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Beyond fan-gating

We need to rethink the way that we run Facebook competitions. The social network recently announced that as of 5 November 2014, it will not be possible to incentivise users to Like a Page. This means no more fan-gating – in other words, no more using the Like function to unlock entry forms, rewards, special offers, games or any other type of content.

According to the Facebook blog, the reasoning behind this policy change is “to ensure quality connections and help businesses reach the people who matter to them”.

Facebook wants their users to like Pages because they are interested in the brand or business, not because they have been rewarded or incentivised to do so.

Apps created from today onwards “won’t get the ‘liked’ boolean in the signed_request object on pages” and from 5 November, “for existing apps, this value will always be set to true,” explains Facebook’s Product Manager Simon Cross.

While this does call for a new approach when running competitions and promotions, there are still plenty of ways to grow a fan base. Here are three ideas…

  1. Post more images: As we’ve discussed before, photos get 53% more likes, 104% more comments, and 84% more click-throughs than other types of content. However, make sure that the photos you post are your own or follow copyright law if you’re sharing from another source.
  2. Create compelling content: By regularly posting content that adds value to your fans’ lives, you’ll keep them coming back for more and sharing your posts with their friends. For content to work, it needs to be intriguing, inspiring, funny, entertaining, thought-provoking or heart-warming. On top of this, it also needs to be highly relevant to your audience.
  3. Invest in advertising: Paid advertising is a vital ingredient in most Facebook marketing campaigns. What we love about this approach is that you can target your ad by location, sex, age, keyword, relationship status, job title, workplace and other criteria – and you set your own ad-spend parameters.

If you’d like more advice on this topic or your Facebook strategy, give Clint a call now on 082 559 9903 or email him at

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