How To Run A Viral Facebook Contest: 7 Steps

Despite marketers’ best efforts, many Facebook contests wind up in violation of Facebook’s promotion guidelines or with pricey prizes being given away for little in the way of likes or other return.

My experience in assisting several companies in developing Facebook competitions over the years has taught me a thing or two. Plan, monitor, and follow up on your social media marketing efforts, just as you would with any other campaign. Without further ado, I provide the seven most important things to keep in mind while creating a Facebook marketing strategy for a business.

1. To begin, decide on a target and financial constraints.

It’s time to go back to the drawing board if you’re running a Facebook promotion “just for fun” or because all of your rivals are doing the same thing. Your contest ought to help you reach a business objective. Want to connect with like-minded followers? Do you seek to boost client participation in social media? Boost revenue? The first step in developing a budget is deciding on a goal that adds to the larger business plan, followed by determining how much that objective is worth to you.

Imagine you want to increase your number of page likes, and that $5 is the value you place on each one. If the cost of the prize is $100, you’ll need 20 new likes to break even. The costs of setting up your contest should be included in with those of your Facebook App (more on that below) and any Facebook advertising you want to run in support of your contest.

It’s more crucial that you have a goal and that you can readily quantify the success of your contest than it is how much that objective is actually worth to your organisation.

2. Make a contest app that is easy to use and spread the word.

A Facebook contest must be housed in an application (for more information, see Facebook’s Pages conditions). No matter what you decide, the final contest should be simple enough for people to enter on their own and exciting enough to warrant spreading the word.

3. The third tip is to make sure mobile users may participate in your Facebook contest.

In light of the fact that an increasing number of Facebook users are now accessing the site via their mobile devices, it would be a huge mistake to have a competition on Facebook that is inaccessible to anyone using anything other than a desktop computer. Ensure that your Facebook material is available to all users by hosting your contest on a Facebook page that can be viewed from mobile devices. If your app doesn’t render properly on mobile devices, you might lose all of your mobile users and upset your mobile fan base.

4. Maintain a steady stream of Facebook updates promoting the contest.

There will be no winners in your Facebook contest if no one knows about it. If you post at least twice or three times a week, you can ensure that your followers and their friends will see the contest announcements. You may encourage more people to enter your contest by providing photographs of the prize and describing what you can do with it, asking users to participate, and including additional calls to action. In addition, you may alter your cover photo in order to direct people to your competition. Recently, Facebook modified its policies to let users to post “calls to action” in their profile pictures.

5. Publicize the contest using social media, email, and paid advertising.

Hosting a contest on Facebook doesn’t imply that’s the only place you should advertise it. Promote the Facebook contest by including details in email newsletters and adding links and banners to your website. With other social media tools, you may generate interest in a variety of places. If you’re running a contest, it’s possible that the winner isn’t already a fan of your Facebook page but becomes one after reading the announcement of the contest on Twitter and deciding to interact with you there as well. Facebook ads have been really effective for competitions I’ve run, but it’s important to make sure they’re reaching the correct people (don’t advertise to Italians if the prize is only available in the United States, for example) and to experiment with different ad types to find the most effective one.

6. Gratitude 6: Congratulate the victor

When the competition has ended, it’s important to convey the sense of fulfilment it inspired in the entrants and the winners. Take a picture of the winner and share it on your timeline, for instance. (But remember that per Facebook’s Program Rules, you can’t use Facebook to inform a winner). It’s a good idea to follow up with the contest’s victor or a few other participants to get their thoughts on the event, which can be included into future Facebook posts and perhaps another contest.

7. Think critically and gain insight

After completing the above steps, you may officially call yourself a “number nerd.” Evaluate the contest’s success in helping achieve the business goals you set in Step 1. See how many people saw your contest, how many new likes you got, how far your post reached, and more with Facebook Insights. Have a firm grasp on the factors that pushed your competition over the top, and consider how you may improve things for the next time around. The next step is to begin organising the next Facebook competition.