What Is a Giveaway?

A giveaway is a free gift offered by a company to its customers or prospective customers as an incentive and reward for engaging in its marketing campaigns. These prizes could take the form of cash gifts, free products, or services.

Giveaways are often part of a company’s marketing strategy to engage customers and boost awareness of its products or services. This, in turn, generates leads and drives sales for the brand.

While giveaways vary in size and value, the core idea remains consistent – capturing customers’ attention by promising the chance to win something valuable.

Although businesses implement giveaways in diverse formats, they generally fall into two primary categories:

  • Contests: These giveaways reward the most engaged customers with the specified item or service the brand offers.
  • Sweepstakes: In this type of giveaway, winners are chosen randomly by the brand.

Understanding these categories is extremely important for businesses in the United States to avoid legal liabilities related to illegal gambling or lotteries.

Usually, giveaways are broken into simple micro-tasks that can be done within a few minutes. For instance, social media giveaways often require users to:

  • Like a post, follow tagged accounts.
  • Tag a number of known friends or those in the participant’s circle of influence.
  • Subscribe/follow the business’ social media handle.

Why Are Giveaways Important?

Running smart giveaways offers many other benefits aside from simply grabbing the interest of prospective customers. These include:

  • Higher Conversion Rates

Even when you have the attention of your target audience capturing sales can be tough, especially in a saturated market. Giveaways can be the x-factor that gets prospective customers to buy your product or service over your competitor’s.

  • Acquire New Followers Faster

Social media giveaways are a popular method of attracting new followers and engagement as well as driving interest and sales. A survey by Tailwind revealed that Instagram giveaways enabled brands to acquire up to 70% more new followers than regular posts.

The more followers you have on social media, the greater your reach is. A large community is also helpful for solidifying your brand as popular and trustworthy.

  • Driving Customer Loyalty

When a business gives back to its loyal customers, it forges a lasting connection. Giveaway winners, especially those who win large prizes, often instantly become lifetime customers and champions of your brand. Even entrants who don’t win will usually remember your giveaway and brand longer than a regular ad.

  • Cost-Effective Marketing

It seems Giveaways are cheaper to run. They allow brands to capitalize on viral word-of-mouth marketing in collaboration with their customer base. When executed properly, they save companies lots on ad budgets as the customer is responsible for creating awareness of the brand to others.

Giveaways Examples

Now that you better understand the various benefits of running giveaways, it’s time to look through a few examples of successful campaigns and the reasons why they were successful.

  1. Dollar Shave Club shows off how to run a successful yet simple sweepstakes by showing a large swath of interesting products that you could win paired with a fun caption and an extremely easy way to enter.

2. Omaze, a for-profit fundraiser for various charities that runs massive sweepstakes for valuable cars and even houses, draws more interest to its giveaways than anyone else. Omaze has raised over $170 million by offering a chance to win one extremely valuable and enticing product (per giveaway) with a low donation requirement for entry.

3. Autonomous provided a great example of a smart giveaway on X (formerly Twitter), giving away a cash prize to entrants whose referrals spend the most money on their site. This is particularly smart for Autonomous as it only offers relatively expensive items like ergonomic chairs and smart desks. The largest order from referrals may exceed the value of the giveaway prize alone.