Facebook Makes It Easier To Run Contests

facebook's new contest rulesIf you’ve ever tried to run a Facebook contest or promotion, you probably found the process tricky—if not downright arduous. Yet thanks to a new update, Facebook admins no longer have to run contests through apps.

Now, if you want to hold a Facebook contest, you can collect entries directly from your Facebook page by asking users to post on your page, comment on or like a page post or message your page. Plus, you can now use likes as a Facebook voting mechanism—score!

That being said, Facebook still has rules—also known as terms of service—that outline promotional do’s and don’ts. Here’s a look at the updates:

  • Although you can now use a Facebook page to run a contest (or an app, if you prefer), personal timelines can’t be used to administer promotions. You can’t ask people to “share on your timeline to enter” or “share on your friend’s timeline to get additional entries.”
  • Promotions must include acknowledgment that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
  • Pages are now prohibited from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content that they are not actually depicted in. For example, it’s not OK to ask people to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize. Additionally, it’s not OK to ask people to tag themselves in product photos for a chance to win.

The resounding consensus—for now, anyway—is that these changes make it much easier for small businesses to run Facebook contests and promotions without investing in the additional time and money required to create a contest app. If you’re app savvy (or work with someone who is), you can still go that route, if you prefer, but you’re no longer tied exclusively to app-based events.

What’s your take on the news? Will you be planning more Facebook contests and promotions in light of this change?

Image: Crystian Cruz via Compfight cc

  • http://twitter.com/HowieGoldfarb HowieG

    I saw this and thought about what is happening with Facebook. They had a surprising quarter for revenue vaulting the share price to above the IPO. At the same time huge warning signs that all the insiders except for Zuckerberg are dumping their shares like crazy with Sheryl Sandberg being the biggest seller. What do they know that we don’t about the future stock price? It will be lower or why sell?

    Facebook also announced 819 mil mobile users. Really? Prove it. And their mobile revenue seems too rosy since mobile ads perform the worst of any type of advertising. I have clicked on 4 in 3 years myself.

    So now this. Why? Because they have to stem the diversions to other platforms hindering growth. 3rd party apps did nothing for Facebook so get rid of them and allow us to go back to stalking brands to win things. On average we visit a brand page once every 6 days. We visit the average Brand page once per year. So this will amplify participation and bring back the small biz owners who the feed changes have hurt recently.

    This is good for small businesses and probably good for Facebook.

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