How to Run a Facebook Contest (and why)

facebook contest Many of the businesses I work with have Facebook pages, some don’t post frequently enough to get a lot of engagement, others post a lot, but haven’t seen the engagement and activity they would like. What can be done to generate more interest in their page? Successful Facebook marketing is not about blasting your fans with business information, but creating community and being useful so they share it with others.  In all likelihood, the fans you have, especially in the beginning, are already customers.  Your goal is to provide them value and information that they are willing to share with others like them, who will come to your page, engage and eventually become a customer as well. In the beginning, engagement and community can be really hard, and one way to create some excitement about your page, increasing likes, comments, and shares is a contest. Recently, I was able to pick the brain of the marketing director of successful agency, and he gave me several tips he has implemented that has made contests an important part of their Facebook strategy. Tips to Run a Facebook Contest 1.  Make the contest duration short.  Usually several days to a week.  Admit it, your attention span is short, and so is your customers, the shorter ones create more activity.

For example, you might post this on a Thursday: “You have until noontime on Monday, [Month & Day] to leave your comment, and if you’d like an additional entry, share this post!”

2.  Give away Gift Cards from $30 – $50 to restaurants, movies, gas, car wash, etc. 3.  Team up with local businesses to help you promote.  If there are any businesses you currently insure or geographically close to you that offer gift cards or certificates, give those away as part of your contest.  If that business has an Facebook page, ask them to promote. 4.  Use engaging pictures on your contest.  I am a fan of Photopin to find great royalty free pictures. 5.  Ask for comments or an answer to a crazy question.

Here’s an example:   [Insert Pizza Picture]   “We’d love to hear what your favorite pizza topping is, so be sure to let us know in the comments section! In return, you could win a $40 gift card!”

or

“[Agency name] would love to know what your favorite summer activity is, so be sure to let us know in the comments section! In return, YOU COULD WIN $50!!”

6.  Think Community Charity.  For a month give a donation to a local charity of a $1 for every new like. Anytime you get a new like, announce it in the Facebook feed, and gave a running total of how much money you are generating.  The key is to partner with a local charity that can help you promote it.  $1 may not be enough to generate activity, but this agency generated almost 80 likes in a month. 7.  Get employees to promote.  This is big.  Every time they do a promotion, they make sure that any employees active online will share the contest through their social networks. 8.  Include a disclaimer.  You can not run a contest that appears that it is endorsed or generated by Facebook.  If you are really concerned about all the legal disclaimers, then you can a Facebook app.

Example:  “This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You understand that you are providing your information to [Your Business Name] and not to Facebook. The information you provide will only be used for the [Your Business Name] and related communications.”

9.  Celebrate the Winner.  As soon as the contest is over, announce the winner immediately.  If you have them come by your business to pick up the gift, take their picture, and ask if you can post it.  Make a big deal about it, and have fun with it.

Here’s a complete example: how to run a facebook contest   So what are you waiting for!  If engagement on your Facebook page has been a problem, try out these tip, and let us what kind of response you get in comments below.  Also, what has been your experience with contests? Be Productive, Theron Mathis P.S.  A great thank you to Matthew House at Preferred Insurance Center for spending time letting me pick his brain about his agency marketing.