Facebook Contests - Staying Legit

April 18, 2013

Online contests and sweepstakes are a great way to increase awareness and traffic to your Facebook page, but did you know that your page can be shut down for running contests that don’t adhere to the Facebook Terms and Conditions? Yep. According to their guidelines, you can promote a sweepstakes or contest on Facebook, but the only way you can run one on Facebook is through an application. That means that people cannot enter using the most common Facebook actions. 

Not every business that runs a contest or sweepstakes on Facebook will immediately have their fan page shut down, but it does happen. Ignoring a provider’s terms and conditions is never a best business practice, and that deserves the attention of every business.

Here are some examples of sweepstakes and contest offers that are not within the Facebook guidelines:

·         “Like our Facebook page and you’re automatically entered in our draw to win a…”

·         “When we reach 1000 “Likes” everyone will be automatically entered to win a …”

·         “Post your idea about … on our wall… and you’re automatically entered in our draw…”

·         “Share your photo on our wall, the one with the most likes by… wins a…”

·         “The 5th person to comment on our post will win a …”

How do you generate new Facebook fans and run a contest using social media? Your online contest or sweepstakes should be run on a separate platform and include complete contest rules. It should have a custom designed contest page that is separate from your Facebook page, show consistency with your branding, and link to a specific URL so you can track your results. Our clients have had fantastic results running legitimate Facebook contests with a variety of interactions including photo contests, caption contests, tug-o-war, or simple click to enter sweepstakes.

Here’s an online photo contest we designed and set up for the Comox Real Estate Team. Or, if you prefer an online sweepstakes, here’s what we've set up for the Courtenay Rotary on their Facebook page.

Better Mousetrap Marketing can put together an effective and legitimate online contest. Need an idea for a unique contest? We can help! Call Better Mousetrap for a consultation about online contests and sweepstakes.



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