Sunday, 20 September 2015

How To Run A Giveaway On Facebook Without Breaking The Rules

How many times do you see a Facebook business page running some kind of competition and asking people to like and share their status or image?

Did you know that (at the time of writing) it is against Facebook rules to ask people to share competition details?

Let's have a look at ways to stay within Facebook guidelines to run your giveaway successfully

1. Collecting Entries

To qualify for an entry, you may ask people to:

* Like your page if they don't already
* Post a photo or make a comment directly to your page
* Post a photo or make a comment in the comments of a post
* Send a message to your page
* Like a post
* Answer a question and win by being the first person to answer correctly, or get chosen as a winner from all the correct entries received

You cannot ask people to:

* Share a photo or post
* Tag themselves or any of their friends in a photo or post
* Ask people to post the link on their own or their friends' timelines

2. Release Facebook From Liability

You must state somewhere that your promotion is not being run by Facebook. 
Either draft your own release, or copy and paste the following

** This contest does not have a connection with Facebook in any way and is not sponsored, supported or organised by Facebook.  The recipient of any information provided by entrants is YOUR BUSINESS NAME and not Facebook **

You can state this in your post itself, or within your terms and conditions link (see below)

3. Make Your Terms of Entry and T&Cs Available

If your competition is only available to people over the age of 18, or can only be won by people within a certain geographical location, or any other qualifying factor, you need to make this information clear and readily available.

To avoid cluttering up your post with endless text, make your terms and conditions available to read at another online location, such as a dedicated page on your website or blog for instance.

If you do not have your own website or blog where you could upload this information to and provide a link for people to view, make a Word document or a PDF file and save to somewhere like Dropbox or Google Docs

When I was writing this article, I struggled to find examples of promotions being run correctly on Facebook - even some big name companies were asking people to share the post to their personal timelines as part of the entry process.  So much so, I did some research to see if the guidelines had changed and I simply hadn't realised, but this is what I found in Facebook's own Help Centre

(screen shot from this page here)

They also have this to say on a downloadable PDF (here)

Q: Why can’t I ask people to take part in a promotion by liking, sharing, or posting something on their personal Timeline?

We want to make sure that people continue to post authentic, high quality content to their Facebook Timelines to stay better connected with the people they care about. There are technical reasons for confining the administration of the promotion to either a Page or in an app. For example, because people can choose to limit the visibility of the content they put on Facebook to only themselves, friends, or to a custom group of people, Pages won’t have the ability to access all of the entries that people post on their own Timelines unless these entries are public. We may explore enabling this in the future, but to ensure a good experience for administrators of promotions and prospective entrants to a promotion, we are limiting the administration of promotions on Facebook to Pages and within apps at this time

Here are some great examples of contests being run correctly

StickyAlbum forced people to click to an external website to enter to win - no doubt to collect data

When this page ran their giveaway, they asked people to like their page, like the post and comment on the post as well as having a link to their terms and conditions.

Joules run a #winitwednesday contest each week

with a link to their terms and conditions:

Another thing to consider when running a giveaway is what does your business want to gain from it?  If it's just to increase the engagement to your page, then following the advice outlined above should go someway to seeing a boost in views to your page.

However, if you want to collect data such as emails or addresses, you will need to host your giveaway through a third-party app that will collect this information on your behalf.

One of the best apps to use for this is Woobox or Rafflecopter and using third party apps such as these to host your giveaway or contest, will guarantee that you run your promotion safely within the guidelines of Facebook - whatever they may be at the time.

And finally, just because you see lots and lots of business pages asking people to share their promotion to enter, it doesn't mean they are not at risk of having their page closed down by Facebook without notice.  I have known two business pages to be shut down overnight with no explanation or warning given.

Don't let this happen to you!

Details correct at time of going to press - 20th September 2015

Suggested further reading :

No comments:

Post a Comment