My Thoughts on Giveaways in the Influencer World

Whether you’re an influencer, or you follow a bunch of them, you probably have gotten a glimpse of the world of giveaways.

“Hey guys. I’m teaming up with X number of girls to giveaway this really awesome insert cash prize or item

I know. We’ve all heard those words on Instagram Stories or read them in a caption. I think giveaways have been around for YEARS. I’m talking about since 2014/2015. Probably before that too. But that was the first time I ever did my first loop giveaway.

So yes. I’ve been there. And I feel like I have a lot to say about them. *CLEARS THROAT*

types of giveaways

Over the years, influencers have gotten CREATIVE AF when it comes to giveaways. When I first started hearing about giveaways it was mainly a loop giveaway.

A loop giveaway is when bloggers would post an in-feed image, tagging the person that participants would need to go their profile next to follow. If the participant followed all of the bloggers, they would be entered to win. It was pretty simple. The giveaway I entered I think had 10 girls…and I can’t even remember what we gave away. Probably a blanket scarf and Starbucks gift card LOL.

Fast forward to 2020, and giveaways are actually OUTRAGEOUS. Here are just a few examples of the  kinds of giveaways there are nowadays:

  • Ghost Giveaway: A giveaway that you don’t even have to post on your feed. You pay $$$$ to enter, and people are required to follow you. Usually there’s a separate page like “Bloggerzdoingagiveaway” or something weird like that.
  • Celebrity/Big Influencer Giveaway: You’ve all seen the Kardashians post “Enter to win 2138092108 Chanel bags!!! Just head to X handle and follow everyone there”. I’ve gotten so many emails asking to participate in these kinds of giveaways and they’re actually COMICAL. I’m talking about THOUSANDS of dollars to participate. I’ve seen a lot of brands participate in these giveaways because it’s basically like an AD without paying an influencer or celebrity’s actual fee.
  • Brand Giveaway: An influencer will team up with a brand to giveaway a specific product. This helps the brand gain more followers from a demographic they’re looking for. In turn, the influencer typically gets paid and/or gets product from the brand as well.
  • Niche Giveaway: Influencers with similar style, content, following will team up to giveaway something: A hat, a cash prize, Starbucks gift cards, etc.
  • 1-Person Giveaway: An influencer will do a giveaway on their own as a way of saying thank you to their followers
ghost giveaway & celebrity giveaways

Ever wonder how an influencer grew 10,000 followers overnight? It’s 99.9% because they’re participating in a loop giveaway.

I’ll just get right to it: I despise these types of giveaways. Why? Well, two reasons:

  • Because these influencers are literally buying followers; and a lot of them do it because of the instant success. But I ain’t buying into that.
  • The giveaways just seem shady in itself. I mean 13829038 Chanel bags? A car? 6 Pelotons? Something just never adds up to me.

These giveaways are SO expensive. And nothing is guaranteed. They’ll give you an “expected” amount of followers, but you just never know. You also have no idea what demographic these accounts will fall under. AND on top of that, these people don’t actually want to follow you. They just want to win a weird giveaway. Isn’t the purpose of being an influencer to actually influence and foster a community? ANYWAY…moving on.

brand giveaways

I’ve done a couple of brand giveaways over my time on Instagram. I love teaming up with brands that I actually LOVE. A recent one was with Pineapple & Star…the maker of my GO-TO Spring & Summer hat! I’ve been talking about the brand for a year or so when they reached out to us to partner on a giveaway. It was not only successful, but also 3 people got to win my favorite hat ever!!!

I think brand giveaways are smart for influencers when done the right way. Here are some tips and thoughts:

  • Only partner with brands you know and love (this goes for any kind of partnership)
  • Sharing a brand organically can lead to these types of partnerships
  • Great for a brand you love because your followers will have to follow the brand’s handle in order to win — therefore exposing them to the brand’s own content
niche giveaway

These are probably the most wildly popular (ok that’s actually a lie, I think ghost giveaways are ALIVE AND (UN)WELL). I do enjoy when I see influencers working together for style hauls, decor hauls, or something else fun and themed! I’ve done a couple of these giveaways (blue light glasses, a gift card, etc.). I think it’s a nice way to get followers from other accounts that truly are like yours. I feel like these are the types of followers you do want to follow your page. I think when done with other influencers within your niche, this is the best way to organically grow your following and convert them into loyal followers.

your own giveaway

I know there are a few influencers who do monthly giveaways completely on their own as a way of showing appreciation for their followers. And I LOVE THAT! I recently did a giveaway of a Lou & Grey set for National Coffee Day. I know how much my followers love Lou & Grey, so I wanted to give back to them somehow. I think this is just a nice gesture for the people who are constantly engaging with you. We all know influencers would be nothing if they didn’t have supportive communities.

If you have your current followers tag a friend, that friend might not follow you –so it’s a good way to also gain some followers while doing something nice for your community!

At the end of the day, I think there are many pros and cons to giveaways. If you’re new to this world, I definitely suggest doing your research. 8 times out of 10, the giveaway is probably not worth your integrity OR your money. I do recommend partnering with accounts and brands that you genuinely love. That you genuinely think would also benefit from doing a giveaway. You should ALWAYS have your audience in mind.

photos by allie provost

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. 11.16.20
    Dani said:

    This is so good ?? ?? I roll my eyes so hard at the insane giveaways and the people that fall for them. They’re everywhere, so I guess it’s working? Keeping doing what you do! It’s real and authentic, what else can we ask for?

    • 11.16.20

      APPRECIATE THAT! It’s hard to wrap my head around them because yes, people CONTINUE to do them…but like…COME ON!

  2. 11.16.20
    Laura Leigh said:

    SUCH A GREAT POST on the topic! super informative for those new to the blogging world or those that follow bloggers. the celebrity/massive blogger giveaways are bananas and so are the ghost giveaways you mentioned – the price some girls pay for those absolutely blow me away! like whoa! agree the niche giveaways and your own personal giveaways can be great when done correctly. again awesome post gal!

    xo Laura Leigh

    • 11.16.20

      THANK YOU!!!
      The ones that are legit like $20k, I’m like EXXXXXXXXXXXXXCUSE ME?! It doesn’t even make sense. I think people should stick to cute little niche giveaways too!

  3. 11.16.20
    Alissa said:

    I don’t mind when a blogger teams up with a local business or something like that when it a good fit. OH MYG GOD BUT THE PEOPLE WITH THE AMAZONG GIVEAWAYS EVERY TWO DAYS!