Facebook contests are a great way to create excitement around your product. They give you the opportunity to connect with both new and already established audiences, as well as to increase engagement on your page.
While they have the potential to yield great results and big increases in activity on your page, Facebook contests have been regarded as more work than they’re worth in the past.
This doesn’t have to be the case anymore. Fortunately, with Facebook’s growing popularity and the increased activity of both users and marketers, different companies have developed a wide variety of apps that make hosting contests easier and more effective than before.
Why Facebook Contest Apps Make Your Job Easier
Instead of spending time struggling to adjust settings and tabs on your page, and then struggling to create a landing page to collect the information of those entering, apps take care of everything for you.
While you now have the opportunity to run contests on your actual timeline as well through a series of posts, app usage is often recommended for the most beneficial Facebook contests overall.
Though you can launch contests on your timeline quickly and freely, and fans can often enter with likes or comments, more long term benefits tend to come from contests utilizing apps. This is especially now that Facebook is making efforts to do away with like–gating.
Using apps make it easy for excited users to enter. They don’t have to go through your old posts to find the one they need to interact with, because it will be a separate tab on your page. Having a single page for your contest makes it easier for users to share with their friends, giving your Facebook contest the viral momentum everyone aims for.
Having an actual page for users to enter your contest will look professional, clean, and can show off your brand. There’s also an appropriate place for contest rules if need be.
One of the most important benefits you get by using a third party app for Facebook contests is that it generates real leads, with full names and e-mail addresses. These will be leads you can nurture into clients and sales, making the investment of your contest worthwhile. Timeline contests often don’t get personal information; few people are willing to leave their e-mail, home address, and/or phone number in a comment for everyone to see. This benefit alone makes paying for app to run your contest on Facebook worth it.
Best Apps to Choose From
There can a lot of apps out there to choose from, and because of that, we compiled a list of our top 5.
Wishpond is currently most popular choice in apps for marketers on social media, and with good reason. With big name companies like NPR and Avon utilizing Wishpond’s social media apps, it isn’t a surprise their product is nothing short of outstanding.
Wishpond offers a wide variety of contests that you can choose from, including—but definitely not limited to—vote contests, photo caption contests, essay contests, and coupons.
They offer a variety of features, including real time reporting and easy moderation over posts. They also have incredible mobile friendly pages that come with each contest you create. As far as Facebook contest apps go, Wishpond’s could easily be the best.
Pricing is extremely affordable, the basic plan starting at $45 per month with a 14 day free trial to let you see if it is the right fit for you.
Facebook contests and promotions are just a small area of expertise for Shortstack, who boasts all types of successful campaigns on social media. Like Wishpond, they offer a ton of different contests you can run, giving you a lot of options.
Their Facebook contest app is known for successfully implementing action-gating, which is collecting priceless information like customers’ email addresses, birthdays, and more. Since this is one of the biggest reasons to use a Facebook contest app, this factor alone makes them rank highly on our contest app list.
With Shortstack, you can manage your contests easily. You can set entry restrictions, reduce voting fraud, and select winners (and more) at random all through their platform. They help you make your pages mobile friendly. Their list of features is truly impressive.
Not only do their contests both run and look great, their support is fantastic. If you need any help creating or managing your campaigns, a member of their staff will get to you quickly.
Shortstack offers incredibly competitive pricing, their basic package starting at only $29 per month and providing unlimited campaigns. You can create a few free campaigns to test out their system.
Agora pulse focuses on Facebook apps that will generate activity and engagement on your page. If you only looking for an app for contests and quizzes (and not added features landing pages, for example), agora pulse could be for you.
They offer 15 stunning templates that you can customize to take your campaign to the next level. Their features include boosting the viral potential of your contest, easy implementation of multiple languages, the ability to quickly identify (and disqualify) cheaters, and easy exports for all the information you collected with your entry forms.
As your campaign progresses, you can monitor its success. As your campaign progresses, agora pulse will even give you information like when is the best time to post on Facebook in order to reach your fans. You can also compare your page’s campaigns to those of your competitors. With the information available, you can quickly see what works and what doesn’t in order to improve your campaigns in the future.
Their basic plan is $29 per month and includes access to unlimited apps.
WooBox is designed to help you easily create powerful contests, creating a sweepstakes tab on your Facebook page. The templates for these promotions are premade to satisfy all of Facebook’s policies, so you don’t have to double-check everything you are doing as you create the contest.
They help you set up your entire contest, not just display it on Facebook; you can set up your contest so that it has an age restriction, one-per-customer restrictions, and translations into different languages available. The forms are all completely customizable, meaning you can get as much information as you want for lead generation. Their contests all come with mobile friendly sites, too.
WooBox has a variety of pricing plans. Per month plans start at $49 per month, and you can try it for free before you pay to get started.
Tips To Make Your Facebook Contest Successful
While apps make your Facebook contests look professional and can add to the excitement, all types of Facebook contests are valid and can generate great results depending on what you’re looking for.
These tips will work for all types of Facebook contests, helping each one reach its maximum potential.
Pick a Prize that Matters: You’re not going to enter a contest for a prize that you don’t even care about winning, so why would anyone else? When you’re picking a prize, it needs to be something of value to those you want to enter. If a car dealership’s big giveaway was an ice cream cone, that might be underwhelming, but if a local ice cream parlor was giving away an ice cream cone users would likely be enthusiastic about entering.
Promote your products: You’re trying to attract or reconnect with people who would be interested in your product. Using your product—or something relevant—in a sweepstakes or giveaway gives you the chance to have users get excited about your product in particular.
Use promoted posts: You can pay to promote posts through Facebook’s ad system, and it lets you target both audiences that you’ve connected with and those that you haven’t. Promoted posts allows you to make sure your contest is getting the kind of reach you want, and can help increase your page likes and contest engagement.
Be optimized for mobile users: Mobile usage surpassed desktop usage earlier this year. By having your contest not optimized for mobile users, you run the risk of losing a lot of potential entrees and leads. A lot of apps even make sure that your site is mobile ready for you, so take advantage of that if they do.
Create a sense of urgency: If you want someone to act, you need to give them a reason to, and time can always be a great motivating factor. You don’t want to have your contest over so fast that no one realizes that it’s happening, but having a contest last for a short period of time will encourage users to act now before it’s too late (or, more likely, they forget).
Promote your contest cross-platform: When you’re investing time and money into a Facebook contest, make sure everyone knows about it—even those you may not be connected with on Facebook yet. Mention the contest in your newsletter, on your YouTube channel, on your Twitter page, on your Instagram, and on your website. If you operate out of a brick-and-mortar store, mention it there, too. Talk about it everywhere to get as many people entering and giving you their information as possible.
Remind your fans it’s there: You don’t need to be reminding your fans that you have a Facebook contest every two minutes, but reminding them more than once over the duration of the contest is important. Organic reach has declined on Facebook, meaning less people are seeing what you post to your timeline. Posting at different times every so often, and definitely on the last day, can help everyone see and remember to enter your contest.