How to Use Facebook Gated Campaigns for Leads and to Grow Your List

social media how toDo you want a way to grow your list, get better feedback or increase user-generated content?

Do you use Facebook giveaways and contests to collect information about your fans?

Action-gated Facebook campaigns require users to share specific data or feedback before they can enter a giveaway or contest.

In this article I’ll show you the concept of action-gating and how three companies are using it effectively to meet their goals.

facebook gated campaigns

Here’s a tactic to use to grow your list, get better feedback or increase user-generated content.

Why Facebook Gated Campaigns?

Facebook gated campaigns use a pretty simple idea called action-gating: A company offers a prize in exchange for personal data (like an email address or zip code).

contact form

Action-gating is a good way to collect valuable data from fans.

Action-gated campaigns are hosted on your Facebook page via a third-party app instead of as a stand-alone update. These campaigns aren’t for collecting general comments under a status update; they’re for collecting specific demographic or contact information.

Action-gated campaigns require users to complete a specific task in exchange for something valuable from your brand, like access to or extra entries in a promotion, access to a coupon, etc. The user’s task may be filling out a form, uploading content, voting, etc.

Simply asking people to like your page (known as like-gating or fan-gating) to have access to your campaign doesn’t collect data you can use for business planning purposes (as you’ll see in #1 below) or future contact. Likes don’t get you extra content you can use across your other social channels to gain more attention. Action-gating does.

select photos form

Require fans to create content to enter a contest or giveaway.

Below I discuss three examples of companies using action-gating to gather valuable information from their fans and followers.

#1: Collect Location Data

Uber and The Honest Company are examples of companies partnering to host an action-gated giveaway. Rather than using a like-gating tactic, they opened entries to anyone, whether that person likes either page or not.

Each business page posted a series of status updates with a link to the entry page. When users clicked the link, they were taken to a form built to require people to share their name, email address, date of birth and zip code in order to enter. (Of course, they could also like the Uber or The Honest Company’s page, but it wasn’t a requirement for entry.)

uber contest image

Uber offered a month of free rides plus a $500 gift card to gather extra fan data.

Sharing that much personal information is quite a hoop to jump through, but the prize is worth $500. When a prize has high value, people are more willing to share their information.

With that valuable fan data in hand, Uber and The Honest Company learn where their fans live.

But wait. Can’t you get that same information from Facebook Insights? Well, yes, you can see the location of your fans by city, but collecting specific information like zip codes takes location data a step further.

honest company and uber contest landing page

The Honest Company asks for just enough information to learn a little more about audience.

The collected zip codes allow Uber to identify neighborhoods that could be targets for expansion and gives The Honest Company (which makes natural baby and home-care products) insights into which retail outlets their salespeople should call on.

That kind of targeting is much more valuable than a plain old like.

#2: Gather User-Generated Content

Few companies do a better job of encouraging (and getting) user-generated content than GoPro. The fan-submitted videos often get shared and commented on like crazy.

To get customers and fans to share footage they’ve shot using a GoPro camera, the company has an action-gated Facebook campaign called the GoPro Creator’s Challenge.

For a chance to win $5,000 and have their video featured on the GoPro Network, fans have to upload a video entry.

gopro contest landing page

Offer larger prizes to get people to take the time to contribute to a contest.

Shooting and uploading a video is more work than, say, answering a few questions on a survey, but the opportunity to win five grand makes the task worthwhile.

Keep in mind that GoPro doesn’t force users to like their page in order to enter the Creator’s Challenge. They’re assuming that people who genuinely love their brand and products will like the page because they want to.

GoPro’s personal reward comes in the form of high-quality video they can feature on their YouTube channel (which has more than two million subscribers), Twitter, Facebook and other social profiles.

#3: Round Up Potential Leads

Clothing retailer Lulu’s hosts a daily sweepstakes on their Facebook page. Their idea and execution are simple: Ask people to find a product on the Lulu’s website for a chance to win a $50 store credit.

lulu's contest landing page

Lulu’s hosts daily sweepstakes on their Facebook page to continually collect data from fans.

The feedback they get helps them determine what customers want to see more of. The beauty of this simple action-gated campaign is that any brand can do it.

Lulu’s uses a straightforward question that requires a short answer—a tactic that ensures a better response rate.

Also note how Lulu’s asks users for specific feedback—they steer entrants away from general comments. There’s no confusion on the user’s end and the task feels more like a creative break than tackling a homework assignment.

Lulu’s also collects email addresses as part of each entry so they can follow up with people outside of Facebook. This tactic is useful for a company like Lulu’s—or any company, really—because it lets them follow up via a customized email with a special deal.

Over to You

Action-gating offers more flexibility and value than a simple like-gated giveaway or contest. Collecting users’ personal data and feedback is just one way to use action-gating. You can also expand your reach by asking users to tweet about your campaign or share it on Google+ as an entry.

The key to successful Facebook gated campaigns is offering a significant prize that justifies the requirement for entry. The more you’re asking for, the more you have to offer in return.

What do you think? Have you used action-gating in a Facebook campaign? Will you try it in the future? Leave your comments below.

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About the Author, Jim Belosic

Jim Belosic is the CEO of ShortStack, a self-service software that allows businesses to create engaging campaigns for social, web and mobile. Other posts by »




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  • http://www.brett-fish.com/ Brett Fish

    Facebook gated contests when used in conjunction with targeted Facebook Ads are also a great way to grow a relevant Facebook following. We target ideal users based on demographics and interests/purchase behaviors, and then serve them ads featuring the contest info (Facebook link posts through Power Editor with the “Sign Up” call-to-action button seem to be the most effective and link directly to the contest app). Since users are required to “Like” the page to enter – we end up getting a bunch of Likes from our target audience, in addition to their names, emails, and email opt-ins for future marketing communications. Works great – and it’s important to offer a solid incentive that will inspire people to pursue – don’t skimp.









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