Ok I have to admit this is a bit of a pet peeve for me and I’ve hesitated writing this blog for this same reason.
It seems that there are seasons on Facebook where contests of all sorts keep springing up or a new page is hosting a promotion to create awareness. Most of them are really good and I even won an overnight stay from a contest I saw posted on a Facebook page.
However this is where it gets a bit sticky. It seems that very few people are aware that the contests or promotions are not in compliance with Facebook rules and they are in danger of getting their page shut down!
I myself was ignorant of the rules when I just started with Facebook, I mean how many people actually sit down and read the Terms and Conditions? Unless of course you’re into that sort of thing.
So I want to use this post to encourage those who are running contest, promotions, etc or thinking of doing one to take some time to familiarize yourself with the rules. You’ve already put a lot of work, time, energy into your page, probably built some really good connections, have a great fan base etc… are you willing to take a gamble and risk all that?
Two of the most common rule breakers are:
1. “You must not use Facebook features or functionality as a promotion’s registration or entry mechanism. For example, the act of liking a Page or checking in to a Place cannot automatically register or enter a promotion participant.”
2. “You must not notify winners through Facebook, such as through Facebook messages, chat, or posts on profiles (timelines) or Pages.”
Take the time to go through the Facebook Page Terms it will help you to be able to create contests and promotions that won’t be considered illegal by Facebook.
Now I know that it says that “Promotions on Facebook must be administered within Apps on Facebook.com, either on a Canvas Page or a Page App.” Many small business owners on Facebook in Belize don’t have it in their budget to pay a third party app to run a contest, some might not even own an international credit card. So this poses a problem.
However I have seen some very creative contests that are posted on Facebook pages that didn’t use an app. My favorite is done by Amber Sunset Jungle Resort. Very Creative I think! They are using their blog to host the contest. Now having a blog is highly recommended but that’s another post.
The other page that is also in tourism industry is currently hosting a contest as well. They use a third party app and the contest has been going good so far.
The Inn at Robert’s Grove
Take a look at how they do it and start brainstorming about how you can come up with a successful contest that won’t risk your page getting shut down.
I chose these two pages because these are the ones that I currently know about. If you know of anymore please leave me a link.
If you are a small business owner in Belize or leading an organization and would like to know more about the guidelines or about hosting contests or promotions please leave me a message. I would love to hear from you all.
Now it’s your turn! What are your thoughts about the guidelines and contests/promotions on Facebook?