facebook promotions

Facebook Promotional Guidelines: Are you breaking the rules?

By Social Media

In our business, if you care about your clients — really care about them– you don’t lead them down a primrose path. You don’t tell them it will be OK to do something even if “everyone else” is doing it. You don’t encourage them to break rules or laws; you don’t ask them to look the other way while you do so on their behalf. Facebook has very specific guidelines about promotions and contests. They are explicit. They do not want the liability of being in the middle of a contest, promotion or other rewards system. If you’re confused about what Facebook promotions are, read this page thoroughly: https://www.facebook.com/page_guidelines.php

Let me quote:

iv.    You must not use Facebook features or functionality as a promotion’s registration or entry mechanism. For example, the act of liking a Page or checking in to a Place cannot automatically register or enter a promotion participant.

Over and over again we see violations of this guideline.

What does Facebook say?

We reserve the right to reject or remove Pages for any reason. These terms are subject to change at any time.

That’s right. They can reject or remove Pages at any time, for any reason. Do you really want to be the consultant whose client pages are taken down due to an infraction?


WTF? Friday: Four Facebook Mistakes Businesses Make

By Communications

WTF FridayFacebook has some pretty stringent guidelines for promotions. Lots of businesses, however, pretend these guidelines don’t exist. I think this is tantamount to sticking your tongue out at Facebook and going “nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, NAH!”

One of these days, Zuckerberg is gonna get pissed and y’all are going to wake up to banned accounts and disabled “official” pages. Frankly, I don’t blame Facebook one whit if they decide to enforce the rules on the platform they built, own and LET YOU USE FOR FREE.

There are five actions businesses take on a regular basis that are in direct violation of the rules. They are today’s WTF? Friday feature . . .

  1. Making a user “like” a page to get something in return, such as a promotional item, contest entry, etc. Seattle’s Best Coffee is a major brand doing just that right now:   “Like us! Do it! You’ll get $1.50 off a four-pack now!” Uh, no.
  2. Having a profile instead of a page, as this business, Fine Living Lancaster has done. Don’t “friend” a business and if you have a business and have created a second profile (your own, as a person and one for the business) you have violated Facebook’s Terms of Service. Whoops.
  3. Here’s a dental practice telling you that you’ll have a chance to win an iPad if you like their Facebook page. That’s TOTALLY against the rules, but not only that, has only earned them a little over 200 fans. Worth it? Especially since they run the risk of having their page shut down? Probably not.
  4. Another really common no-no – the photo contest run without a third party. You can’t ask users to upload photos for a photo contest that takes place within Facebook. See #4 of the Promotions Guidelines.

If you’re a marketer, what do you think? Should businesses with a marketing presence know better? If Facebook does crack down and disable accounts like the ones above, who should be held accountable for that?

Facebook Business Page Boot Camp

By Communications

The last few weeks have had me teaching members of the business community in workshops and internal meetings how to use social media and specifically social networking as a method of building business relationships.

What has emerged most frequently is a demand for education and help with creating Facebook pages for business — and then, a plan and assistance with what to do with the page once it exists.

This need has led me to develop Facebook Business Boot Camp, a workshop for businesses who are new to Facebook, who need to learn about the platform and marketing uses from the ground up. Facebook has very specific guidelines for how businesses can offer promotions, run contests and communicate with fans. It’s important to understand these, and be in compliance as well as taking advantage of the potential to reach millions with your message on a site that attracts users for hours every week.

The first workshop will be May 5, 9am to 11am in Charlottesville.

Register today!