Using Facebook Likes To Enter A Contest Is Now Allowed

, Using Facebook Likes To Enter A Contest Is Now Allowed,

Welcome to the latest installment of “Facebook Changes” as we catalogue the marketing dips and shifts of the most popular social network in the world.

With a greater push for mobile and more real-time content, Facebook just updated its Page Terms to allow pages to run contests in the news feed without a third party application.

This is a big change. Promotions on Facebook previously needed to be administered within Canvas Pages or a Page Apps on It was in fact one of the more concrete rules on the platform.

But, now you can run them right on any page Timeline, and thus the news feed.

For example, businesses can now:

Collect entries by having users post a comment
Collect entries by having users like a particular Page post (say, for a random giveaway)
Utilize likes as a voting mechanism (vote for your favorite photo/slogan/name/player)
Collect entries by having users message the Page

The below example from EA Sports shows how many pages were already conducting these types of news feed contests despite it being against the Facebook Page terms of service.

In fact, there is an entire Tumblr blog dedicated to capturing these rule breakers: Facebook Rule Breakers Tumblr.

This changes allows almost all of these types of contests. Asking for shares is still against the Facebook page TOS.

From the Facebook blog:

“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. As before, however, businesses cannot administer promotions on personal Timelines. Accurate tagging is required in promotions.

In order to maintain the accuracy of Page content, our Pages Terms now prohibit Pages from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content that they are not actually depicted in.”

Breaking it down further they continue:

It’s OK to ask people to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize
It’s not OK to ask people tag themselves in pictures of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize

So what does this mean for page owners?
Initially I thought that this marked the end of Facebook Apps. Then I thought again. Facebook Apps are still a really great way to collect leads and build customer lists. Sure you can do a contest on your wall so that it gets picked up more in the NewsFeed, but then it makes it significantly more difficult to track those leads for anything.

Facebook apps will still be a powerful tool. But pages now have a more public option for integrating fan engagement into any contest or promotion, without fear of running afoul Facebook’s guidelines.

Will you be using these new options in your next campaign or promotion?