How to Run a Successful Facebook Giveaway: Lessons Learned

Mar 31, 2021

When planning for a Facebook giveaway, you must have all your ducks in a row so that it will run as smoothly as possible. But even when everything is planned, you must expect the unexpected. 

Our client, The Casselman Inn and Restaurant, approached our team at InnerAction Media about helping them with a Christmas giveaway. The owner instructed us to “go big.” They gave us the reins and allowed us to make all the decisions, with their approval having the final say. We decided to break up the giveaway into four different weeks in December, leading up to Christmas with the largest prize. The giveaway items consisted of:

  1. A candy basket with a $15 gift certificate
  2. A jam and apple butter gift basket with a $25 gift certificate
  3. A meal for two at The Casselman Restaurant and a gift certificate for a custom cake
  4. A two-night stay in The Historic Dorsey Suite

How To Start A Giveaway

To start, I created a schedule with social media text announcing each giveaway with the three rules to enter – like the post, tag a friend and share the post. We also created winner announcements and direct message copy so that we were prepared to notify each winner as soon as we chose them. Simple enough, right? But then, the unexpected happened. A scammer came along and pretended to be us.

Large Response

Each post had an average of over 500 likes, shares and comments, respectively – which was a more significant response than any of us had expected. But just like anything on social media, the more attention something receives, the more problems you may face. 

Because of some 40 devoted and loyal Casselman followers, I quickly learned on a Saturday morning that a look-alike account had been created. This account had been messaging followers to let them know that they had won and needed to, of course, enter their credit card information to claim their prize. Luckily, this seemed like a scam to the followers, and they knew to report them and let us know immediately.

How to Avoid Scammers

Unfortunately, there is no particular button to delete any potential Facebook threats; however, there are measures that can be taken to avoid this type of situation. Firstly, we edited our rules to be as clear and concise as possible. Things such as obvious statements like, “We will not contact you for your credit card information,” “We do not need your address or location,” “The winner will be announced on this page ONLY at noon on x date,” and other rules of that nature will keep those who may want to try and scam the followers of your page from doing so since your rules are so straightforward. 

Facebook recommends not having people share your post because this can create more traffic, as we saw occur. However, with the sharing aspect, there is a greater reward. We announced the scam to let all followers know that if they were contacted by a page that looked like The Casselman, to disregard it. 

One other thing we noticed was that a very strange account had followed us. This account had no friends, no profile picture and the only account they followed was The Casselman. Their posts had been created and posted all within the hour and they were located halfway across the world. Facebook does its best to delete users that seem suspicious as this one was, but sometimes they get overlooked. You always have the opportunity to ban a page on Facebook. And it comes in handy when situations like this occur.

The Results

To say the giveaway was a success is an understatement. Despite the minor scam we faced initially, we invited every person who liked one of our giveaway posts to like the overall page. In December alone, The Casselman gained over 850 likes to their page, a 700 percent increase from the prior month. They also reached over 111,000 people on Facebook with the giveaway. 

With the large reach and abundance of entries, we thought it was only fair to offer everyone who participated in the giveaways a small prize. As an appreciation, we suggested that The Casselman Restaurant offer 10 percent off anyone’s bill to all who mentioned it to their waitress. 

Gain A Following

Recently, The Casselman just surpassed 7,000-page likes. Social media can be a powerful free tool in your marketing strategy, as long as you play it right. We have experience in helping businesses grow, whether it be through website traffic, video exposure or social media. Contact us today to start growing your business!



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