Facebook Rule Breakers Part 2 – Facebook Competitions

Today we’re looking at Facebook competitions.  I know that many businesses aren’t aware of the rules that are in Facebook’s T&C’s, but some are. I can say this with conviction as I’ve made several companies aware they’re breaking the rules and I’ve even informed them of the consequences, but still they persist.

When running a “legal” competition, you need to use the services of a 3rd party app, or host it elsewhere, such as your website. Simply saying “Like this post to be entered into a competition to win this prize” isn’t allowed. You also can’t ask people to share a post and when you reach 500 likes you’ll pick a winner at random. In short, you can’t use a function of Facebook as entry – post Likes, shares and comments are all classed as functions of Facebook.

Running an “illegal” competition could result in you having your Page shutdown with no warning and no chance of appeal. Having said this, many companies seem to get away with it – but is it worth the risk?

What I dislike most about companies breaking the rules is that it makes it so much harder for us who choose to follow the rules we agreed to when we signed up. You see, Liking a page to enter a competition is really easy – it’s quick and I don’t need to give you my email address, so no risk of the dreaded spam. If I enter a Facebook competition that’s being run correctly, I may need to answer a questions and I’ll definitely need to give you my contact details – otherwise how will you tell me I’ve won? Many entrants don’t understand the rules – and why would they – seriously, who reads the T&C’s? So when they’re asked for their email address, instead of just clicking on Like, it can put people off. Wouldn’t it be better if we all stuck to the rules and then everyone in Facebook Land would know what to expect

So, what do we do about it? Well we could ignore it and let Facebook find out in their own sweet time, or we could be a little more pro-active…  How about this? Next time you see an “illegal” Facebook competition, why not tell the Page owner that it’s against Facebook rules? It’s polite, and it’s helpful – I think. If they persist – and you often see the same companies running competition after competition, why not consider reporting it? The quicker everyone plays by the rules, the quicker we will have a level playing field. I know it’s controversial, so I’m going to leave you to make up your own mind, but I do think it needs your consideration. If you choose to report them, this is where you need to go to Facebook Help Centre

If you’d like to run your own Facebook competition, here are a couple of 3rd party apps you could take alook at

Offerpop

Shortstack

What are your thoughts on this? Please share them below…

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