Running a Facebook competition: what you need to know

So you’ve got a Facebook page for your business, and you’ve got a few loyal fans already. Nice! But how can you boost Facebook fans in your area? One of the easiest low-cost methods is to run a Facebook competition.

First, set a goal. What do you want to achieve? Do you want more fans? Or is your aim to broaden awareness of your brand? Maybe you want to let people know about a new product you’re offering. A specific goal is the best way to start when planning a Facebook competition, as it helps keep you focused and able to measure success.

What can you offer as an incentive? You want to choose something as a prize that makes it worthwhile for a person to take the time to enter your Facebook competition. For instance, the prize needs to appeal to a broad audience, so maybe instead of a specific product that a fan may already own, think about a gift voucher so they can purchase something else from your business. Gift vouchers are also better than a service on a specific day, for example, offer a prize that can be redeemed for a period of six months, rather than a specific date. Also, keep the prize relevant to your business, and if possible, let it be a showcase for your product or service. For example, if you’re a restaurant, there’s no point giving away a voucher for a massage, as this doesn’t encourage customers to check out what you’re offering, nor does it attract fans who are interested in your business – which is the end goal for most Facebook competitions.

Get familiar with the official Facebook guidelines for competitions. There are a few basic rules to abide by when setting up a Facebook competition for your brand page, and it’s worth checking the list before you post, or risk Facebook suspending the post.

Make it easy to enter! Don’t ask people to do anything too difficult, or you’ll find you won’t attract many entries. Asking people to post a selfie is a lot less intimidating than asking them to create an essay or a video. You want maximum entries, so keep it simple.

Make sure there’s plenty of lead time before a competition closes. Allow at least two weeks for people to enter the Facebook competition. This gives your content plenty of time to be shared organically, and for people to prepare their entry.

Be clear on the rules. This is so important to remember. You want to run a fair competition for everyone, so be totally transparent.

Use other platforms to advertise your Facebook competition. Put up posters in your store, send a few tweets, let people know on Instagram (and include a link to the competition in your bio), send a link in an email newsetter, and remind customers when you see them; this will help you reach more people.

Award your prize to the winner and follow up with the unsuccessful entrants. It’s so important to follow up with the people who entered. Maybe you can offer a discount code to all competition entrants as a thank you? They have proved by entering the competition that they are interested in what your business offers, so treat them as prospective buyers and gently encourage them to buy from you.

Assess and reassess. What did you learn from the Facebook competition process? Is there something you’d do differently next time? Use these learnings in the future, and hone your understanding of your audience.

Would you like advice from us on running a Facebook competition for your business? Get in touch and we can tailor these suggestions for your company.