Social Media Management: Facebook Competition Dos & Don'ts

People often ask for advice on running competitions on their social media platforms.  While most platforms are pretty relaxed with how their users run these activities, Facebook has some pretty clear rules which they do manage to enforce when it comes to using their Facebook Adverts platform.

A Side Note on Facebook vs Facebook Adverts

It’s important to remember that these are actually two quite separate platforms which are owned by the same business, just as Facebook also owns Instagram.

Therefore, if you Boost a post or use the Promote button to advertise your competition using a post, even though the original content has been created in your Facebook page, by choosing this option you have now given approval to another business (Facebook Adverts) to use this same content for creating your advertising campaign.  For this reason, if you decide you want to edit or change that original post, you actually can’t because it is “locked” by the advert ie. you would need to end or delete the advert to unlock the post and edit the content.

Facebook Page Competition Posts – DON’T DO

Facebook is pretty clear with what is acceptable and what they advise is not acceptable, and like Facebook itself, this is a moving feast and will change again soon probably. For now, the big “No Nos” include:

  • DO NOT ask people to Like or Share your page to be eligible to enter
  • DO NOT ask people to Tag themselves or their friends in a photo to enter
  • DO NOT ask people to Share your post to a friend’s Timeline to enter

Yes, people still do this but they will have difficulties when it comes to using the Facebook Adverts platform as there is an advert review system which all adverts are put through before they are approved for promoting.  And even if you do get approved, you may only be allowed limited visibility if your post is deemed “questionable”.

Facebook Page Competition Posts – DO DO

However, there are lots of other great ways to get extra visibility for your competition including:

  • Using a video clip instead of a photo
  • Make the prize suitable for a couple/friends or a group and ask people to tag in the comments who they want to share the prize with
  • Include a quiz or fun question which people need to answer in the comments

All Roads Lead to Facebook/Instagram

But don’t be limited with just running your competition on your Facebook page.  You can also use your website, eNews and any other social media platforms to direct people to your Facebook post and enter the competition, or you can run your competition consecutively across multiple platforms.

Here’s a few suggestions for directing people to engage with your Facebook page and enter the competition there:

  1. Create your competition post with a video clip or photo
  2. Copy the post URL to use on other platforms
  3. Use your same video clip or photo to create the same content with a ‘Click to Enter Here’ + the FB page post URL and repeat this content on your:
  4. Website Home Page
    • eNews
    • Google My Business page
    • Email Footer
    • Any other digital platforms you use?

The Usual Rules Apply 

Also, don’t forget to include details of your competition where relevant, either in the post or include a link to your website for the full details or Ts & Cs where these are more extensive. Some of the competition details you need to tell people about include:

  • Competition close date
  • What the prize is and the value
  • How the prize is claimed or if you will send them the prize or maybe confirm details by PM
  • How the winner will be selected and/or notified eg. We will choose a winner and let them know by direct message plus announce the winner on our page here.  A good process to follow then is:
    • Reply to their comment on the competition post that they are the winner
    • Direct message the winner to arrange collection or sending the prize
    • Edit the post (if you don’t have an advert locking it) to say the competition has closed and who has won
    • Make a new post announcing the winner and thanking everyone for participating & pin this to the top of your page for 1wk
  • Any other eligibility criteria eg. Minimum age, number of times you can enter, location, proof of purchase, etc.

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