Published: 16/08/2018

How to run a successful Facebook competition

You’ve got your company Facebook page; you know who your audience are what type of content they like. So what do you do now? How do you keep your audience interested and engaged in a way which is fun and also beneficial to both of you? It takes effort; but one tactic you could implement is running a competition. This can be excellent at creating buzz around your business. It also presents opportunities to gain more leads and create greater brand awareness around your business.

But hold on, don’t get too excited. Don’t just start a competition because you think it will gain you exposure. If you decide to run a competition, it needs to be something worthwhile that your audience will get genuine benefit from. Here's some tips that could help you run a successful Facebook competition.

Determine the purpose

Of course you want to create engagement amongst your audience. But there needs to be a more specific purpose than this. Are you looking for more qualified leads? Or perhaps you are after more likes and shares on your Facebook page? Maybe all you are after is more subscriptions to your company newsletter? Whatever it is you are looking for, it’s important that you have this purpose clear in your mind. Once you know what you want to achieve, you’ll have a much better idea of how your contest will be structured.

Segment your audience for the right prize

Now this will really show how well you know your audience. Don’t just hand out something generic that most people will have or not need (the latest iPad for instance). Instead, think about something that they will really like. You will probably have to take a look at Facebook Analytics to get a break down of your audience and what their interests are for a better picture. And while this won’t give you something definitive, it will give you a clue about what type of prize will peak their interest - which is ultimately what you want. Perhaps you’re thinking ‘I have more than one audience’. No problem. Run a few contests to appeal to your different buyers, that way everyone gets a prize catered to their needs and you get more engagement - a win win for you. Another tactic that you could use is to give your own products away. Why not, it will create interest and will also create a sense of reciprocity with them. Show that your product is almost like a treat.

Choose the right type of contest

Now that you know what prize to give, what's next? Try and think about what type of contest you will use. This is really important, because a good structure will give you a better chance to create an engaging contest. Facebook gives you a few options to choose from when you are setting up a contest. They are the following:

Sweepstake - Probably the most simple format of all. All a participant needs to do is share or like a post, then they will be put into a sweepstake and have a chance to win a prize. There are also instant win contests which work in a similar way to a sweepstake. The difference is the participant will know immediately whether they have won or lost (a bit like a slot machine).

Photos - If what you’re after is user-generated content then this is the best way to get it. Why not ask your participants to share their photos, captioned with a hashtag that is about the competition. Let’s say you have a fun product, why not ask the participants to share it in their photo. Not only does this allow your audience to engage on their level, but it can be tremendous brand exposure as well.

Refer a friend - Why not increase the chance for someone to win your contest through this interesting option. This is how it works: when a participant shares a sign up sheet with a friend and that friend enters, they will be given an extra chance to win the contest. Boom. You get more engagement and more awareness of your product.

Like and enter - Now this won’t present you with many opportunities for engagement. You won’t be collecting participants details from this simple format. All you need to do is ask someone to like your post and they'll have entered. By using a comment/like tool, you could then pick a winner at random.

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