Being the Buzz : Facebook Contest Ideas to Explore

Sunanda Pati
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Any time of the day you'd agree that something free, fun and, not to forget, exciting is always welcome. Create a contest, give out a freebie and your business won't just earn smiling faces but also loyal hearts. That's the power of engagement when linked intrinsically with rewards. And on a social platform like Facebook, it's an easy thing to do.

Just follow the rules and you're good to go. But the big question keeps swirling around ideas. What kind of game plan should you have? What prizes should you feature to maximize engagement? Here we look at factors that can give your Facebook contests ideas and giveaways a much needed boost.

It's all about recall

If a contest or giveaway does not help in brand recall, then there's little point in creating one. The contest or giveaway in question should look every bit like the brand behind it and interact the way the brand does with the world. Now on to a quick example.

Take Budweiser India's 2012 Facebook contest Budstation. A simple contest that promised plenty to fans – there were weekly and monthly prizes like pen drives, gym bags, poker sets, soccer kits and electric guitar. The big one of course was the chance to win a trip to Las Vegas with two friends of your choice.

One could enter the contest through an easy-to-use app and navigate through rules and to-dos without hassle. A campaign launched mainly to garner more 'likes', Budstation screamed brand Budweiser all the way. It was perfectly aligned with the beer brand's spirit of fun, togetherness and sharing. So fans were invited to share good times they had had with loved ones – and every share meant more points!

Budweiser budstation

It's all about relevance

A contest or giveaway is as good as the relevance it holds with the brand it's backing. Take the example of a travel company that launches a contest or giveaway on Facebook successfully only to give away some expensive piece of jewelry as the big prize. Would that be very relevant? Now consider the same travel company running a contest or giveaway and offering a trip to Malaysia as prize. Sounds closer to perfection?

A good example to cite here would be the Indian Makeup and Beauty Blog's '5 Lakh Facebook Fans' giveaway. Considered to be India's biggest women's community around fitness, fashion, makeup and beauty, IMBB featured relevant giveaways like Amrapali jewelry, Chanel lipstick and Steve Madden bag. And all you needed to do was 'like' and 'share' this photo:


It's all about engagement

Contests and giveaways need not always be 'like' oriented. You could have a greater goal in mind. For example, you could be backing a newly launched publishing house. And you may decide to run a contest just to find the Chief Editor or a couple of key management personnel. Just like Facebook did in 2009 with its India Developer Contest. It was meant to be an active platform that would help Indian developers showcase their web development talents.

All that one needed to do to enter the contest was create a Facebook platform application that could be used on the Facebook site. But for all the while it ran, the contest had developers engaging on an everyday basis. Facebook's India Developer had a run time of three months with $4000 as first prize, $2000 as second and $1000 as third.

Contests and giveaways are happy ways of creating buzz around your brand. And if you do them well, your brand could have a chance to be under the spotlight. So, 'now' is really the time to take your shot at them.

India Developer

Budweiser Facebook Contest contest ideas engagement onfacebook