Posted by : Amanda Stein Thursday, January 23, 2014

facebook contest rules
In August of this year, in an effort to attract more brands to their platform (and thus more people willing to use their advertising options), Facebook did a pretty big announcement:

Brand pages are now able to directly run contests on their timelines, no apps required.

While the guidelines are pretty straightforward, they are still often misunderstood. Let's create a simple cheatsheet of what you can and cannot do:


1. NO contests on your personal page
I can't believe how many people still confuse Facebook pages with Facebook profiles!
Facebook profile Facebook PAGE
You, a human being, with friends, education, job history and hobbies Your business, company, website, blog
Is tied to...
Your personal email address (and optionally) your personal phone number Your Facebook profile
Facebook pages were formerly known as FAN pages. I think that was easier to understand back then.
Tip: If you messed up and created a profile instead of a page for your business, you can convert it here.
2. NO requirement to share anything on personal profiles to enter
Similarly to #1, you cannot demand that participants use their personal profiles to "enter" the contest. You may still say they are welcome to if they love your contest, but you cannot make it a requirement.
3. No misleading tagging on photos
Facebook is very careful as to what type of the content they are hosting. If a person is tagging him- or herself in a photo, he / she is supposed to be there.
If you encourage people to tag themselves on product pages to enter the contest, you are encouraging to spread misleading content (as they are not actually "depicted in" that picture). So this is a huge no.


1. Do include a thorough list of official rules
Facebook requires you to have a good list of the contest rules including eligibility requirements. Be sure to include clear step-by-step description of how you will be picking the winners. Also don't forget to make it clear which prizes you are giving away.
2. Do include a disclaimer that Facebook has nothing to do with the contest:
Based on the official terms, you need to include:
Acknowledgment that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
To be on the safe side, avoid phrases like "Official Facebook Contest by..." because it may sound as if Facebook has anything to do with your contest.
3. Do use Facebook to collect entries
Facebook allows you to collect entries using the following options (which make the contest much more fun!):
  • Users can enter by posting in the Page timeline
  • Users can enter by commenting or liking any of the Page updates
4. Do use likes as a voting mechanism
For example, your users may submit photos of your products to your Facebook page and most liked photos will win.
**Mind though that Facebook "like" system is very vulnerable to fraud and cheating (this is something you may have noticed if you were doing Facebook advertising).
For example, you can get your clients share:
  • Favorite quotes
  • Best tip to use your products
  • Their plans for the future holiday, you name it!

And now the cheatsheet:

Required: Not allowed:
On a business page On a personal profile
Require users to share anything...
On your business page (e.g. They may be required to comment on or like your PAGE update to enter) On their personal profiles (e.g. You may not require participants to share your update / photo on their personal profiles to enter)
State in the rules...
...Requirements to enter, prize details, picking the winner process, non-affiliation with Facebook ... That they must like your page to enter
You can also download it here to be able to take it with you! Make sure you know the rules to avoid being banned on social media!
Facebook contests are cool for engaging your clients. With Facebook officially allowing brands to run contests on their business pages, the whole process has become much easier. Mind your rules and get creative!

Featured images:
  •  License: Image author owned 
Michelle Fach is the self-improvement blogger, social media enthusiast and

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