I'm sure you've run across promotions on Facebook that have left you feeling like the company was just trying to harvest your data. And there's nothing wrong with having a promotion to get more likes or follows—that's part of how businesses grow. The problem generally arises when promotions are poorly executed. Here's how you can make good use of your Facebook promotions while still being fair and transparent with your fans:
Figure out the goal of the promotion.
When you're planning a promotion, it's important to figure out the goal of your campaign. A promotion can be used for many different purposes:
- To increase awareness of your brand and gain new fans
- To increase product sales or downloads of an app
- To gather contact information in exchange for a free gift or discount code (aka email list building)
Stay on top of Facebook's promotion rules.
Facebook's rules are subject to change. The same rule in one country might be different than another country, and even if it's the exact same rule, it can still be applied differently depending on the type of business you're promoting or when and where your promotion runs.
For example, if you're running a giveaway contest on Facebook in the United States, there are specific rules about how much money people have to contribute before they're allowed to enter—but those minimum contributions vary depending on whether or not they can claim their prize by mail (in which case all entrants must contribute at least $2) or online (in which case all entrants must contribute at least $5).
This is just one small example of how Facebook promotions can get confusing quickly if you don't fully understand how each one works. To keep yourself safe from breaking any rules that could result in getting banned from running promotions altogether (and who wants that?), we've put together this list of important things to keep in mind as you plan your next promotion:
Consider using a third-party app.
There are a variety of third-party apps that can help you with everything from collecting entries to running giveaways. Some even have social media integration, so you don't have to do it yourself. And some, like Woobox, will even let you run your promotions on Instagram, if that's your thing.
But if you're looking for the best results possible, consider using an app with analytics built in—this way, once prizes are awarded and winners notified (usually within 48 hours), you'll know exactly how many people entered your contest and what their behavior was like during the promotion period.
Make sure that your promotion is mobile-friendly.
If you're not sure whether your Facebook promotion is mobile-friendly, check out the following tips:
- Keep it short and to the point. There's no need to fill up space with additional text when you could just show an image of what people are getting if they sign up for your offer.
- Use a mobile-friendly image. The slower connection speed on smartphones means that images take longer to load, so make sure yours look great even at low resolution! (For example, don't use filters that blur out all details.)
- Use a mobile-friendly URL. This will make it easier for people who click through from their phone's browser or newsfeed app to navigate directly where they need to go without having to copy/paste anything first (which can be harder than it sounds).
- Use a mobile-friendly call-to-action button text! It should say exactly what users will get when they click "Get Yours Now" rather than "Get Yours Now!".
Give your fans a compelling reason to enter your contest or giveaway.
There's a reason "I want to win" is one of the most common phrases on Facebook. People love winning things, and they love winning things that will make them feel good about themselves or their lives in some way. So, if you want your promotion to be a success, give your fans something they'll actually use—like a gift card for their favorite store, or tickets to an event that's already happening so they can skip out on work early.
If even this seems too much like actual work for you, consider offering something more intangible: free advice from your team, access to exclusive content (like behind-the-scenes sneak peaks), etc. If people are going to spend their valuable time entering your contest or giveaway anyway—and they will! —do whatever it takes to make sure they leave feeling happy about having done so!
Start promoting before launching your contest or giveaway.
When you start promoting your contest or giveaway, make sure that you have a good number of fans, likes, shares and comments on a daily basis. If people are not engaging with your page and liking posts regularly then they may not be interested in what you have to offer. This is particularly important for contests and giveaways because you want to make sure that there is enough interest generated before launching the actual promotion.
Educate users about how to enter.
- Include a link to the rules and guidelines.
- Make it easy for people to enter via social media by including a “share” button. This way, they can easily and quickly share your giveaway on their own pages, which will help you grow your reach exponentially.
- Giveaway tools like Gleam have made entry forms so simple that anyone can use them without having any technical skills at all!
Be smart about asking for permission to contact entrants after the promotion has ended.
You can also use Facebook to ask entrants for permission to contact them after the promotion has ended. If a visitor gives you permission, you can send them emails or text messages with information about your product or service. Be smart about asking for permission to contact entrants after the promotion has ended. Don't spam people with too many messages! Also, don't ask for too much information—only what's necessary and relevant (e.g., name, email address and phone number).
Craft an engaging post announcing the promotion winner(s).
Remember, the point of your promotion is to get people to enter and get them excited about your brand. So be sure that your post announcing the winner(s) will be engaging!
First, make sure you include a photo or video of the winner. You can also use this opportunity to showcase other participants (with their permission), which will help keep them engaged in future promotions. Don't just say "congratulations" or "you won." Instead, you should write something like "We are so excited for [name] who has won our local coffee shop gift card! They'll enjoy spending $20 at [location]. Thanks everyone who entered! Don't forget about our next promotion coming soon!"
You can make promotions on Facebook very effective if you do them well
Facebook is a great place to promote your business. Whether you're doing it yourself or using a third-party app, you can run promotions for free or for a fee. You can also use giveaways or contests (or both) as part of your strategy to get more people interested in what you're selling. There are many ways of promoting yourself on Facebook; this article will focus on getting started with promotions that use either the Promote button or Boost posts from pages within the social network itself.
The first thing to remember when conducting contests and giveaways is that they need not be complicated. In fact, the simpler and more straightforward they are—within reason—the better off everyone involved tends to be!
Congratulations, you’ve made it to the end of our blog post about Facebook promotions. Now we want to hear from you! Do you have any more tips for running a great Facebook promotion? What are some of your own favorite ways to use Facebook for promotional purposes? Let us know in the comments section below!
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