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30 Facebook Timeline Contest Ideas That Drive Likes and Comments

30 Facebook Timeline Contest Ideas That Drive Likes and Comments

Facebook has updated its promotions guidelines to allow brands to run Facebook contests on their Fan Page Timelines.

With these new Facebook promotion guidelines, brands can now accept “contest entries” by asking fans to like, comment, or message the page.

While this is a huge opportunity to drive brand engagement, many businesses are struggling to come up with Facebook contest ideas for their fan page timelines.

Several Facebook app companies launched the ability to export a .csv of likes and comments to help business owners take advantage of these changes.

Brands are asking this question

These new guidelines though have raised the following question.

With many great tools to manage likes and comments, how do you go about ensuring that Facebook Timeline Contest you post actually gets engagement?

The status updates below are meant to inspire you with ideas that take advantage of the new Facebook changes and create and drive engagement.

30 Facebook Timeline Contest Ideas

  1. We’re almost to 40,000 fans. Click like to celebrate! The 100th like will get a free [INCENTIVE]
  2. Comment “Coupon” below to get 20% off your next purchase at [FAN PAGE NAME]. Enter before 5pm EST tomorrow!
  3. We’d love getting to know you as well as your best friend knows you! Leave a comment below and attach a picture of you and your best friend for your chance to win [INCENTIVE]. We’ll pick a winner at noon PST tomorrow.
  4. Comment below for your chance to win a free T-Shirt: The best kind of [INSERT] is _____________. Get the most likes on your comment by 2pm EST tomorrow to win!
  5. Comment below, what year was [FAN PAGE NAME] founded in? The first person to guess it right gets [INCENTIVE]
  6. On a scale 0-10+ what do you think of our new product pictured below? The person who leaves the best feedback in the comments will win the product totally free! Winner chosen at 2pm EST tomorrow.
  7. Who is excited for Winter? Like this post for your chance to win [INCENTIVE]. We’ll pick a winner at 1pm EST tomorrow.
  8. Tomorrow is our 50% in store sale! Click like for your chance to win your entire purchase, free (max $500). We’ll pick a winner at 9am EST tomorrow!
  9. We’re launching a new menu item and want your feedback. Comment below and tell us what ingredient you think we should add to the menu item pictured below. The winner will get a free year of the menu item! We’ll announce the winner on our fan page at 2pm EST tomorrow.
  10.  TRIVIA: How many fortune 500 brands do we work with? Comment below with your guess for a chance to win a free $500 service plan! Winner will be announced at 1pm EST tomorrow.
  11. Click “Like” if you can’t wait for the weekend. At 2pm EST tomorrow we’re picking a winner who’ll get a weekend trip for two to Myrtle Beach!
  12. Caption this! Comment below with your idea. The comment that gets the most likes will win a [INCENTIVE]. Winner will be picked tomorrow at 5pm EST.
  13. Guess how many Jelly Beans are in the jar pictured below. The person who comments closest to the actual amount will win a free year of Jelly Beans! Winner picked at 5pm EST tomorrow.Pro Tip: Get a picture of whatever your product is with “a lot” of the product featured. This could be your new books stacked on a bookshelf if you’re an author or 100’s of pairs of shoes if you’re Nike. Ask your fans to guess #’s. Its quick, fast, and easy for them to participate.
  14. On a scale of 0-10+ how much do you love [ENTER BUSINESS NAME]. Tomorrow at 2pm EST we’ll pick our biggest fan and will feature them in our cover photo!
  15. Enter your twitter handle in the comments below. The person who comments with the most followers will win a Free T-Shirt! We’ll pick the winner at 3pm EST tomorrow.
  16. Last night we played an epic show at The Sycamore Deli. Click ‘LIKE’ if you were there (or wish you were!) for a chance to win a free CD!
  17. Gearing up for Halloween! Post a picture of your costume in the comments for a chance to win [INCENTIVE]. Winner will be picked tomorrow at 5pm EST.
  18. What will the score of tonight’s game be between the Eagles & Redskins? The closest guess will win [INCENTIVE]. Winner will be announced at 8am tomorrow morning on our fan page.
  19. When you were a kid what you want to be when you grew up?  Share your dream in the comments to win [INCENTIVE]. We’ll pick a winner at noon  EST on Friday.
  20. Click on this picture and tap ‘L’ on your keyboard for a chance to win [INCENTIVE] hint: tapping L ‘likes’ the photo 😉 The 100th like wins!
  21. How many cups of coffee is too many? Comment below for a chance to win a $10 Starbucks giftcard to feed that caffeine addiction 🙂 Winner will be picked at 9am EST tomorrow (that is, if you’ve had your coffee and are awake)
  22. What did you do this past weekend? Share a photo that you took in the comments – picture with the most ‘likes’ will be our featured cover photo for the rest of the week! Contest ends on Monday at 11am PST.
  23. If I could be anywhere in the world right now, I would be in __________________. Share your favorite vacation destination for a chance to win! Winner will be picked at noon EST tomorrow!
  24. Who is the first character to utter any kind of speech in the original Star Wars? Guess the right answer and you could win this Darth Vader t-shirt! Winner will be picked at 9pm EST tomorrow!
  25.  Who is the only MLB player to hit a homerun in his first two World Series at-bats? Share the right answer and you could win tickets to the 2013 World Series! We’ll pick the lucky winner at noon EST tomorrow. Check back on our fan page wall to see if you won!
  26. My favorite song is ________ by _______. Post your favorite song and artist below and win tickets to the next show! We’ll pick a winner from the comments at 5pm on Wednesday!
  27. If you could eat only one thing from our menu for 365 days, what would it be? Share with us for your chance to win a giftcard! Winner will be announced at 3pm EST on Tuesday!
  28. My favorite thing to do at the beach is _______. Share your favorite beach-day hobby with us, and you could win a trip to Cancun for Spring Break! Giveaway ends at 4pm EST tomorrow.
  29.  Who was the first astronaut to go into space? Answer correctly, and you could win tickets to the Air & Space museum downtown! Contest ends at 5pm EST tomorrow.
  30. “A flute without holes is not a flute. A donut without a hole, is a Danish.” – ?? Name who said this quote and from what movie, and you could win a [INCENTIVE]! We’ll post the winner to our wall at 5pm EST tomorrow.

Sentence architecture for high converting Facebook contests

For brands looking to make Facebook contests that’ll get likes and comments on their brands timeline, you can follow the formula below and it’ll work every time.

  1. Call to Action
  2. Incentive
  3. Ending Time
  4. Rules and Regulations

This will keep the Facebook Timeline Contest focused and brand specific for best results.

Your turn

Do you think you’ll run a Timeline Contest on your Fan Page?

Guest author: Alex Shamy is a very cool marketer at Heyo 


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  • Great variety and ideas for inspiration! I like the ones that use trivia, or something semi-related to the brand. Posts still solicit a lot of comments/shares and help exposure in the newsfeed, but aren’t so self-serving. The opinion ones are great too. Social media is about expressing yourself and who doesn’t want to share what they think?

    • Alex Shamy

      Thanks for commenting, Sarah! Do you manage the SproutSocial Facebook Page? If so, what would an ideal contest update look like? – Alex

      • Hey Alex, I’m more focused on social outreach and some community management. We’ve yet to hold a timeline contest, but my team recently did a app-based one for some great marketing-focused books. We built the app ourselves, so it was easy to implement and inexpensive! I’m sure we’ll be exploring some other options in the future though with the lessened guidelines for contests/sweeps.

  • Love the crunched up paper thanks Alex!

    • Cool little graphic there, right Robert? Thanks for commenting! – Alex

    • Thanks Robert!

  • Impressive list of ideas and inspiration for Facebook marketing. I will certainly try many of them out. Thank you for sharing your ideas with us here.

    • Thanks Tom – do you manage multiple Facebook business pages? – Alex

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    I am 100% at your back for this road safety forum you are having.

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  • Leah Van Rooy

    Great ideas in here! It is great to see that you suggested people including ending times, rules and regulations… you don’t see that on that many “less formal” contest posts – but what a difference it makes!

    Leah Van Rooy

  • Always On Social

    These are great ideas that definitely will work. Thank you for posting. In particular, I completely agree with your 4 steps on “Sentence architecture for high converting Facebook contests”, this is great knowledge to have as a social marketer.

    • That tidbit is totally tweetable, right Always On Social? Thanks – Alex

      • Always On Social

        Of course! I had to tweet it as soon as I read it. Great content Alex!

  • David Makacha

    A very Informative article, great Ideas that companies needs to implement. I found this very useful as an academic.

    • Thanks, David! What types of Facebook Fan Pages do you manage? – Alex

      • David Makacha

        I am a PR student, interested in social networks. I benefited a lot from your articles

        • Wonderful, David – Best of luck in your studies!

  • This feels like another sneaky Facebook way of not letting you know who
    your prospects really are… if people switch to this while not using a
    third party app like Woobox or any of them to run promotions – they no
    longer have the opportunity to get the emails of their Facebook
    community. Just because you have 10,000 Facebook fans doesn’t mean you
    can actually talk to all of them with FB’s complicated algorithm. Using
    a third party app to run your promotions let you get their emails for
    follow up promotions, etc. And if you do your email marketing
    correctly, your open rate and click thru rates will be significantly
    higher than the percentage of folks who actually see your posts.

    • I agree Karen, it seems as though Facebook is encouraging spending more advertising dollars to get these types of posts to show in the news feed. I think a combination of the two (news feed update + 3rd party app) are the optimal way to run a contest. – Alex

      • Agree to disagree. Data capture is key to knowing who your customers are and effectively communicating with all of them. Case in point, my client Haley & The Hound has been running a contest via a third party app for the past few months. Their Facebook page now has over 4,000 Facebook fans. We use the share to win function
        offered by Woobox – essentially share our post – get 3 bonus entries. By running a weekly promotion via a third party app, Haley & The Hound increased their email database by… 1,100 emails. That’s 25% of their
        Facebook community we can now reach out and touch directly. Better still their recent giveaway, had a reach of over 6,200 and gave us an additional 50 new emails – something you’re not going to get by ponying up for a sponsored post.

  • Thanks Piroska!

  • What a great list! Will definitely be sharing this with our clients. 🙂

    • That’s great to hear – what business do you work for?? – Alex

  • John

    Inspiring Idea for facebook like

  • Cyril Gaillard

    Or you can use http://www.fyrebox.co to create a game playable on your facebook timeline and grow your mailing list!

  • Great ideas and have implemented a couple of them as well. For details you can check us out http://goo.gl/EAIwGM

    • Nice stuff, Shankar! What tool did you use to create those campaigns?

  • Sure is Stewart, when you say ‘blog contest’ – what exactly did you have in mind? Would love to learn more about your goals!

  • Great post working on my competitions now. Like the idea of photo competition.

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  • Sceptics point to the MOOCs’ high drop-out rates, which in some cases exceed 90%. But Coursera and Udacity both insist that this reflects the different expectations of consumers of free products, who can browse costlessly.

  • Regina E. Coley

    Awesome list! I’ll definetly be using some 🙂