos from Instagram.

Learn how to correctly set up the app according to the type of content you want to import.

4. Excluded users. Fill in this field with Instagram users whose content you don’t want to import. For example, it’s a good idea to add the name of the Instagram user who is organizing the contest. If there are any users making inappropriate use of the hashtag you can limit their participation by including them in this field.

5. Only one entry per user. Check this option if you wish to allow a single participation per Instagram user.

Warning! It is not possible to enable an automatic reply message for Instagram participants, but you can contact them with a comment on their posts from Easypromos platform. Learn more about Instagram’s policy to write comments and how you can contact the participants commenting their posts.

Important note: Even that the user tags an old picture/video with the hashtag of the contest, Instagram will not publish it as one of the latest pictures/videos that have used this specific hashtag, as they specify in their technical documentation. Therefore, as a recommendation we suggest you to encourage participants to create and publish new pictures/videos instead of reusing old ones.

If you’re not interested in presenting the texts, photos or videos in a public gallery go directly to Step 7.

 

Step 3. Set up the gallery (optional)

If you’re interested in displaying the imported content in a gallery and sharing it, follow these steps:

1. Enter the promotion “Editor”.

hashtags_7.jpg

 

2. Configure the texts and images of each page of the promotion:


hashtags_8.jpg

A) Welcome

  • Change the provisional title for one that allows identify the strong points of your promotion. It’s a good idea to make this descriptive text as attractive as possible to users.
  • Configure the texts for the page and upload an image to give it more dynamism.
  • In the description, change the provisional text to personalize and explain your own contest mechanism so that participants are clear about what steps they should follow to take part in the contest. You can also customize the ‘Enter’ and ‘View entries’ buttons.

Note: If you also want to enable participation via Facebook or microsite, go to Pages > Form and enable the section. Then, in the "Form fields" tab, review the data that you want to request from the users that are registered.

Hashtag_Contest_5.jpg 

B) Entry form.

On the "Form" page, the application is preconfigured to present in the gallery tweets with images and texts and Instagram posts with images:

  • If your contest is only for tweets without images, delete the "Media field".
  • If your contest is only on Instagram and you are not interested in importing or submitting the comment text in the gallery, delete the "comments field".
  • If you also want to import the videos, you must modify the "Media field" by clicking on the "Media type" option to also collect the videos.
  • If you only want to import tweets and posts with videos, you must modify the option in "Media type".

Attention! This configuration should be coordinated with the type of tweets and posts you have configured in Integrations > Twitter and Integrations > Instagram, so that all content is presented optimally in the gallery.

C) Set up the "Gallery" page,

Which is the public gallery where all the entries are displayed. In this section you should focus on the following option tabs:

Hashtag_Contest_6.jpg

 

1. Contents: From here you can upload a header image to give the gallery a more corporate touch and add an introduction message (option only available with the Premium design template).

2. Layout: In a Hashtags Contest the mosaic gallery is activated by default. This gallery allows to present more than one photo in the same line, making a collage visually attractive.

In this section you will find the following configuration options

You can also activate the promotion footer and customize its texts. The promotion footer is a banner displayed at the bottom of each of the screens that make up the promotion. When this footer is clicked on, it opens the “My Networks” module. Find more information here. 

 

Step 4. Customize the design (optional)

In the Design menu you can customize the look & feel of your promotion completely to adapt it to your brand or product.

Note: The Design module is not included by default in the promotions created in Basic version. You can add a color extension for $10USD.

In this way, for Premium and White Label promotions, and the Basic promotions that have the extension enabled, the section "Design" will give the following options:

  • Colors: Change the colors of the texts and the action elements of the promotion.
  • Typographies: Select the font used for texts and action buttons of the promotion.
  • Buttons: Set the style of the promotion buttons (outlined or solid).
  • Container (only Premium template): Completely customize the container by setting the style, opacity, height or position.
  • Background: Customize the background of the promotion with an own image or a color. The background will be the same for the different pages of the promotion.
  • Template: Decide which design template you want to use to customize the promotion: the Basic design template, or the Premium design template.
  • CSS Styles (only White Label): Use your own CSS styles to completely customize the template.

 

2_design.jpg

Note: Discover all the graphic possibilities offered by the module "Design".

 

Step 5. Customize the viral content (optional)

If your contest also offers users the chance to visit the gallery and share or vote for participations, it’s very important to set up this section so that you can generate a high level of virality. The viral content is the message displayed when the participant shares the promotion with friends, inviting them to vote or participate.

To customize the viral content of the promotion go to Editor > General > Share:

Hashtag_Contest_9.png

A) Generic.

Set up the generic contents of the promotion here:

  • Viral image: This is the image that will accompany the text to be shared. To make it optimal for the social networks, we suggest a measurement of 1200px wide by 630px high. This same image will be shared via Facebook, Pinterest and Google+. If you don’t upload a specific image for this section, the main promotion image will be disseminated when a participant shares the promotion.
  • Generic content: This is the viral text that will be disseminated across the social networks when the participant shares the promotion via the share button on the main page, the registration form or the header of the participations gallery. Learn how to configure this.

B) Participation.

This viral message will be shared by default when the participant share the promotion via the share buttons of the thank you page.
 

 

Step 6. Activate voting in the gallery

If you’d like to dynamize your gallery by allowing users to vote for participations, you’ll need to adjust the settings by going to Editor > Pages > Gallery > Votes.


By default, Hashtag Contests come with voting system disabled. In this section you can enable it if you wish, as well as configure how you want the voting to work. Check here how the voting system works and all the configuration options:

Hashtag_Contest_7.png

Note: Check how the voting system works and all its settings.

 

Step 7. Insert the terms and conditions

In “Editor” you can also find the section for presenting the terms and conditions of the contest. Even if you are not planning to make the hashtags gallery public, you should fill in the corresponding section of the “Editor” to obtain a URL of the terms and conditions. You can then cut and paste this URL and share it via Instagram and Twitter, ensuring that everyone has access to your terms and conditions. 

To add the terms and conditions, go to the Editor> General> Legal content, where you will find the following sections:

Hashtag_Contest_10.png

These terms and conditions will also be displayed on the promotion’s welcome page and via links in the gallery.

  

Step 8. Configure the My Networks module and the promotion footer

The 'My networks' module enables you to totally customize the page that is presented to the user before they finalize the registration. This means you can give them the option to click ‘Like’ on your Facebook Page. The My Networks module can be customized with Facebook pages, as well as with Twitter, Instagram and Youtube accounts. Learn how to do this here.

To customize the My Networks module go to Editor > General > My Networks:

Hashtag_Contest_11.png

You can also customize the text at the foot of the promotion, or deactivate this if it doesn’t interest you. This is a banner, presented at the foot of each page of the promotion.

To enable the Footer of the promotion go to Editor > General > Footer > Contents where you will find the field "Powered by" that will allow you to customize the name of the brand or company that organizes the promotion:

 

contents.jpg

And in Options you can configure the following options:

 

options.png

Step 9. Restrictions to access the promotion

The application allows you to restrict the access to the promotion to limit users who can participate in it. Specifically, the platform offers you 2 forms of restriction:

11.jpg

Note: The functionality to restrict the promotion by age is only available for promotions created with the Premium version and the White Label version that have been designed with the Premium design template.

12.jpg

 

Step 10. Publish the winners page (optional)

Before publishing the promotion or during the course of the it, you have the possibility to show publically the prizes that you are going to give away in your promotion, and at the same time it will show the winners of each prize when there are winners. You can decide if you want to publish the prizes page from the beginning of the promotion or you can publish it when you have the winners. To customize and publish the winners page go to Editor > Pages > Winners.

Check the Prize management tutorial in this link to learn about all the available options regarding prizes.

 

Step 11. Activate the promotion

Once you’ve set up all aspects of the promotion you can pay for and activate it from the Promotion Management Page.

4_activate.jpg

The application will then immediately start to register and import all hashtags published after the “Registration start date.”

 

Step 12. Publish the hashtag gallery (optional)

The next step, if you choose to take it, is to publish the hashtag gallery. You can do this in the following ways:

1. Embed the gallery in a webpage

Using the Easypromos Widgets feature you can embed the hashtag gallery directly into your webpage, microsite or blog. The Widget provides a variety of customization options. For example, you can set up the width and height of the gallery in order to adapt it perfectly to the space available on your website.

View this example of a gallery displaying photos, texts and videos tagged with the hashtag #lovetravel.

2. Display the gallery as a Facebook application

By default, the gallery is published in a tab that you can install in your Facebook Page. This will enable you to provide visibility to your hashtags gallery in Facebook.

3. Share the direct link to the gallery

You can use the direct link to the hashtag gallery to share it via your usual communication channels – Facebook, Twitter, newsletters, etc. The direct link to the gallery can be obtained from the “Links to the promotion” section  as we explain here.

Note: Learn here how to set up the Full Screen Gallery.

 

Step 13. Disseminate the promotion

It’s also important to disseminate the promotion on different channels. Always use the main link to the promotion as it’s the only one compatible with all types of devices.


You can share the promotion via the following methods:

  • With the direct link to the promotion.
  • With the ‘share’ button on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
  • Making your promotion a Featured promotion. This option implies placing your campaign in the section of Easypromos highlighted promotions. This has an additional cost to the price of activating the campaign, and this price is per day of the campaign. If you’d like to create a highlighted campaign, consult this tutorial.


We also recommend these articles:

 

Step 14. Manage the promotion while it's active

While the promotion is active you can monitor and manage the entries from the management page by clicking on the "Participants" section in the menu on the left side. You can also access the entries list form the “Statistics”:

5_participants.jpg

From here you can:

Note: Instagram and Twitter photos and videos are not hosted in Easypromos, therefore they are not included in the ZIP file that you can download. Only images and videos uploaded directly from the registration form can be downloaded. Information about participants will be available even when the promotion has finished.

 

Step 15. Access the statistics

Access the “Statistics” section to view the evolution of participants and their interaction with the application. Keep in mind that users who participate in the promotion via hashtag do not visit or register for the promotion first, so we won’t have any data on them.

6_statistics.jpg

This information will be available even after the promotion has finished. Learn more about the information you have access to in this section.

 

Step 16. Manage prizes and publication of winners

When the participation period of the promotion ends, as the administrator of the promotion you have the prize management system available that allows you to create the prizes of the promotion and configure how they will be assigned. When the promotion has finished, you can assign prizes randomly or manually.

  • Randomly: You can run one or more sweepstakes among all of the participants or among a segment of participants and obtain a certificate of validity with the results of the sweepstakes.
  • Manually: You can assign one or more prizes manually to the participants in the contest. This is useful for example in contests with voting, skills test or where the winners are selected by a jury or a notary public, or manually by the organizing brand.

Learn how to create prizes and select winners in the Prize management tutorial.

You can begin your winner selection process from the “Winners” menu as you can see in the following screenshot:

7_winners.jpg

 

Step 17. End of the promotion

The end of a promotion is controlled through the dates set up in the promotion Editor, so when the "End of publication date" is passed, the promotion changes from active status to expired status and, by default, the promotion is unpublished and is no longer visible, and in this case, a screen with the message "promotion expired" is displayed.

As administrator of the contest you have the possibility to edit the content of this "promotion expired" screen, or even republish the promotion so that it is visible again, for example, if you want to show the winners of the promotion or keep the contest gallery visible.

In this link we explain all the options you have available once the promotion is finished.

Have more questions? Submit a request

0 Comments

Please sign in to leave a comment.