Raffles – they’ve been a powerful marketing tool even long before digital marketing was as prevalent as it is today.
Now, in combination with a powerful social media marketing platform like Facebook, raffles are a great way for a business like yours to engage your target audience, increase brand reach, and generate leads and sales.
I’ve put together this simple step-by-step guide to teach you how to run a successful Facebook raffle.
Let’s jump right in!
How to Run a Successful Facebook Raffle Step 1: Pre-planning
Before you get started running your raffle, you need to do a little pre-planning.
The first thing you want to do is define your target market for your raffle. Though you’ve probably got a big target market, you want to choose a relatively significant subset of them who share the same interests. This allows you to more easily choose your prize and define the theme of your Facebook raffle.
Next, you’ll want to establish your goals for the raffle. Do you simply want to increase social media engagement? Do you want to promote one of your new products to your existing fans and followers, help spread the reach of your brand to new potential customers, or highlight a collaboration with another brand?
Whatever your goal, running a successful raffle can help you achieve it. Just make sure you keep your raffle target market and goal in mind as you move forward into putting together your Facebook raffle.
How to Run a Successful Facebook Raffle Step 2: Choose your prize
Choosing your Facebook raffle prize is one of the most important parts of running a great Facebook raffle. As awesome or massive as your brand may be, a suboptimal prize just won’t get you the best possible results for your contest. Think long and hard about what your target market wants, and pick your prize accordingly.
That being said, don’t pick a prize that’s totally unrelated to your brand because you think tons of people will enter to win it.
Just think about it: if you were offered a free iPad or trip for 2 to Mexico, would you even bother to see if the brand interested you at all?
Exactly. The most important rule you can follow when it comes to picking your Facebook raffle prize is to pick a prize that’s both exciting and relevant to your brand – that’s the key to Facebook raffle success.
Struggling to think of Facebook raffle prize ideas? Here’s a few you can use, no matter what your brand is:
- Your product: Go figure! Giving away your product is exciting (well, as exciting as your product is) and serves the second purpose of ensuring all of your contest participants are interested in your brand. Whether it’s an existing product or a new launch, giving away your product is a simple yet awesome prize idea.
- A product bundle: Similarly, giving away a few of your products is another great prize idea. Many people look at the overall value of the prize when they’re considering whether or not to enter. Putting together a prize package of a few of your products can up the value of your overall prize, while keeping it directly related to your brand.
- A gift card: If you’d like to give your entrants the luxury of choice, you can also give away a gift card that they can spend on your products. Though it’s not quite as visually appealing as an actual product, the choice that raffle winners get from a gift card could actually net you more entrants.
- A partnered prize bundle: One Facebook raffle strategy I love is partnering with another related brand to put together an awesome prize. Choose a brand that you love within your industry that isn’t a competitor, but has a related product (if you’re a local tortilla chip company, you might look for a local guacamole brand). Put together a prize bundle to increase the reach of your Facebook raffle.
You always want to maximize the total value of your prize, while keeping in mind the total value you believe can get from the sales generated in your post-raffle efforts.
How to Run a Successful Facebook Raffle Step 3: Raffle rules
Once you’ve planned your contest and decided on a prize, the next thing you’ll want to do is put together your raffle rules. Facebook can be pretty strict about how you choose to run your contest, so you want to make sure you’re following all of their promotion guidelines when you’re putting together your raffle.
If you want a full, in-depth guide to Facebook Raffle rules, check out this helpful resource my colleague James put together: Facebook Raffle Rules: A Step-by-step Guide
I’ll still give you a quick overview in case you’re short for time…
First, your Facebook raffle post. You want to make sure:
- * It’s not hosted on a personal profile.* Facebook requires you to host your contest (or promote it) from your brand’s page, in a Facebook tab, or within a Facebook app. You can share the contest on your employees’ personal pages, but you can’t administer the contest from them (and really, why would you want to?).
- You link to rules and regulations. Based on your local laws, contest regulations may require you to restrict your raffle to certain ages (along with other specific regulations). Though they don’t need to be right in your raffle post, make sure you at least link to them so all entrants can see your raffle’s exact rules and regulations.
- You include a disclaimer. You can do this on your raffle page or on the raffle post itself – just make sure you make it clear that Facebook isn’t at all involved with the administration of your giveaway.
As far as entry rules goes, there are several ways you can get people to enter your raffle:
- Like your post
- Comment on your post
- Post on your Page
- Message your Page
- Fill out a form hosted on an external landing page
- Submit a photo, video, or text (on your Page or on another landing page)
Keep in mind that you can’t ask entrants to do any of the following:
- Share your Page
- Tag themselves in a random photo (one they aren’t actually in)
- Post on their own Timelines
- Share your Page or raffle on a friend’s Timeline
Yes, you will see contests that do this – but if you’re putting together a Facebook raffle, the last thing you want to do is run a contest that breaks Facebook’s rules.
How to Run a Successful Facebook Raffle Step 4: Designing your raffle
When you’re putting together your raffle, you’re going to need to choose between running it right on your page, or using a third-party contest app to create an external landing page.
There’s perks and problems with each of them.
Running a raffle on your page is awesome because it’s simple – it’s easy to create a Facebook raffle post that’s eye-catching and gets people to enter. On the other hand, you can’t really collect lead information because you won’t have an entry form, meaning post-raffle marketing efforts will rely on Facebook’s organic Page reach (and we know it’s not so great).
Running a raffle on a landing page is great for the opposite reasons – you can collect lead information, which means you’ll have the emails of your entrants. Having emails means you can create email drip campaigns and newsletters to send to them in the future, converting non-winners into sales. However, an external landing page means people need to leave Facebook to enter, which can make it difficult to maximize the number of entrants your raffle receives.
Either way, you’re going to want to create an awesome Facebook post to promote your raffle. Create an eye-catching image that highlights your prize; feel free to includes some raffle details (what it’s called, when it runs until, etc.).
Side note – running a contest that has some sort of theme can be a lot more engaging than a random contest. Attaching your Facebook raffle to an occasion like Thanksgiving, Mother’s Day or even the Superbowl is a great way to boost interest in your raffle, especially if it’s related to the interests of your target market.
If you’re running your Facebook raffle on an external page, you’ll want to follow landing page best practices. This means having a clear, benefit-oriented headline, highlighting the value of your prize, minimizing the number of fields on your entry form, and including social share buttons to maximize the reach of your Facebook raffle.
The way you promote your Facebook raffle can mean the difference between contest failure and success.
First, let’s take a look at a couple organic methods to promote your raffle on Facebook:
- Update your cover photo: Changing your cover photo to match your contest assets and direct Facebook Page viewers to your raffle post or page is a great way to get a few extra entrants.
- Send a newsletter to your existing email list: Reach out to current your current email subscribers to inform them of the contest. Though it might seem counterproductive to market to people who you know already like your brand, this could help renew interest from your inactive
- Add a popup to your website: Adding a popup to your website to direct people to your Facebook raffle is a great way to maximize the returns you get from website traffic. Make it an exit popup, so you don’t distract people who are already looking to buy.
And, of course, there’s paid promotion. Though you might think promoting a raffle is a waste (why not just promote your website or products directly?), often people aren’t quite ready to buy when they see your brand for the first time. Entering a contest is a lower-commitment action that allows you to create connections with buyers in your target market that you can more reliably convert to sales in the future.
Use Facebook’s native Ads platform to precisely target the people you want to reach with your contest. It’s a tool that allows you to serve ads with incredible specificity; use that to your advantage by retargeting past website visitors or targeting the people who like competing brands within your industry, in addition to targeting based on interest.
Once your promotion efforts are underway, all you need to do is let your raffle go!
How to Run a Successful Facebook Raffle Step 6: Following up
Once your raffle is over, there’s still work to be done. A raffle is random – so randomly draw your winner (using a randomizer or a more old-school method). Make sure you announce your winner(s) through Facebook. I’d suggest you include a discount code in this post, so you can turn some of the warm leads you generated through Facebook into sales for your business.
If you ran your raffle using a contest app, here’s your time to shine. Email the list of (non-winning) entrants telling them they unfortunately didn’t win, but that you’d like to give them a special discount as thanks for entering. You might even want to set up a drip, reminding customers (maybe a week out, and once again right before it ends) to use the discount before it expires.
Make sure these leads get added to your normal subscription list once the contest ends, so you can continue to market to them in the future through email and turn them into sales.
Hopefully, this guide has given you everything you need to run your next Facebook raffle. If you have any questions (or want to let me know that I missed something), feel free to sound off in the comments below.