I’ve compiled a list of 19 Facebook Contest ideas. Not every one is right for every business. Facebook Marketing helps businesses grow socially.
If you use an idea, please leave a comment with your contest results. Please make sure to follow Facebook Contest Guidelines.
1. Tie your contest into current events
Clothing company PLNDR gave a unique twist to the NCAA. Instead of basketball teams facing off against each other, they had brands submit T-shirt designs and let them battle on Facebook. The designer with the most “likes” moved to the next round. As a result, PLNDR’s Facebook page grew 800 percent.
TimetoPlayMag.com tied their contest into a holiday with a virtual Easter Egg hunt. They hid five Easter eggs on their website each day, for a total of 15 days. The first player to find an egg and click on it won a $20 Toys”R”Us gift card. All of the clues and hints to find the eggs were posted on Facebook—smart way to drive people to your site!
2. Run a photo contest
During the summer, pizza company Fresh Brothers runs contests using their mascot, the Slice (a giant slice of pizza). They tell fans where and when Slice will be at events, and if they snap a picture with the Slice and post it, they get a gift certificate as a thank you.
Wine website Snooth.com created a Facebook landing page on their Fan page using the Wildfire app—Facebook guidelines say brands should run contests like this through an app. To promote one of their Australian brand wines, they asked people to submit pictures of people showing their Australian pride. Fans posted pictures of themselves enjoying the wine and using the Australian recipes from their website. People voted on the photos, driving new exposure, and as a result, traffic continued even after the contest ended.
3. Play simple guessing games with your fans
PR firm Sammis & Ochoa runs promotions for two restaurants in Texas. The contests run every Friday at 4 p.m. CDT, which gives them a chance to prep and tell others. “When we run late, we hear about it,” says CEO Mario Ochoa.
Other game examples:
• A Word Jumble of a local landmark.
• Post a picture for people to guess where it was taken.
• Guess how many almonds are in the cup.
• Ask a weekly question then randomly choose a fan to reward with a prize.
4. Ask fans to share their best tips
Hiatus Spa is running a “Be Green and Be Good; Earth Month 2011” Contest. They asked fans to share tips on how to use less resources through this Web page. The tip with the most unique comments and “likes” wins three Hiatus Spa services. “The great thing is that this has really been fun—and people are sharing wonderful, useful information,” said Jordan Harbinger who helped run the contest.
5. Collect your fan’s favorite quotes
This is simple and can be applied to just about any business. Laura Ann Allahverdi is a Personal Life Coach who asked her fans to submit their favorite quotes. The person who got the most likes on their quote got a free session with Laura. She loved how people filled her Wall with inspirational posts—and fans got their friends involved in the contest, increasing her exposure to new networks.
6. Name the local celebrity game
Maia Yogurt said one of their most successful contests was a “local celebrity ID” game. They posted a picture of a local “celebrity”—they chose a popular and well-known independent grocery store owner so it helped garner some good will with the people they hoped to contact—and asked their Facebook fans to guess the person’s name to win a free MAIA T-shirt.
7. Reward “likes”
Again, you must be careful how you do this to fall within Facebook guidelines, but there are many ways to reward people for becoming fans. Snack and Munch ships boxes of snacks to hungry office workers and college students so they’re ready for the munchies. To enter their contest, they ask people to “like” their page. They choose a weekly winner who gets a free box of 24 snacks. In the process, they get great feedback about their product.
8. Website treasure hunt: Post a question on your facebook page, and then provide hints throughout your website.
This encourages fans to both visit your website in depth, but also to engage on your facebook page. Do not make it too difficult, and be sure that there is a decent prize for the winner, or winners.
9. “Tag”!: Create a folder in your photo gallery on your facebook page, then once a week (or so) add an individual picture of one of your products. Ask your fans to “Tag” their name to that product picture to enter the drawing to win that prize.
10. “Like” Raffle: An incredibly simple campaign to run. Simply ask fans, “’Like’ this comment to enter into the raffle for a free giveaway of X. Contest ends tomorrow at 5 pm!”. Once the time runs out, randomly pick your winner(s).
Best Suggestion: Get great market research, and free advertising by asking fans to suggest product ideas for your company. Offer a prize for your favorite idea, or to the author of the idea who gets the most “likes”.
Submit your picture: Have your fans upload pictures of them with your product. Choose winners based on different categories like most artistic/funny/unique/etc.
11. “_____ is my favorite!” Drawing: Contestants are to leave a comment saying what service of yours they like the best to enter. Winners will be drawn after X amount of participants, or after a certain period of time. This gives you activity on your page, as well as forces your users to tell their friends about your products.
12. Guess The Product: Tell the users that the first 3 people to guess the code word will get a prize. Heres the hint: the code word is on your website, as one of your services. This will encourage users to visit your website, and more importantly, look at the services you provide.
13. Rally Together: This is more complicated, and would require a larger prize, as well as a larger fan following. The object for the users is to ‘Vote’ for the winner, this is measured by “likes”. You post a comment saying to add your name as a comment to this post, then tell your friends to “like” your comment. Whoever has the most amount of “likes” will win. In the event of a tie, you can choose to give away multiple prizes, or have a tie breaker round. The advantage of this campaign, when successfull, you will get a tremendous amount of viral attention as users will promote your page to their friends for you.
14. I Spy: Take a photo of one of your products, but REALLY, REALLY zoom in on it. The first person who can guess what it is, wins!
15. Pick a Number: It may seem simple, but the easier a contest, the more likely people will play. Tell users they can only guess once, and it needs to be comments on the contest comment; then have users guess on your page the winning number.
16. Best Photo Caption: Post a photo of your new product and have users come up with a great caption for the product. For voting, either make the winner the person who gets the most ‘likes’ or simply pick it yourself.
17. Trivia Tuesday!: Create a special reoccuring day to encourage fans to come back to your page. For example, make a “Trivia Tuesday” and put a list of 20 questions, then ask users to email the list of answers. This can also help you establish a larger newsletter mailing list. The users who get the most right answers, get to be in a drawing for a prize.
18. Why do you deserve _____?: Ask fans to post a short response as to why they deserve the product/prize. This method opens up your fan base to strongly desire your products, and if you get lucky you can get some really interesting posts that can lead to some viral activity.
19. A day in the life of….: This is a video game for your employees, where each one that you choose can make a 3-5 minute long video where they highlight what they do for your company. Upload the videos to your facebook page, and tell your fans to vote on their favorite, and that they winning employee will get a prize. It is a great way to introduce your company on a more intimate level with your fanbase, as well as treat your staff.
Help grow this list. Keep adding ideas.
Note: one of the apps mentioned is Wildfire. There is also another app called North Social
I found some of these on OpenForum by American Express and compiled others randomly.