Do you run contests and giveaways on your Facebook Page? Many direct sellers do. And you may be surprised to know that the majority of them are in direct violation of Facebook’s promotions guidelines. In fact, Facebook could shut your Page down due to your contest.
Facebook’s Promotions guidelines basically state that you can’t use any Facebook feature to promote your contest. It MUST be administered through a 3rd party application. This means your contest/giveaway is in violation if you:
- Require them to “Like” your Page to enter
- Require them to comment to enter
- Have them participate in any Facebook function to enter, including polls, clicking the Like button, questions, etc.
You can read all the Facebook Promotional Guidelines here: http://www.facebook.com/promotions_guidelines.php
So does this mean you can’t run Facebook promotions? No. But it does mean you have to run them in a specific way that’s going to cost you money.
The easiest (and as far as I know, cheapest) way to run a promotion on Facebook is through Wildfire App. This very simple service allows you to set up a campaign that is in compliance with Facebook’s rules. In fact, many of your companies use this same service to run corporate-level campaigns. It is simple and inexpensive. The reason Wildfire complies is because the contest is administered through an application (Wildfire) and not Facebook functionality.
UPDATE 3/25/13: These days my favorite no-cost way to admin a contest is through a blog and Rafflecopter. You can talk about your contest on Facebook, but the actual administration of that contest happens on your blog. Thus, you stay within Facebook’s rules.
If you’ve been running contests or giveaways through Facebook without using a 3rd party app, I advise you to stop immediately. This behavior could cause you to lose everything you’ve worked for on your Facebook Page.
If the contest is important to you, fork over the bucks and use Wildfire. And in the meantime, read these articles to find more ways to drive traffic to, and engage, your Facebook Page community, in ways that don’t involve contests:
- 10 Ways to Get Traffic to Your Facebook Page
- Why Your Facebook Page Isn’t Growing
- Getting Your Posts Seen on Facebook
- 7 Essential Steps for Writing Engaging Facebook Page Updates
- How to Build Your Direct Sales Facebook Page Community