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How To Run A Facebook Contest (Tips)

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No doubt you have seen contests on Facebook and may even have wondered how to make them work for you, or even why should you use Facebook contests? There are really three great reasons. You can build your base of followers; you can engage people directly with your brand and you can gather a ton of data on people. All of these are important to you and your marketing goals. We can even throw one more in there and say that with contests you can get your customers and prospects to do the marketing for you as they participate and share with others. Maximize your marketing by including contests.

Creating Facebook contests are so much fun! However, if you have never done one before it can seem intimidating, or if you have tried once before and it did not go well you may be unsure of trying again. To get you started we will give you some tips and ideas as well as look at some great examples. The best part about contests is how creative you can get. You are only limited by your imagination and the imaginations of your audience.  You should also check out the post on How to Maximize Your Facebook Marketing Strategy for Optimal Results before you get started.

Tips to get you started:

  • Goals – Before you do anything, set your goals. What are you trying to accomplish with this contest? Written goals for your whole team to see are very important. Post results as they come in for the whole team to see.
  • Tracking – How will you know if you accomplished your goals? How are you going to track it? Assign tracking tasks to specific people on your team. You don’t want the contest to end without you knowing the specific metrics that matter most.
  • Prize – If you want audience participation to be sure to create a prize that they will want. It does not need to be an expensive prize, just one that is covered.
  • Complexity – Use the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) method. The more steps people have to go through to participate the more people will drop off without completing the steps. You want to make them work a little bit by giving you valuable information to add to your data.
  • Audience –Target to the people most likely to respond and if your offer is only good in the US to make sure to target only people who reside in the US. The better you target the more response you are going to get.

Do you know How Brands Can Use Social Media To Fulfil Consumers’ Expectation? Make sure that you do before you create your contest. Knowing who your best customers and prospects are as well as what they want is important to the success of your contest. Now we are ready to look at some fun Facebook contest ideas. There are tons of them out there and I am sure you can think of some new creative ones right now. Let’s look at five to get your creative ideas flowing.

  • Naming > A contest to name your new product or service
  • Vote > A contest where people vote on what they think you are best at or between 2 products or services.
  • Trivia > A trivia contest to see who knows the most about a particular topic.
  • Photo Caption > A photo caption contest. This can be really funny. Make sure the image is in line with your brand and also something people can have fun captioning.
  • Fill in the Blank > You create a sentence and leave part of it blank, then ask people to fill in the blank. Very easy to do.

The options are unlimited. Sit down with your team and hash out ideas that will work best for your brand and your prospects or customers. Remember to keep it fun. To do this you can make a list of ideas and then find the pros and cons of each one. Now you are ready to pick your top idea. Be sure to review the current terms and conditions from Facebook about contests, you do not want to break the rules. The best part is contest does not cost a lot of money and you control the rewards, so if a contest is not doing as good as you had hoped you can change it up next time.

Finally, we will look at some examples others have done that worked really well. There are a ton of examples online for you to look through that was great marketing. It is also a good idea to check on the ones that performed poorly so that you do not make the same mistakes. Are you ready to check out three fun contest examples?

    1. Dove:  “Real Beauty Should Be Shared” contest on Facebook was great! They asked Fans to post a photo and tell them why their friend represents real beauty. They needed to provide the friend’s name and two things that make them beautiful. The best part is there were no prize gimmicks, just a chance to be the new face of Dove. Why do I like this one so much? Because it includes real people being nominated by someone they know and carrying forward Dove’s message about the diversity of real beauty. How can you do something like this?
    2. Briggs & Stratton: “Mower Mouth” contest on Facebook was really funny. They held a video contest on Facebook called Mower Mouth that asked people to submit videos impersonating the sound a lawn mower makes. The invented a new quiet motor, so for the prize they offered $5,000 cash and a new lawn mower with QPT technology. Why do I like this one so much? Because it uses humor to demonstrate how obnoxiously loud we think lawn mowers are and they offer a product that is not loud. How can you do something like this?
    3. Liberty Mutual: “30 Days, 30 Ways” contest on Facebook was patriotic. This was 30 days of Olympic giveaways, and 30 ways fans can show their support and win. Users were required to provide basic information like name, email and phone number to enter for a chance to win daily giveaways including, Team USA apparel and signed merchandise. Each daily entrant was also entered into the grand prize drawing. Why do I like this one so much? Because they created a bond between their brand and Olympic athletes as well as being patriotic. The brand was seen in a very positive light. How can you do something like this?

As you can see, there are a lot of varieties of contests out there. Get creative and find a fun interactive contest to get started planning. Contests can be a great way to engage your audience and have fun! Not only do you need to be creative, but also targeted at the right group of people. Finally, you need to be ready to track your results. Many times contests take on a life of their own and reach broader audiences than you ever thought possible. Just make sure you give participants the ability to share the contest with friends.

Enhance the power of your marketing with fun Facebook contests. Are you ready to get started?

Summer Gould
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