facebook terms of service

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?