How to Use Facebook Contests to Generate Qualified Leads

Facebook Contest Leads Funnel diagramFacebook contests are a great way to increase fan page likes and infuse fun in your social marketing efforts. However, if you’re building a contest to produce something more sustainable for your business – like generating qualified leads – think about incorporating these ideas into your next giveaway.

First, offer a prize that relates directly to your brand. Sure, everyone wants to win an iPad — but that’s the problem. Your business isn’t trying to reach everyone. If your business offers marketing automation software, for example, you don’t want your contest to be a magnet for teenagers who totally want an iPad to play Minecraft during study hall.

Use your prize as your first lead filter. Think of what your target audience, and your target audience alone, would crave. Toss around ideas such as an extended trial period, free Webinar, product sampler, or branded swag to pull in fans who have an interest in your brand or what you offer.

Now, let’s think about the entry form. Include a field to capture entrant email addresses — it’s hard to nurture leads without them! Not only is requesting email addresses good for your business, it’s also in sync with Facebook promotional guidelines which prohibit the use of fan page functions (such as wall posts or messages) to notify winners.

In fact, if you plan to use a Facebook-compliant, third-party application such as Wildfire or Shortstack to run your contest, you’ll notice that the email field is already set as a required field.

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To further filter and segment your contest entrants, be sure to ask 2-3 qualifying questions. If, for example, you ask what service or product in your niche entrants currently use, you can filter their responses and segment your email list accordingly into users vs. nonusers or users of product X vs. users of product Y.

My ebook “How to Create a Winning Strategy for Your Facebook Contest” goes into more detail on sound strategies for fan page promotions, but these three rules are a good start to put your next contest on solid ground.

Photo Credit: Flickr CC/Mines and Money

Funnel image: Lisa Kalner Williams

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