A Comprehensive Guide for Launching Successful Facebook Contests

With the rise of social media, entrepreneurs and marketers are capitalizing on platforms like Facebook to engage their audience. Yet, with intense competition, how do you make your brand stand out? The answer lies in effective Facebook contests that amplify online engagement and breed brand loyalty. In this article, we will walk you through the strategies and guidelines to host successful Facebook contests that drive traffic and ensure increased customer retention.

Understand Facebook’s Policies on Contests

Facebook has specific guidelines for online contests that every business must adhere to. Ignorance of these rules can result in the disqualification of your contest or even the suspension of your brand's Facebook page. To stay compliant, avoid asking users to share content on their personal timelines or tag their friends to participate in the contest as this violates Facebook’s policy. Updates and changes to the policy are made from time to time so businesses must keep abreast of the latest regulations.

Define Your Goals

A clear goal is crucial for every successful contest. It can range from broad objectives like promoting brand awareness, increasing page likes or followers, to specific tasks such as promoting a new product or service. Goal definition steers the planning process, helping you decide on the type of contest and its execution.

Choose the Right Type of Contest

The type of contest largely depends on your defined goals. For increasing engagement, simple contests like 'Like or Comment to win' are preferable; photo or video contests can showcase your customer's creativity and affirmation to the brand. Timing of the contest, duration, and nature of the prize to be won also play a role in deciding the type of contest.

Design an Entry Method That Enhances Engagement

How participants enter your contest can have a considerable impact on its success. Entry methods such as liking or sharing a post, answering a question or voting for a product, have different degrees of interaction. Choose an entry method that aligns with your goals but also encourages high user involvement.

Select a Relevant Prize

The prize should be appealing enough to lure in participants, but it must also be relevant to your brand. Offering high-value but unrelated prizes may attract a lot of entries but these users may not be interested in your brand or products which fails the purpose of the contest altogether. On the other hand, offering your products or services as prizes allows you to attract an audience truly interested in your brand.

Promote Your Contest

Announcing your contest is not enough; marketers must take active steps to promote it. Utilizing each of your existing marketing channels - email, blogs, other social media, and your website, can help spread the word about your contest. You can also consider investing in paid promotions for larger reach and better engagement.

Track, Measure, Evaluate

The value of a contest is gauged by evaluating its results. Set up a tracking mechanism right from the start to capture the necessary data. Use these to assess the success of your contest against the defined goals. This assessment will provide you with insights that can guide you in planning future contests.