For the last 18 months there has been a lot of confusion on Facebook about how to run competitions. The official company line from Facebook stated that all competitions needed to be ran through 3rd party apps that would collect data of the entrants.
As a company Dokoo carried out a number of competitions for clients where we built bespoke apps. These competitions were extremely successful but the only downside was the fact some users didn’t trust third party apps storing their data. We can understand this as cyber-security has become a more pertinent issue to Facebook users when they hear of stories in the mainstream media such as the prism surveillance operation in the USA.
So, what does the new competition changes mean, below is the official press release from Facebook:
“We’ve removed the requirement that promotions on Facebook only be administered through apps.
Now, promotions may be administered on Page Timelines and in apps on Facebook. For example, businesses can now:
Collect entries by having users post on the Page or comment/like a Page post
Collect entries by having users message the Page
Utilize likes as a voting mechanism
As before, however, businesses cannot administer promotions on personal Timelines.
Accurate tagging is required in promotions
In order to maintain the accuracy of Page content, our Pages Terms now prohibit Pages from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content that they are not actually depicted in. So, for instance:
It’s OK to ask people to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize
It’s not OK to ask people tag themselves in pictures of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize”
Upon first inspection this news sounds good to the small business owner but at Dokoo we think that these changes could turn your Facebook timeline into spam central. We have a feeling we will be seeing more competitions such as “we have too many MacBook’s in stock, like and share for a chance to win one”.
Is there still a place for Facebook competition apps? In our opinion yes, at Dokoo we think apps are an important part in creating a sales pipeline. One competition app we ran for a business collected over 1000 email addresses and phone numbers who were happy to be contacted by our client, these have resulted in thousands of pounds in new sales.
At Dokoo we bow to the new changes by Facebook and think that generally this can be a good move to help smaller businesses use Facebook more. Which, in turn will lead to more of these businesses spending money on Facebook ads promoting their competitions, which ultimately gives FB more money. Our one concern is the lack of unregulated competitions that could appear with no transparency of winners. Good luck folks and remember not everything that glitters is gold.