Though contests and giveaways on Facebook can be fun, they’re a lot more complicated than you may think. The specific rules and regulations of Facebook must be carefully followed or you run the risk of losing your company page all together! Facebook has specific Page Terms pertaining to contests and giveaways to help page owners understand the rules (check out Section E here). At SocialNicole, we’ve had plenty of practice following these rules with our clients! Therefore we understand that they can be difficult to dissect and hard to understand at first. To help you out, we’ve broken down the key restrictions so you can learn how to protect your page and run your contest the right way. You need to use a third-party app to administer your contest Though you don’t need written permission from Facebook or an account representative at Facebook in order to run your contest, you still must administer all Facebook contests through a third-party app on the Facebook platform. This is a big one. If you intend to run a promotion or contest on Facebook, you have to run it on a Canvas Page or a Page App. You cannot run the promotion on your timeline or profile page. If you decide to ignore this restriction, you run the risk being shut down by Facebook. Wildfire, Votigo and NorthSocial are all viable app options to run your contest through. You can’t validate an entry through ‘liking’ or tagging You’re allowed to restrict your promotion only to entrants who have already ‘liked’ your page as long as you’ve used a third-party app to administer your contest. However, you cannot accept ‘liking’ or tagging as a form of entrance into the contest. The act of ‘liking’ your page is not an acceptable form of entry, as it excludes those who already ‘like’ your page. Put simply, you’re not allowed to use Facebook features and functionality (for example, the ‘like’ button) as a way to let entrants vote. Clearly and visibly set out your contest terms Contests and promotions on Facebook must have clear terms and conditions that are visible directly on the Canvas Page. Facebook requires that you include a complete release of Facebook by each who enters, acknowledgment that the contest is not affiliated with or sponsored by Facebook, as well as a disclosure statement that the entrant is providing information to someone besides Facebook. Make sure you check with the laws and regulations your state may have associated to contests and sweepstakes as well. Don’t select a fan at random Because you’re not allowed to use Facebook to “collect entires,” you’re not allowed to choose a fan winner at random. You must select a winner from the people who have entered your contest through a third party application as outlined above. Don’t make this simple mistake! Informing your winner If you’ve made it to the point of selecting a contest winner while successfully following all the restrictions, congratulations! But remember, you’re not allowed to notify your winner through Facebook. Shoot them an email, give them a call, even tweet at them – just don’t contact your winner through Facebook. Although setting up a contest is not simple, it can be a worthwhile endeavor. If you are interested in running a contest on Facebook, SocialNicole offers professional advice. Our expert team is eager to help you with every detail: brainstorming contest ideas, creating artwork, even finding a 3rd party application! So what are you waiting for? Contact our team here and let’s get started today! Do you have experience or advice about running a Facebook contest? Leave your thoughts below! Photo Credit
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