Facebook contests tips, ideas and legal regulations

A popular form of building your reach on Facebook is organizing contests. Do you know how to use this tool effectively? Are you familiar with Facebook’s terms and conditions and relevant laws relating to contests? Do you know the methods of measuring the effects of your activities? If you answered “no” to at least one question, I encourage you to read about our Facebook contests tips.

Why a contest?

The first question to ask yourself is the legitimacy of organizing a contest. The vast majority of games are created without any idea what makes them absolutely worthless for the organizing brand and for potential fans or customers.

What goals can the competition pursue? Contrary to popular opinion, I do not recommend organizing contests to generate reach. It is very difficult to design a good mechanism that will limit the influx of bounty hunters and uninterested people and only sift potential customers. After all, we do not care about the reach as such, but the reach in our target group.

It is a good idea to prepare the contest in such a way as to increase sales. I mean both increasing the overall sale of individual products and the shopping cart. The strong trend of lowering the entry threshold, i.e. making it easier for everyone to take part, is not such a good direction. Sometimes it is worth requiring (e.g. purchase of a product or service) a higher entry threshold, but to achieve tangible benefits from it.

The third purpose of the contests may be research on our clients. Who are they, what are their preferences, what should be improved, how they use the product, etc. As you can guess, goals can be combined.

Regardless of what we care about, it is always worth determining the specific effects that we expect so that we can account for them. I warn you against focusing on inadequate indicators, such as the number of reports, which do not have a direct impact on the company’s financial results. Instead, I recommend specific effects, e.g. increase in sales, answer to the question, or increase in customers.

Facebook contests under the rule of law

Facebook’s regulations have one short point in this regard: the contest must have regulations stating who the contest organizer is and may not use the users’ timeline. In other words, we cannot require posting on private profiles, sharing, tagging on photos, or anything else that may appear on a contestant’s profile, excluding in-app communications.

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Facebook can delete a contest post or even suspend or close the entire fan page for such actions, and this is not as rare as it may seem.

I always encourage you to write the competition regulations, because only in this way we can include a provision that the submitted works can be used by us for brand communication. A secondary goal of the competition should be to generate user content, which we can then publish at will.

Facebook contests tips – what should you bear in mind?

In addition to planning the goal and measuring the effects, it is worth considering various mechanisms of protection against competitors. They are professional contestants who often earn or earn extra money in this way. They are not interested in your business, prevent your actual customers from winning, and are very often demanding.

An example of an absolutely pointless mechanism that exposes us to the harmfulness of contestants is the contest in which the application with the most likes wins. For a contestant, buying a few hundred likes takes several minutes. None of them will be of great importance to our business – they are from artificial accounts or from people who professionally participate in contests.

Consider using the app. Despite the additional costs, increasing the entry threshold, and the complexity of the competition, we may ask students for their consent to receive marketing materials. In this way, we can obtain a database of emails for the newsletter or an interesting group to which we can target Facebook ads.

I also encourage you to always donate prizes related to our company. Random people are always more likely to use a camera or tablet. For a complementary product to a product that has to be bought in the competition, only our customers.

If you want to combine social elements, i.e. the voice of Internet users, but to protect yourself against their jokes, it is worth combining various mechanisms. Remember that on the web, many people are willing to tease others and vote for a joke. The recipe is, for example, the creation of a two-stage system of Internet users’ voting and commission election, although in the light of the possibility of buying votes, I recommend a slightly different solution. To participate, the work must receive a minimum number of votes, e.g. 10 likes, and the committee selects the best of those that meet this condition.

Transparency of our activities is extremely important in the contest. It is very easy to damage your image with accusations of nepotism, dishonesty, or unprofessionalism. And yet this is not the effect we want to achieve.

To sum up this short article about Facebook contests tips, competition can be a very good business tool, and if well planned, it will bring great results for your business. However, it is worth taking a moment to consider its course properly to avoid unpleasant mishaps and wasting potential.

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