The most important thing when setting up a promotion is making sure you meet Facebook’s technical, design and legal requirements. Be sure to check for the latest requirements before running any sort of Facebook contest, sweepstakes or giveaway. Facebook recently wrote:
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.
Stir marketing specializes in social media marketing, advertising and promotions. Over the years we’ve run many social media sweepstakes and Facebook Timeline promotions. With hundreds of Facebook likes, comments and shares, the ROI of Facebook Timeline promotions is particularly well-suited to small and medium-sized businesses. It doesn’t take a massive budget to see huge results.
6 Tips For Running a Successful Facebook Timeline Promotion For Your Company
- Make a Marketing Plan: If you build it they won’t necessarily come. We recommend using Facebook ads to boost your promotion to increase your chances of reaching your target audience. Consider how you can cross-promote the campaign in your email newsletter, website, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube or other social channels. Consider partnering with another business that might be willing to provide the prizes for the promotion in exchange for having their company name or Facebook Page or website included in all mentions of the promotion.
- Clarify your Goals: Decide whether you want to increase Page likes, to maximize Post likes and shares, to get people to sign up for something with their email address or submit comments. A good campaign will accomplish one or two of these goals. Resist the urge to attempt to reach all four with a single promotion.
- Understand the Rules: It’s important to know and follow Facebook’s rules. Remember, you can’t require users to share the contest post in order to enter. Have promotion entry and restrictions clearly defined in your contest rules. Be specific in naming your prizes and state upfront how and when the winner will be chosen. You will be legally accountable to the terms of your promotion. Make sure you know what you’re committing to. Make sure you understand the legal ramifications of your contest.
- Pick a Theme: Facebook promotions can include tests, quizzes, free prize drawings, raffles and other contests or discounts. Make sure your promotion is of interest to your target audience, engaging, timely, professionally designed, and has high share value.
- Be Creative and Unique: Make your promotion stand out visually and conceptually. Dont be just another boring “Like to Win” promotion with no real incentive or interest to your target audience. Think through why someone would actually want to like or share your promotional content.
- Offer Great Prizes: Nothing makes a promotion fall flat on its face faster than small, uninspiring prizes. Offer something great, but make sure you’ve thought through prize fulfillment. It’s one thing to offer an amazing prize, but if the prize weights 100lbs and you have to courier it to the winner overseas things can get expensive very quickly.
- Do It Right: If you’re not 100% confident in your company’s ability to plan, setup and run online promotion that meets all legal and Facebook rules, then start by reaching out to an expert social media contests consultant or social media agency to ensure it’s done right and to maximize your ROI.
Putting it all Together
Here are three examples of Facebook promotions we created for clients. Partnering with local businesses allowed us to source great prizes and further increase exposure for the promotion. We boosted the promotional posts with Facebook advertising to target the specific age, sex, location and interests of our key audiences.
Add-A-Pearl’s Fall 2015 Facebook Timeline Sweepstakes
Add-A-Pearl used a Facebook Timeline Sweepstakes to reach out to new customers and re-engage with their existing fan base. The sweepstakes started with a great prize package – a beautiful pearl starter necklace, a pair of pearl earrings and a silver heart-shaped keepsake box, all from Add-A-Pearl’s own line of jewelry.
Customers were thrilled with the prize and quickly began to share the contest with friends and family. In addition to the great numbers on Facebook, the sweepstakes lead to some fantastic feedback from customers which Add-A-Pearl can use in future marketing efforts.
People Reached: 16 244
Facebook Likes, Comments and Shares: 866
Spruceland Homes and Flora Bunda Florist Mother’s Day Social Media Promotion 2015
Spruceland Homes came to Stir for a comprehensive online marketing plan that would maximize their online presence and generate more leads. As part of their campaign we partnered with another business in Chilliwack’s Garrison Crossing – Flora Bunda Flower Shoppe – to create a special promotion for Mother’s Day. Flora Bunda’s beautiful hanging baskets were a natural fit for Spruceland’s audience of current and potential home owners. The Facebook Timeline promotion was a simple contest that ran for 20 days with great ROI. In the results below “Facebook Actions” refers to the number of people who liked, shared, clicked or commented on the post.
People Reached: 14,704
Facebook Likes, Comments and Shares: 758
Spruceland Homes and Cheam Leisure Centre Father’s Day Social Media Promotion 2015
People Reached: 13 734
Facebook Likes, Comments and Shares: 278
Facebook Timeline Contests Using Video
Another way to increase the audience for your Facebook Timeline Contest is to use a video. It’s no secret that videos work well on Facebook. Facebook Media reports that, “Since June 2014, Facebook has averaged more than 1 billion video views every day. On average, more than 50% of people who come back to Facebook every day in the US watch at least one video daily.” For best results, keep the video short and engaging.
- Facebook Promotion Guidelines [Facebook pdf]