11 Essential Tips for Running a Facebook Competition

Whether you have run a Facebook competition before or not, you won’t want your competition to fall flat or result in angry followers! You may also not want to spend a huge amount on promoting your competition, and these tips will help you maximise the potential of your competition, get as many people involved as possible and make your competition serve as a big boost for your social media presence and your brand as a whole. 

  • Don’t put off the masses

Ensure the activity that you are asking your followers to do to enter your competition is accessible and doable for the majority of people e.g. “Like our page…” or “explain in 100 words why…” or “play our new game…” or “upload a photo of your favourite…”, rather than “create a 15 minute video about…”.

  • Keep it simple

If the entry method is drawn out or complicated or if there are lengthy instructions and rules to read before entering, people may be put off.

  • Effort vs. Reward

Ensure the prize justifies the effort required to enter. A small prize is suitable for a simple sweepstake, but promotions requiring users to upload photos, create something or carry out an activity will require something more substantial.

  • Create a sense of urgency

For larger promotions it is suitable to run them for 2-4 weeks, and for smaller competitions it could be for 1-2 weeks. Very small competitions on the timeline itself could just be for 24 hours. Whichever you are doing, don’t drag it out for too long and encourage people to enter as soon as possible to avoid them potentially leaving your page and forgetting to come back.

  • Remember the small print

To avoid competition entrants being upset when their entry isn’t accepted or confusion over how the winner is chosen, ensure the details of the promotion are clearly outlined. Should you wish to post entrants’ competition entries on your timeline or in future promotional material, ensure your T’s & C’s state that in entering the competition the entrant understands you may use their content in such a way. In short, cover your bases and think ahead to consider what concerns people may have and what you will want to do with their data and content.

  • Promote, cross-promote, but don’t over promote

Promote the competition across your social channels, your website, offline and on your Facebook timeline every few days or every week if you like, but don’t overdo it as this can be bothersome to people if you are repeating the same message in their timeline each day for the entire duration of your competition.

  • Use profile imagery for publicity

Create a custom Cover Image that is highlights the promotion to help capture followers’ attention, e.g.

  • ‘Highlight’ your posts

After posting on your timeline you can click in the top right hand corner of the post to produce a drop-down menu. In the menu, click ‘Highlight’. This will stick the post to the top of your page for up to 30 days and make the post take up the full width of the timeline.

  • Ensure your ‘Competitions’ tab is visible

Place it as one of the top 4 tabs that shows on your page and make sure it is not hidden behind others. The ‘Photos’ tab is fixed in place, but all others are moveable. E.g.

  • Give it some Facebook Advertising

A competition can be an effective lure to quickly build a Facebook following via Facebook advertising. Particularly if your Facebook page is relatively new, a competition can fall flat through lack of exposure, so use ads to reach more people.

(If you don’t have the budget for Facebook Advertising, why not check out our blog on how to promote your page for free!)

  • Maximise Sharing

Make it as easy as possible for competition entrants to share your competition with their friends and help publicise it for you. Once somebody has entered the competition, include the option for them to post a pre-populate post on their wall to tell their friends ‘I might win a ______, I just entered the ______ competition! Here’s the link if you want to enter as well, it ends soon!’  

  • Don’t forget the follow up

A promotion is likely to peak your existing followers’ interest in the page and attract plenty of new followers, so your best quality and most engaging content should be lined up for posting alongside your competition and in the weeks following it. This will help to secure people’s attention for a longer period and help keep your posts showing in their newsfeeds. Also, delve into your App Analytics, Google Analytics or captured data to identify any insights that you can from your followers.

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Paul Jackson

Senior Digital Marketing Consultant

With almost a decade of experience in digital marketing, both in-house and agency-side, Paul is a CIM qualified Chartered Marketer with expertise and a refreshing approach. Paul’s experience with a diverse mix of brands in a wide range of industries has allowed him to see first-hand the importance of a tailored and business-oriented approach to marketing.