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Facebook: Changes to Promotion Guidelines
30 August 2013

Promotion Guidelines

This week, Facebook has made changes to its Promotion Guidelines. Changes that now make it easier for companies to administer promotions on Facebook.

The social giant’s recent blog post reveals that third-party services are no longer needed to run contests and promotions. Now, you can run promotions on your Page’s Timeline by simply asking fans to Comment on or Like a post. This news brings a sigh of relief to some Page managers, as the update is designed to make it easier for businesses of all sizes to create and administer promotions on Facebook.

Up until now, brands could only host promotions and contests on a dedicated tab through third-party apps. Running promotions on the Page Timeline, using Facebook features or functions as a "voting" mechanism or entry into a contest - and notifying winners through Facebook - were all against its Promotions Guidelines. 

Timeline Promotions: The New Rules

Although the app requirement has been removed, there are still a few rules to follow:

Now, promotions may be administered on Page Timelines and in apps on Facebook. For example, businesses can:

  • Collect entries by having users post on the Page or comment/like a Page post
  • Collect entries by having users message the Page
  • Utilize likes as a voting mechanism

However, as before, businesses cannot administer promotions on personal Timelines.

Stricter Rules on Tagging

Facebook's update also includes stricter regulations on tagging. Pages Terms now prohibit Pages from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content that they are not actually depicted in. So, for instance:

  • It’s OK to ask people to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize
  • It’s not OK to ask people tag themselves in pictures of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize

But are These Changes Better?

While the changes will suit some Brand Pages, it doesn't necessarily point to a more effective way to run Promotions. Running Promotions on a Page Timeline is ideal in engaging with your current Facebook fans with minimum cost and ease of entry, yet using a third-party App can easily increase a fan base, while helping to gather useful data for future communications. 

Both options have advantages and disadvantages that all Page administrators should consider - and these will be explored in our next post.

In the meantime why not check out the full updated Pages Terms?