Things have changed recently (as they always do in Facebook World) and I have been getting a lot of questions about what can and can't be done when running a Facebook contest since the rules were changed back in August 2013. You can now run a contest without a third party app on your Page (not personal Profile/Timeline). You can use Likes and Comments as a means of entry to your contest. You can even announce the winner on your Page (something you could not do before). But, one thing you can NOT do that I still see a lot of Page doing is ask users to SHARE in order to be entered to win.
Here's a handy breakdown of what you can and can’t do to run a contest on your Page:
(from Social Media Examiner)
What You Can Do:
- Require people to like a post and/or comment on a post to be entered
- Require that someone post something directly on your timeline to enter (could be a text post or a photo)
- Use likes as a voting method (either liking a post or photo on your timeline)
- Require that someone message your page to enter
- Announce the winner of the contest on your page
- Require that to win the prize, entrants come back to your page to see who has won the contest
- Use a Like button plugin on a website as a voting mechanism
- Use an app plugin to post an entry to your contest directly on your page
- Run your contest through a Facebook app
What You Can’t Do:
- Require that people share a post or photo to be entered
- Require someone to post something on their own personal timeline or a friend’s timeline to enter
- Require people to tag themselves in a photo to either vote or enter
- Have anyone who likes your page be entered to win (contest does not take place on the timeline)
To be clear on "sharing" (because this is the most misunderstood part), Page owners can encourage their fans to share the contest but sharing cannot be a form of entering the contest. You can enter to win by liking or commenting. You cannot enter by sharing. Each like/comment can be a way to enter. Sharing can NOT. Click HERE for a link to great article by PostPlanner that gives some examples of what is not allowed.
Below are a couple of my favorite resources for running a FREE contest on your Page Timeline EASILY:
Contest Capture is an easy, free tool that lets you keep track of contest entries via Likes and Comments on a Post and export them into a .csv file. You can then randomly select your winner by entering the total number of lines from your exported file onto a site like random.org. Easy and free!
- Your contest rules
- A disclaimer that your promotion is not endorsed, sponsored, administered by, or associated with Facebook
- And that anyone who enters agrees to the rules and releases Facebook of any obligation