Running a facebook competition under facebook guidelines and rules

Facebook relaxed the rules on how you can run a Competition on your Facebook Page at the end of August 2013.

Soooooo many businesses jumped for joy at the thought, no more worrying that your Page would get removed from Facebook for breaching T&C’s not to mention breaking laws in the UK and beyond.

STOP one moment – you may still be not running your competition correctly. Rules still apply, as well as laws!

Running a Competition under Facebook Guidelines

Important to note:

  • A status “like” is allowable as an entry to your competition or giveaway
  • A comment is allowable as an entry to your competition or giveaway
  • Utilize likes as a voting mechanism (This means you can have a photo competition and the number of likes will determine the winner)
  • Asking fans to “share” by means of an entry to their Facebook wall, is not an allowable form of entry
  • You still need to exonerate Facebook from any association to your competition or giveaway
  • You must have Terms and Conditions available to the entrants and a Privacy Policy to hand
  • Here’s a link to the Promotion Guidelines published by Facebook. See section E

You may be wondering “How is this possible? I can’t squeeze all of this into one update!”

Get Your FREE Tick-list at the end of this post!

You have two options:

1. You can create a note on your Facebook Page with the full Terms and Conditions (remember to detail age and country restrictions, prize, timescale, opening and closing dates for entries). Link to the note you have created in your competition update so that it is clear these are the set Terms and Conditions and Rules that apply to your competition or giveaway. Also in your update (and in your T&C’s if you so wish) to include a statement that Facebook has nothing to do with your promotion, along these lines:

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. You are providing your information to [Insert company here] and not to Facebook. By participating in this promotion you agree to a complete release of Facebook from any claims. Participation in this promotion is subject to the official rules.

2. You can create a Blog Post or Page on your website that has your official rules and use this link in your Competition/Giveaway update. (Exactly the same details as above)

Only post one update that has the competition details on, if you require entry by like and commenting this is the easiest way to keep track of those entries.

Administering your competition

Now the fun part, how on earth do you jot down all those names from the likes and comments to pull one out of the hat? Some of the biggest names in Fan Page Apps have created a FREE app that will do it all for you, how awesome is that!! These apps vary in ability, some are live, others are in production. The Woobox app is great for selecting your winner!

Heyo

Tabsite

Woobox

 

This makes it super easy for you to pick your winner and avoid hours of pulling your hair out!

Good Competition, Bad Competition

An example of a “good competition”:

Name of your Company

We’re having a giveaway! Simply comment on this status what you think the name of our new doll should be to win a £50 Amazon voucher! The winner will be chosen at random on Tuesday 24th September 2013. Only comments posted on this status will be counted towards entry and you must be over 18 and a UK resident. Please see the full terms of entry here on our website http://insert-website-url-here.com

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. You are providing your information to [Insert company here] and not to Facebook. By participating in this promotion you agree to a complete release of Facebook from any claims. Participation in this promotion is subject to the official rules.

[Insert compelling image here]

An example of a “bad competition”:

Name of your Company

We’re having a giveaway! Simply comment, like and share this status to be in with a chance of winning a £50 Amazon voucher. Winner will be chosen on Tuesday 24th September. Good Luck!

Notice the lack of information in the “bad” example, no country restrictions, asking to share the status as a form of entry to the competition, no age restrictions, no link to T&C’s and no Facebook release statement.

Just by making sure you follow these simple rules, you can be sure to stay within the Facebook Guidelines. Good Luck with your competitions and giveways!

Now for the bad news…

Use the relaxed guidelines to run a competition or giveaway on your Facebook Page for small giveaways as part of your marketing mix, not as the sole competition/giveaway mechanism that you use consistently. If you really want to grow your Page AND your marketing list you should still use a 3rd Party app to run a competition. It may be OK on occasion to run the odd quick “giveaway a T-Shirt” comp using the above method, but realistically other than seeing your “talking about this” sky rocket, it’s a whole lot of work for very little return.

I’m not trying to rain on anyone’s parade here, or being a spoil sport because it’s what I do as part of my services, let’s look at a comparison chart below:

As you can see, although the rules being relaxed to make “Like” competitions ok on Facebook, three key elements are missing from the mix. Email gathering to grow your marketing list (make sure you have a Privacy Policy that states this, in addition you will find that Woobox gives you an option for people to tick and give their express permission for you to add them to your email database). The other key element not available is setting up a Fan Gate, to make sure people have to Like your Facebook Page in order to view and enter the competition and essentially grow your Page numbers fast!

A FREE Tick-list to Make Sure You Don’t Miss Any Elements!

Here’s a free tick-list for you to make sure you aren’t missing any of the elements detailed above, that you can use again and again! Enjoy, and let your business friends know too – let’s make sure everyone gets it right first time, all the time. 😉

Please note: Before deciding whether or not to run a competition, you need to make sure you meet UK Gambling Law guidelines (link) and take advice from a Legal Professional, this post in no way constitutes Legal Advice (as I’m not a Legal Professional!)