Facebook Contests for Businesses: How to Choose a Prize That Gets Quality Likes

Chase Roberts posted this in
Social Media
on August 15th, 2013

“We can give away an iPad!”

If that’s your first thought when you’re brainstorming for a Facebook contest prize, please stop and think for a second (or read this article, whichever).

While an iPad giveaway might get you likes and traffic, it won’t get you what you really need: quality likes and traffic (I.E., likes and traffic that are from people who are actually part of your target audience).

So how do you choose the perfect Facebook prize that gets you those quality likes and traffic?

It’s simple: choose a prize that overlaps with what your customers want and that’s also relevant to your business. Here’s a visual way to think about it:

To help you show what a good facebook prize would look like, let’s break down this diagram to show you the pitfalls of trying to choose one of these things without the other.

Prizes your target audience want but aren’t relevant to your business

Here’s your typical iPad prize. Lots of people love it, but if your business has nothing to do with tablets or apps, you’re not going to be socially engaging with the right people…which is the point of social media.

Think about it like this: What’s the point of gathering thousands of likes from a contest if:

  • The people who enter your contest to get the iPad aren’t a part of your target audience?
  • Your business is local but people who don’t even live in your state or country can enter to win?

Let’s slap a freshly baked example in here: Let’s say you own a bakery, and you’re running a Facebook prize campaign where the prize is a free iPhone 5.

You’re pumped because you get 1,000 likes from the campaign. However you have NO idea who of those that liked your page actually enjoy the goods you offer. So they’re like empty calories, lots of numbers with no substance behind them.

What you need is a prize that’s relevant to your business. However, let’s not go overboard and use…

Prizes relevant to your business but not your target audience

This is what you call the “Who Cares?” prize. Sure a gift card for one of your services is relevant, but if it’s a $25 dollar gift card and the service costs $1000, then it’s not going to be worth their time.

It needs to be big enough to be worth people’s time, but small enough to not break the bank. It’s a balancing act.

Example of a perfect Facebook contest prize

Rocket Media created a Facebook campaign for a heating and cooling company called Coolray. Without getting into too much detail here’s the prize we chose.

The prize: A Nest thermostat.

For those that don’t know, the Nest is what they call a “smart” thermostat. It learns from your temperature setting habits and then programs itself for you so that you don’t have to mess with it—saving up about $173 a year. It has a ton of other neat features as well.

Let’s look at all the factors that made this a perfect prize for Coolray.

First of all, people want it because:

  • It’s sexy. It was created by former Apple employees, plus it’s sold at the Apple store. And anything Apple has a sort of sex appeal right now.
  • The Nest thermostat helps people save money by lowering their utility bills.
  • It’s valuable. The Nest costs $249 (plus installation) so it’s something people couldn’t just buy with pocket change.

It’s relevant to Coolray because:

  • It relates to their core business - heating and cooling your home.
  • The contest will give them a pool of people interested in the Nest (which they sell).

The results speak for themselves:

  • Fans increased from 1,311 to 2235 (a 70% increase).
  • Entries into the contest: 261 (this was a complicated contest, so this is a pretty high number).
  • 129 of those entries asked to sign up for the newsletter.

As you can see, people didn’t want to just to get the prize—they wanted to do business and interact with this company on a long-term basis. And that’s worth more than just getting an empty calorie “like”.

What Facebook contest prizes have you used for your business? Were they things that were both relevant to your business and something people actually wanted? Let us know on Facebook!

Chase Roberts

Web Copywriter

Yes, ladies, that southern drawl is authentic. Chase hails from a small town in Alabama. He loves sweet tea and all the bacon. But, in between consumption of these favorite treats, he plans and writes the copy for Rocket Media’s clients.