Facebook is always changing up their TOS and this, my friends…. THIS is absolutely aggravating at times. Having to read up on the rules each time I launch a new contest is rather tedious, but very much worth the extra time as you never know if someone will report your contest or if Facebook will notice that you are not running the contest within their TOS.
Here are a few tips to help you run a legit contest on Facebook.
Make sure you are using an approved 3rd party app or that your app has been approved by Facebook before beginning.
ALL contests must be run this way. You may not run your own contest on your Facebook wall encouraging people to submit an image, like or share a photo, answer a question or suggest your page to anyone. These are ALL strategies that go against Facebooks TOS and could get not only your contest shut down, but also your page.
-> Following the rules is the best way to go <-
Bookmark and read up on their terms of service as they could change at any given moment.
It seems SO simple to simply have fans upload their picture or whatever it might be to your fanpage wall and have them accumulate likes in order to win, but this is completely against their TOS. Always use an approved third party app. If you have less than 500 fans at contest launch I would suggest using OfferPOP or Woobox – there are free and reasonably priced plans.
Attract new eyeballs to your contest (and fanpage) by running an ad through Facebook. Be sure to have the ad link to the contest landing tab.
Using Events To Promote Contests/ Sweepstakes
Create a Facebook event and invite friends that you think would be interested in the contest. Be sure to encourage, but not demand sharing with their following and connections.
Blog About Your Contest
Use your blog and website to promote the contest – social sharing of your blog is also encouraged.
Using Other Platforms
Twitter, LinkedIn, DailyBooth, YouTube, Plurk etc…. These are all great ways to also promote your contest.
Email Your Network About Your Contest
Do an email blast. Make the email is specifically about what they can win and how to enter. Don’t use the blast to promote your services. Get them to like your page where all of your business promotions and content happen.
Bonus Facebook Contest Tip
It may seem like second nature to give away some of your company’s services or products, but unless these are in high demand and well known you might want to take a different approach. Try giving away Amazon gift cards or if it’s local something to or from a well known local restaurant or store or give away a product that you know anyone would die to have (ipads, iphones and/ or anything tech related). When you send the winner their gift you can also send that complimentary service or product as a bonus so they’re pleasantly surprised when they get their package.
Avoid These Contest Strategies on Facebook
- Making people like a page, post or image to be entered in your contest.
- Making people upload an image to your fanpage wall to be entered in your contest.
- Making people comment on your wall, a post or an image to be entered into your contest.
Making people do ANYTHING on your actual Facebook wall is strictly against their TOS meaning your Fanpage could be shut down for doing any of the above. Save yourself a potentially ridiculous scenario and play by the rules. I’ve seen Facebook yank pages for even the smallest of contests and if you think that because you don’t have thousands of connections, you’re not on their radar, think again.
Do you run contests often? What tips or advice would you give?