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How To Pick a Winner For a Giveaway on Instagram

Holding a giveaway on your Instagram feed can help you boost engagement. But how do you select a winner in a way that’s fair to everyone and easy for you? Find out how to pick a winner on Instagram.
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Have you ever held a giveaway for a product or service on your Instagram account? 

If so, then you already know that giveaways are both fun and frustrating. 

On the plus side, it’s great fun to see how many comments you get from users who enter the contest, and how your overall engagement gets a major boost

But on the negative side, it’s frustrating to try to pick a winner. Nearly every method of picking a single comment to win the giveaway prize is time-consuming and tedious for the host or unfair to all the losers.

In our opinion, however, Instagram giveaways should only be fun! So, to help make choosing a winner for your giveaways easier, we’re going to explore a few different methods of making your selection. A couple of them you may have already tried before, but there’s one in particular that we promise will make your life easier.

How To Pick a Winner on Instagram? (3 Different Methods)

Let’s dig into the three methods of picking a winner of a giveaway on Instagram.

1. List All the Usernames Who Entered the Giveaway and Randomly Select a Winner

First, we want to cover the most obvious – and most tedious – method of picking a winner. 

It’s relatively simple, actually. All you need to do is make a list of all the usernames who commented on your Instagram giveaway posts. Then, you can randomly pick an entrant from the list. 

Here’s the problem, though. If you’re marketing the contest correctly, then you’ve accumulated quite a few comments on your giveaway post – perhaps even hundreds of them. To be completely fair to every person who commented, you must include every last one of them on your list.

Making the list typically involves either typing the names in a spreadsheet or writing them all down by hand. No matter which way you go, though, it’s going to take a long time. 

Then there’s the question of how to randomly choose a winner. Do you close your eyes, press the down key in your spreadsheet, count to five, and then see whose name is highlighted? Do you put all the names on pieces of paper, throw them in a hat, and then draw one? 

There’s no easy answer. So, this first method – while technically fair, if you’re thorough – is far from convenient or ideal for you, the host.

2. Pick One of the First Usernames You See to Be the Winner

Next, we have a fast method of choosing a giveaway winner, but this one isn’t exactly fair. It requires looking at your Instagram giveaway posts and picking out one of the first usernames you see to be the winner. 

Clearly, this isn’t a right or fair way of finding a winner. The bottom line is whoever happened to leave a comment first is the one who wins. You’re not giving anyone else in your comment sections a chance to snag the prize.

What’s left, then? Hold on to your hats because we still haven’t checked out method number three yet.

3. Use an Instagram Giveaway Picker To Randomly Find a Winner

Use an Instagram Giveaway Picker To Randomly Find a Winner

What if you could pick out the winner for your Instagram giveaway in a way that’s easy for you and still fair to your fans? You can certainly do it that way if you use an Instagram giveaway picker

An Instagram giveaway picker is a free online tool (no download required) that randomly selects a winner from all the comments on your giveaway post. The only information you need to provide is the giveaway post’s URL. 

But what if there are certain comments that aren’t eligible for winning the giveaway? Maybe you requested that people who wanted to enter your giveaway comment with a certain word or emoji.

In that case, the picker tool has you covered. Just filter for the words or emojis that are eligible, and the picker will choose a winner at random from that pool.

Another advantage of using an Instagram giveaway picker is you can record or screenshot it and share it with your followers. That way, they’ll know that the winner was chosen with complete impartiality. It’s a win-win for everyone!

Verdict: Which Method of Picking an Instagram Giveaway Winner is Best?

When all is said and done, using a free Instagram giveaway picker is by far the superior way to find a winner for your contest.

To recap, here are the advantages of using an Instagram giveaway picker tool.

  • Is free to use
  • Only requires the URL to your Instagram giveaway post
  • Selects a winner at random (the fairest way)
  • Allows you to filter for eligible comments
  • No download necessary
  • Allows you to be transparent with your followers about the winner selection

Frequently Asked Questions

Is There a Free Tool to Help Pick Instagram Winners?

Yes, Viralyft has a free tool that helps influencers, brands, and entrepreneurs pick out winners for their Instagram giveaways.

Do I Have To Provide Any Information To Use An Instagram Giveaway Picker?

The only information you have to provide to use Viralyft’s Instagram Giveaway Picker is the URL to your Instagram giveaway post.


Don’t put a lot of extra work on yourself or cheat your followers out of getting a real chance at winning a giveaway prize. Use our Instagram Giveaway Picker Tool to choose a contest winner randomly and quickly from the comments on your post.

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