7 things you must know to run a successful Instant Win game on Facebook

Posted on October 2, 2013 by

 

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  • Make sure an Instant Win game is the right fit to help you reach your goals

The Instant Win works like a slot machine- winners immediately know whether they’ve won or not, and are encouraged to come back and try again, driving up interactions on your page. Like the Sweepstakes, it’s one of the simplest campaigns you can run on Facebook.  It’s easy for a busy marketer to launch, and easy for the almost as busy prospect or fan to enter. That’s a great advantage if your goal is to grow your fan base and reach a large audience.

However, its simplicity and efficiency also mean the user experience is not the most fun, and not very memorable.  So, this is not the best type of campaign to run if you are looking to do some long term branding.  In that case, a personality test, a quiz or photo contest would be a much better choice.

facebook feedback

If you want to offer a fun and memorable experience to your participants, a personality test or a quiz will be a better choice than a sweepstakes. In this example, we ran a personality test to help users discover which type of Facebook marketer they were. It really became fun when our participants’ personality types were seen by their friends. This campaign generated a lot of positive feedback from our participants.

Finally, the Instant Win is a bit of a dud for social interactions. The only social context an Instant Win can offer is to reveal who among your friends has also participated. A quiz provides the opportunity to compare your score with your friends’, a photo contest allows for comments and interactions on photos posted by friends, and in a personality test, you can discover your best friend’s hidden traits. Much more fun!

The bottom line:

Quick and easy fan growth and fan reward: yes J

Sophisticated and fun user experience to make your brand more memorable: no L

 

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  • Make sure the Instant Win is a good fit with your audience

Instant Win games work well in industries and verticals which offer wide reaching and generalized products or services (consumer goods, travel, fashion, massage, landscaping, etc.). But, not so well in highly specialized B2B niche software or luxury goods. If your brand is of the Chanel or Salesforce CRM type, an “enter to win a $1,500 Chanel handbag” or “one year’s subscription to our CRM tool” may not be such a good idea…

If you run a B2B Facebook marketing company, a quiz challenging your audience about their Facebook Marketing knowledge is probably a better idea than launching a sweepstakes.

If you run a B2B Facebook marketing company, a quiz challenging your audience about their Facebook Marketing knowledge is probably a better idea than launching a sweepstakes.

Niche B2B audiences will likely prefer a quiz’s challenge of their knowledge and fun sense of competition over a random draw.

 

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  • Make sure you have enough prizes!

The whole purpose of a Facebook instant win campaign is to offer the ‘wow!’ experienced when participants get to see if they have won a prize in real time.  If your prizes are too limited in number, you’ll have more people saying “I’ve lost today L” than “whoah, I’ve just won, thank you J”. Don’t kill the ‘wow!’.  Offer more prizes.  Make sure you’ll have enough winning moments throughout your campaign to benefit from a significant number of users attacking your page with ecstatic comments!

So, what’s the magic number of prizes? In our experience, two to three per day works the best. If you’re running a weeklong campaign, plan on having at least 15 to 20 prizes. And, don’t forget to double that if you activate the viral option within Agorapulse, since each winning draw will generate an additional draw among the winner’s participating friends.

 

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  • Choose your prizes carefully

Avoid offering attractive prizes that have nothing to do with your brand. A free holiday will not attract fans of your beauty products.  Everyone wants to win an iPad. But, how many online gadget hunters are potential customers for your hand made jewelry, motorcycle accessories or exotic coffees?  An appropriate award will deflect prize hunters, who will hide your posts or unlike your page as soon as your campaign is over.  Eventually, this kind of activity will drag your EdgeRank score down, thus fewer of your true fans will see your content.

The prizes you offer should interest participants who are already your customers, or will be in the future. If your contest prize attracts contestants who have no reason to become your customer, change it!

Lord and Taylor

Lord & Taylor, a female online fashion retailer is awarding fashion accessories from its website.

If you are an airline, why not offer more miles to fans who are already members of your loyalty program, or an upgrade on their next flight? If you’re offering trips to resorts, send your winner to one of the destinations in your portfolio. If your business specializes in selling iPads, why not give away a must have accessory?  Or, an iPad?  😉

Choosing the right prize is your main guard against attracting opportunists and cheaters. You may have fewer entrants, but in the long run, you’ll be far better off with 100 new potential customers, than 1,000 scavengers.

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  • Don’t forget mobile users!

There are 1.1 billion active users on Facebook, and 750 million active users on mobile. That’s almost 70%!

If you think mobile users will only check their friend’s stories and never use your Facebook app, think again.  Based on our internal data, 40% of fans who are offered the chance to enter your competition from their mobile device do so!

Would you close the door to 40% of your fans and prospects?

Almost 33% of this campaign’s 26,000 participants were on a mobile device when they entered.

Almost 33% of this campaign’s 26,000 participants were on a mobile device when they entered.

Make sure the app vendor you choose offers mobile access to your contest, the standard link to your campaign tab will not work.  Zuck Dawg hasn’t built Facebook tabs for mobile yet, and possibly never will (you’d have to have really super small thumbs to click on the right one anyway ;).  App vendors, like Agorapulse, will provide you with a specific link, which detects the type of device your participants are using and optimize the format for their screen.

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  • Triple check your calls to action

Visitors can’t guess what you want them to do, you have to tell them.  If you want them to like your page to enter, tell them so, if they need to click to enter, show them where, if filling a form is required to enter, let them know that, and use visuals as much as possible.  Most people don’t read text or instructions on the web.

If you want your fans to like your page to enter, it is better to direct their attention to the like button they will need to click. In this example, the call to action may not be simple enough to be idiot proof...

If you want your fans to like your page to enter, it is better to direct their attention to the like button they will need to click. In this example, the call to action may not be simple enough to be idiot proof…

visual call to action

Highly visual calls to action are always a good idea.

 

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  • Promoting your Instant Win campaign, Facebook ads or organic communication?

As a general rule, we do not recommend investing in Facebook ads to recruit new fans. Even though they offer pretty good targeting options, your Facebook ads may generate new fans who are more interested in your prizes than your brand, product or services.

You can get rid of unwanted traffic to your website without damages. But you can’t get rid of fans- they are here to stay, unless they decide to leave.  So, if a bulk of your page’s fans aren’t genuine, it’s likely they will never engage with your posts and will most probably ignore or hide them, bringing your edgerank score down, and decreasing your ability to reach those who truly love you.

As a top-notch marketer, your goal is not to recruit more fans, but to recruit the right ones- those highly valuable fans you can build a productive relationship with.

And the best way to do that is to leverage the communication channels you already own, like your email list, your website traffic or your point of sale.

The best leverage you have to bring the right new fans into your social fold is your current customer base.  These excited customers who are already trafficking your website, reading your emails or visiting your stores are probably waiting to tell the world about you!  Make sure your Facebook app provider offers you the tools to reach them where they are, like an embed feature to plant your Facebook instant win game directly on your website.  Your website traffic can like your page, attempt to win, give you their email address and other valuable information without ever having to leave your site.

app embed

Agorapulse offers an option that allows you to embed your Facebook contest right within your blog or website. A convenient way to leverage your existing web traffic and boost participation in your Facebook Instant Win.

If they read your emails, make sure the app can be accessible through mobile as more and more users are now checking their emails from their mobile devices.

For your store traffic, make sure you have a mobile ready app and QR code (or short URLs) signage at the point of sale to convert these “real” visitors into fans.

This is the rollup we use on our booth when we sponsor events. Visitors are prompted to scan the QR code to install our Facebook app. This tactic converts a significant number of booth visitors into leads. You could use the same tactic to invite people to participate to Instant Win directly in your store.

This is the rollup we use on our booth when we sponsor events. Visitors are prompted to scan the QR code to install our Facebook app. This tactic converts a significant number of booth visitors into leads. You could use the same tactic to invite people to participate to Instant Win directly in your store.

Sometimes, investing a little in Facebook ads to increase the number of qualified fans can be a legitimate expense, but we recommend leveraging your own communication channels over paid ones first.  With Agorapulse’s mobile optimization and website embed options you can easily get new fans directly from your point of sale, your website, blog traffic or email list without spending a dime!

 

Richard is a Client Happiness Jedi for Agorapulse, based out of San Francisco and Paris, advising agencies and brands across the globe on Facebook page management and marketing. He sings Bachata in the shower and dances salsa 3x a week whether he needs it or not.