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Thanksgiving contest ideas you can have up and running in a matter of minutes

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by Elena Velikova
November 09, 2017

Elena Velikova
Elena Velikova has written 17 articles for PromotionWorld.
View all articles by Elena Velikova...

Thanksgiving is a special time of year. Time to gather with family and friends, feast on succulent turkey, and voice our appreciation. Also, time for brands to launch Thanksgiving-themed social media promotions. Celebrating this holiday of gratitude with a Thanksgiving giveaway is an awesome way to show your appreciation to clients, customers, and fans.

But why contests?

Well-crafted contests generate buzz around your brand and spread the word organically, and most importantly – virally. The viral effect is what every business is seeking – your users and fans become your brand evangelists and spread your contest among their friends, and their friends take it from there and share it with their friends and so on and so on. With so many competitions on the market, keeping your business top-of-mind during the holidays is your ultimate goal. And running a contest is ideal to make it happen. You can also use the contest to generate email leads and then market your holiday sales for Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas to them.

The most important considerations:

- Choose the type of contest or giveaway which will work best for your business

- Come up with a unique and awesome prize

- Cross-promote your contest on your website, social media and email

- Keep your imaginary consistent to all your marketing channels

What makes a contest a success?

A simple four-step process for guaranteed success:

  1. Make it easy to enter.
  2. Make the prize desirable to your business’ target market.
  3. Increase the believed chance to win by offering many prizes (perhaps split a $500 prize into 10 $50 giveaways)
  4. Put some effort into visuals.

We’ve put together a list of Thanksgiving contest ideas you can have up and running by the end of the day! We even have a graphic for each campaign so you can get it all done in a matter of minutes.

All of these campaigns can be created using DesignPro, so if you’re ready to start building, create your free account first.

Ready to see some creative Thanksgiving marketing ideas?

Thanksgiving Contest Idea #1

Photo Contest

Photo contests are not only a great way to get some user-generated content, but are also one of the best contest types for driving organic traffic and brand awareness (as each person who submits their photo has an incentive to share your contest with their friends and family).

Thanksgiving selfie contest

(Click on the image to edit in DesignPro)


  1. Ensure your contest design is memorable and recognizable.
  2. Publish your contest's rules on your blog and provide a link to it in your emails and social media channels.

Thanksgiving Contest Idea #2

User-generated Contest

People love to share holiday-related stories, recipes and more around this time of year, and a great way to tap into that desire is running a contest asking them to share a recipe or a story:

Thanksgiving day menu restaurant

(Click on the image to edit in DesignPro)

Thanksgiving Contest Idea #3

Hashtag Contest

Hashtag contest is a great idea. You can ask your customers to simply follow your account on Instagram, upload their photo and put your hashtag. Or Retweet you post to have a chance to win a prize.

Thanksgiving hashtag contest

(Click on the image to edit in DesignPro)

Thanksgiving Contest Idea #4

Basket Giveaway

This is yet another viral giveaway idea. By asking your customers to tag a friend, you actually make your contest spread faster.

Thanksgiving basket giveaway

(Click on the image to edit in DesignPro)

Thanksgiving Contest Idea #5

What You’re Thankful For

Ask your fans to share one or two things they’re thankful for this Thanksgiving season. Use the stories you collect to learn more about your audience for future targeted marketing.

Thanksgiving day thankful bird

(Click on the image to edit in DesignPro)

Thanksgiving Contest Idea #6

Thanksgiving Freebie

Free stuff! Running contests for freebies is a great idea to engage audience on social media channels and boost sales.

Thanksgiving day win wine

(Click on the image to edit in DesignPro)


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