Tips for running effective Facebook competitions

Jan 10th, 2014

Come on, you must have been tempted at some point… “Like our page and share to win a brand new nut roast!” You may be allergic to nuts and swell up at the sight of one but that’s not the point. It’s free and easy to enter

Facebook competitions are an incredibly effective way for businesses to spread the word of their brand and generate new consumer interest in a relatively short space of time.

But aren’t they a legal minefield? Not anymore – Facebook changed its promotions guidelines in the latter stages of 2013 to make it easier than ever for people to create a competition without the fear of getting kicked off the world’s largest social network.

Follow the rules!

The most important tip we can give is to refresh yourself with Facebook’s Pages Terms and get a grip on your legal requirements and responsibilities when running a competition.

Part of those regulations include your responsibility to create an official set of rules, the terms of entering the competition including age and location restrictions, any compliance needed for the prize itself, and more.

Also consider local regulations. Italians for instance need to use an Italian-based server to collect competition entries. We appreciate it can look scary but it’s easy to digest, and once familiar with the rules you’re set to create amazing competitions with confidence.

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Pick the right prizes

We lied before. Nut roasts really aren’t our thing and nothing would ever make us consider entering a nut roast competition.

It begs the question though of what prizes are you going to offer? Carefully consider their valuation before you choose – the higher value the prize the more transparent you need to be when awarding it.

People may not be too fussed if you’re giving away a corkscrew, but what if you’re giving away a holiday worth thousands of pounds?

You can’t be flippant when giving away costly prizes. People care. Make sure that you’re transparent when picking a winner and be as fair, as professional, and as positive as possible to show people that your brand has values above and beyond a competition.

Entry point

Make sure you’re clear on how people can enter your competition; something that you’ll have to consider when appreciating Facebook’s guidelines as mentioned earlier.

Something to be careful of when creating rules for entry though is that the simpler the requirement the more likely it is that some people will spam the competition with duplicate entries, sadly.

Not only is it unfair on the other contestants but it puts a lot more investigative work on your plate. It’s tough to identify disingenuous entries, and you’ll have to do some detective work before deciding on your winner.

That, though, can open up the possibility of some creative contest entries to give your campaign a boost.

Asking people to create something beautiful in Photoshop or submit a photo that means something personal to them can deter cheats who are only looking for the benefits of an easy entry and a free prize.

Create a jury of people to select a winner impartially, or choose a contest app that highlights the IP addresses of fraudulent entrants.

The right competition can generate brilliant long-term benefits for your business and attract a new audience that’s willing to invest in and spread word of your brand.

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