Facebook has always been pretty strict about how contests and promotions on Facebook business pages should be run. Just recently, however, Facebook decided to drop some of those rules—particularly the one where promotions can only be run on apps specified by Facebook—and make running contests easier without the risk of being banned.
Still, there are subtle aspects of the recent Facebook update to promotion guidelines that Facebook business page owners should be careful about, particularly those that concern sharing contests and promotions.
New rule on sharing contests and promotions
Before the recent update, page owners, while prohibited from requiring users to share their promotion, can drum up some interest in sharing contests and promotions by giving incentives or rewards, such as better odds of winning. In essence, you can reward fans for sharing promotions and contests on their own Timelines.
That, however, is no longer allowed. Check out Facebook’s page terms, and you will see that “Personal Timelines must not be used to administer promotions”. If you make the mistake of saying something like ‘share on your Timeline to join’ or ‘share on your friend’s Timeline to get more entries’, you are setting yourself up for a ban.
Don’t reward fans for sharing promotions and contests
Facebook does not necessarily prohibit you from encouraging sharing contests and promotions among your fans. What it does not want you to do is reward fans for sharing contests and promotions, or making sharing a requirement to join. Both are clear violations of Facebook guidelines for promotions, and if you get caught doing these when sharing contests and promotions, don’t be surprised if you wake up one day to see all the hard work you have poured into your Facebook business page go for naught.