Taming Your #Sweeps with Instagram Promotion Guidelines
Once upon a time, Instagram had no formal promotion guidelines. And it was like the wild, wild west in promotion land, just like on Pinterest and Facebook and Twitter a few years ago before there were rules. Brands did whatever they wanted. Hashtags were untamed and unfiltered, and people wildly tagged anyone and everyone in their posts for fun.
Until the law came to town to clean Instagram up.
Instagram quietly formalized their promotion guidelines. Here is what you need to know before you run a sweeps or contest on the Instagram platform.
- You Are Deputized: If your brand runs an Instagram promotion, your brand is responsible for the lawful operation of that promotion. This means you must have legal, official rules and abide by all laws in the states and countries where your promotion is run.
- Brand Only Your Own Cattle: Don’t encourage tagging of people or your brand for an entry in a Sweeps or Contest if they aren’t actually in a photo. If you make this a requirement for entry your brand could run into trouble with Instagram.
- You Are On Your Own: Instagram isn’t going to help you, and you run the promotion at your own risk.
And keep in mind: as part of the Instagram community guidelines: You can’t share other people’s photos. This means no entries for sharing someone else’s photo! Do this and you get kicked by a horse – or at least you could find yourself kicked off of Instagram.
Sound a little scary? It can be, but we can help. Contact us for how to run a legal, hassle-free promotion on Instagram that would make Marshall Dillon proud.
Update June 2016: Instagram limited their data feed access as of June 1, 2016. This makes searching and pulling hashtag entries more challenging. If you want to run an Instagram promo you should read about the recent Instagram changes here.
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