I am in the middle of an argument with a professional web designer friend about increasing traffic and improving search ranking with competitions (specifically, inviting users to submit photos and videos that will be ranked by other users' votes).
On an established site, he runs the competition onsite, claiming that this creates lots of links directly to the site.
Has anyone had enough experience to comment on how this approach compares with creating a Facebook Fan Page and running the competitions on that?
One critical consideration for me is that I would never allow uploads to my own host account - I don't want it hacked. Another is that I don't see any point in installing the apps needed for user interaction when I can use existing and independently maintained ones on sites such as Facebook.
But what I'm really interested in is the comparative effectiveness of own site vs Fan Page in driving new traffic and improving search rankings
A Fan page is certainly going to fetch you huge traffic under the condition that you got to have a huge base of active and spontaneous fans. Your website is also going to fetch you traffic but for that you need quality and unique contents.
I heard that Facebook charge you now to run a competition? Anybody know if this is correct?
Creating a Fan Page to host your competition will not only save you from the management of these competitions, but it will also lead to your competition spreading more easily - it reduces the friction of sharing.
When users upload a photo, vote, comment, etc. these actions are posted on their stream that their friends will see. Their friends could then easily join the competition as well.
One way to bring traffic back to your website could be to have the Ts and Cs of the competition listed there or any other Rules.
You could also post the winner of the competition on your website with the photo they submitted on Facebook.
The case could be made that those that are interested in the competition enough to enter will also be interested enough in what you do to make a reason for them to enter; therefore they will go to your website.
Thanks, Drew. Some useful hints on how to get the best of both worlds.