Following the Rules Means Running a Better Facebook Contest

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While the effectiveness of paid Facebook advertisements seems to be on the decline, our Los Angeles social media agency has noticed that there is still big potential in free promotional opportunities on Facebook. One example of such an opportunity is a contest. Running a Facebook contest is something that can be done right on your brand’s Facebook page, so it is a simple process with no formal registration or sign-up to worry about.

Just how effective are Facebook contests? According to, 30% of Facebook users have participated in a contest on Facebook; other social media agency blogs have actually estimated the number to be closer to 80%. Either way, the numbers point to the ongoing popularity of Facebook contests among regular users.

Holding these promotions can mean building brand recognition, community and your customer base. Haven’t we all grown loyal to brand pages that hold great contests? Your audience can grow more loyal to you if you have regular weekly, monthly or seasonal Facebook contests, with tangible incentives that offer them free products and services.

But there are standards to follow when it comes to running a Facebook promotion. Facebook is loaded with rules, and promotional guidelines for brand pages are no exception. On the official Terms page for Facebook Pages, there are numerous rules listed for contests, promotions and sweepstakes. For example, it states that promotions on Facebook must include the following:

  • A complete release of Facebook by each entrant or participant
  • Acknowledgment that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook
  • Disclosure that the participant is providing information to [disclose recipient(s) of information] and not toFacebook

Then, it specifies that entry into any contest on Facebook may only utilize the following Facebook functions: liking a page, checking into a Place, or connecting to your app. “For example, you must not condition registration or entry upon the user liking a Wall post, or commenting or uploading a photo on a Wall,” the rules state.

For anyone who has ever entered a contest that required them to “Like, Comment and Share,” that last condition may come as a surprise. But even though some brands get away with running their contests in violation of the rules, you should not take a chance with yours. Facebook explicitly states that it reserves the right to delete any contest that violates its rules, and you don’t want to run the risk of yours being red flagged. It’s easy to believe that no one will report you, but you never know: One of your competitors just might.

At our Los Angeles social media agency, we make sure our clients hold Facebook contests that are consistent with all official rules and guidelines. For them, it’s easy: They tell us their idea, and we tell them how we can make it happen while staying in compliance with Facebook terms. This is another advantage that trusting an experienced social media agency to do your Facebook marketing provides.


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