New Rules for Facebook Promotions and What They Mean for You and Your Company

Laurel Simon | @mslaurelsimon Facebook changes things virtually every week. Some changes are small and are barely a blip on the radar screen. Others are a 10 on the Richter scale (remember when Timeline was introduced?).  A major change was announced recently when Facebook altered their rules on how you can run a contest/promo/giveaway/draw. This one is big…really big.

In the past, Facebook required page owners to use a Third party app to run contests. Third party apps are developed by companies such as Short Stack ( and enable you to customize your Facebook page.  These apps are not just limited to contests but also include custom forms, gated contests, videos and a whole lot more. However, if you wanted to run a simple contest, this meant that you had to spend some time researching your third party options, figuring out how to run it within the guidelines, and there was at a fee attached.

On Aug 27, Facebook announced that promotions can now be administered on Page Timelines OR through apps. This is especially good news for small businesses whose time and budgets are limited, but none-the-less, need to run these promos to build their business.  You can now run promos and collect entries through likes, comments or messages! Of course there are still guidelines and rules to adhere to and this is only for business pages, not for personal timelines.

This quick and easy method makes it very easy to increase engagement, get more likes, and reward your Facebook community. Here is an example of the new way you can run a contest on timeline:


Nice, huh? Now you can run contests such as:

  • Caption this photo
  • Like to win
  • Comment to win
  • Caption or Fill in the blank to win
  • Photo contest

This doesn’t mean that apps have gone by the wayside. On the contrary, they are a great way to run contests for large fan bases, and can enable you to gather email address at the same time. It just means that now you have a choice. This Infographic gives a nice overview of the pros and cons and how to decide which method will be the best option for you:


The Facebook community made its needs heard; thankfully, Facebook listened and rewarded us with an easy method and additional choice for running promotions. If you'd like to see how Social Media Delivered can help you with contest and all things social media, please give us a call at (469) 248-0616.

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