I am going to hold my hands up straight away and say that rules, they are boring. I also don't read instructions unless it gets to the point I actually HAVE to, which to me, is almost like giving in. I am known to bend rules as far as I can without breaking them unless it is a matter of safety and security but some rules, they are there for a reason and I wanted to share with you some tips and reasons behind WHY Facebook has some serious competition rules.

Facebook has a STRINGENT set of competition rules which you can find here >>

Have they written them to annoy you? Have they done it to stop you growing your business? Are they just trying to make money out of you? The FIRM answer to all of those questions is no. It is simply about FAIR competition and we all understand what fair means.

Lets put it another way.. if you entered a raffle for £10000 and you had a 50/50 chance of your entry being written in invisible ink, so they couldn't contact you to tell you that you had won, would you enter? If you entered the same raffle and knew that you had a 50/50 chance that your entry would be thrown in the bin would you bother entering? It seems quite simple but actually, the reason that Facebook has these guidelines is for that very reason.

Peoples Privacy settings mean that you can't see everyone that has tagged people, you can't see if they have shared your awesome competition post. THAT is why it is not allowed. People are allowed their privacy but in the rules of competition, it HAS to be a level playing field. Therefore you CANNOT ask people to share your post for an entry into a competition unless you are asking them to share it to their business page, which is public. You cannot ask people to tag their friends for the very same reason, I actually have the setting that I review ALL tags and I accept some and not others. Does that make me less worthy of a competition entry? No it doesn't.

So, what are the rules..

"Administration of a promotion

Promotions may be administered on Pages, groups, events or within apps on Facebook. Personal timelines and friend connections must not be used to administer promotions (e.g. "share on your timeline to enter" or "share on your friend's timeline to get additional entries" and "tag your friends in this post to enter" are not permitted)."


"Required content

Promotions on Facebook must include the following:

A complete release of Facebook by each entrant or participant; and

Acknowledgement that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed, administered by or associated with Facebook."

I know exactly what you are going to say, but everyone does it. A lot, yes, but not all and this is where I go back to safety and security. It's not harmful for me or anyone else to break those rules BUT it could harm my business page, it could harm my profile if it was to be reported and removed. The gambling commission also routinely scour social media for non compliant competitions to get them removed where they do not comply with correct licensing laws. The last 8 weeks have seen a huge amount of accounts removed, ad accounts paused whilst under review and various bans for infractions. Some justified but plenty have not been.

How can you get around it? It's fairly simply to be honest, comply with the guidelines, ask people to leave a comment on the competition post, it might be a sentence about the product or service that you are offering as a prize. DO NOT use the word share, "It's not a competition rule but we'd love it if you told (NOT SHARED) others about our great competition". Get creative with your wording but be very clear and stick to the guidelines.

Food for thought....


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