In the old days, growing a following on Facebook was simple – you’d set up a giveaway on your Facebook Page, tell your audience to “Like this Page to enter” and watch your like tally soar. This practice was called Like-gating, and when Facebook outlawed it in 2014, torch and pitchfork-wielding mobs nearly took to the streets.
Ok, people weren’t quite that mad, but marketers and business owners certainly felt left in a lurch. What we realize all these years later is the Like-gate ban actually was in our best interest. Now, our like tally is a true representation of those actually interested in our business, not just those who clicked like because they were incentivized to.
To be clear, the goal is still to increase your following but to do it by driving as much traffic as possible to your Page. From there, those genuinely interested in your brand will become a follower and hopefully a potential new customer.
But how do we drive said traffic? And how do we avoid Facebook’s strict rules regarding likes? This article will lay it all out for you: from guiding you through the dos and don’ts of gaining followers to listing some out-of-the-box ideas for driving loads of (new) traffic to your Page.
First, here’s what not to do
The inspiration behind the Like-gate ban was this:
To ensure quality connections and help businesses reach the people who matter to them, we want people to like Pages because they want to connect and hear from the business, not because of artificial incentives. We believe this update will benefit people and advertisers alike.”
Since the Like-gate ban, Facebook’s policies regarding acquiring likes have become increasingly strict. Today, asking for a like or follow without even requiring it can result in a penalty.
To summarize, never:
– require a like or a Page follow as a means of entry into a contest or giveaway.
– ask visitors to like or follow your Page (even if it’s not required).
Here’s what to do instead
I mentioned driving traffic to your Page, but how does one do that? A tried and true method is to run regular contests and giveaways.
Contests and giveaways entice new engagement with your brand, but also allow you to strategically drive traffic wherever and however you’d like your potential new customers to find you. In this article we’ll be looking at different ways contests and giveaways can drive traffic to your Facebook Page.
Always, always, always use good contest software to build your contest or giveaway. Contest-building software such as ShortStack gives you access to the following features ideal for driving traffic:
Include a refer-a-friend incentive in your contest or giveaway to increase sharing. The way refer-a-friend works is this: when entering your contest or giveaway, the participant will have the option to share it to their news feed. If someone clicks on that shared post and enters themselves, the original referrer earns extra chances to win.
With contest software like ShortStack, you can control the number of extra “points” or “chances to win” the referrer can earn. You can even set a cap on how many refer-a-friend points can be earned in total.
LEARN HOW TO ENABLE REFER-A-FRIEND
Points for Actions
Like refer-a-friend, Points for Actions allows you to offer extra “points” or “chances to win.” However, instead of offering these incentives in exchange for referrals, you can award them in exchange for various actions taken. For example, ask participants to visit your Facebook Page in exchange for an extra chance to win. Remember, you can’t ask them to follow your Page, but by simply visiting it, it’s more likely they’ll click that follow button.
Learn to set up this Points for Actions template
Import Comments and/or Likes from a Facebook Post
A “Like or Comment to Enter” contest or giveaway can help you grow your following a little like the Points for Actions feature. Although you’re still not able to ask for likes on your Page, you are able to ask for likes and/or comments on a post. Make sure to pin the post to the top of your feed for easy accessibility.
By promoting your giveaway outside of Facebook, you’ll drive traffic to your Page. Those looking to participate in your contest will likely click like, thus, organically growing your following.
Publish a Contest or Giveaway to a Facebook Page
Yet another way to drive traffic to your Facebook Page is by publishing third-party apps to it. If you have 2,000 or more followers, Facebook allows you to publish custom apps that live as sub tabs (similar to sub pages on a website) on your Facebook Page. With ShortStack, build a contest or giveaway and publish it as a Page Tab App in just a few clicks.
Lastly, never forget the golden rule of growing a following
To grow your following, there’s one hard and fast rule that you should always adhere to – be genuine. Post quality content that is relevant to your brand and keep products, services and core values at the heart of your message. You’ll not only attract those truly interested in your business, but you’ll also keep them engaged and interested for the long haul.
Create your first Facebook contest now
It’s free and we don’t need your credit card.