Facebook ditches third-party app requirement for promotions

Facebook ditches third-party app requirement for promotions
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Facebook has updated its approach to promotions with brands now able to run competitions on their Facebook page’s Timeline.

Previously marketers could only run promotions via third-party apps. 

Facebook said it made the changes because "we want to make it easier for businesses of all sizes to create and administer promotions on  Facebook, and to align our policies to better meet  the needs of marketers".

Last year marketers were warned their pages could be torn down if they breached the rules.

Thinktank Social’s director of social media, Sam Mutimer, believes the change is significant as it should allow brands to respond to trends quickly by doing away with the need for a designer or developer to create the activation.

There are however downsides to timeline promotions, one of which being limited intelligence.

“Running all competitions via the Timeline will significantly limit the amount of data you can pull from the user,” Mutimer said.

“One that immediately springs to mind is that it’s going to be very tricky to build that database up outside of Facebook, for example for your EDMs.”

The change will allow brand’s promotions to reach a larger audience but this is also one of the update’s largest downsides.

Mutimer believes marketers will need to be prepared for some “curly questions” that don’t directly relate to the competition itself.

“Have a crisis management plan in place prior to activation. If ‘x’ writes a negative comment putting the brand in the spotlight – how will you deal with it, and in what time frame?”

Brands can now collect entries by having fans interact with post, have fans message the page and use likes as a voting mechanism.

The update Facebook announced here has also resulted in changes to the social network’s promotion guidelines.

Brand pages are now prohibited from tagging or asking people to tag themselves in content they are not actually pictured in.

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