We’ve never run a contest on Facebook before– Facebook’s terms of service make it just too darn difficult.
(All those contests you see asking you to “like” or “share” a status or a photo in order to enter to win something? Yep, those are against Facebook’s TOS. Most people either don’t know or don’t care, but Facebook can shut down your page without warning if you violate their rules. I don’t want to take that risk.)
In order to run a legitimate contest on Facebook, you pretty much have to use a third-party application. Which either means you need to have mad development skills to create your own (I don’t) or spend money to use an app that someone else has already created.
So, that’s what we’re doing.
Announcing the Best Sandbar Pictures of All Time contest.
You can enter on Facebook (click here to enter or vote), or you can also enter a photo on Twitter or Instagram by using hashtag #sbparty13. The app claims that entries with the hashtag will automatically be entered, but if for some reason it doesn’t work, we’re not responsible.
You can enter pictures and vote until August 5.
Encourage your friends and family to vote for your picture; the entry with the most votes will win a pair of VIP passes to the beer garden at our August 10 block party!
You must be 21 to enter the contest and redeem the prize; we’ll ask for two forms of ID to verify.
So start digging out your best Sandbar pictures and enter our contest!
Last week, Dave was contacted by a reporter who wanted to interview us about our use of foursquare, the location-based social networking service.
I spoke with the reporter, Stephanie Miles, this week to answer a few questions. The interview is featured online at StreetFight.com, a site that looks at the business of hyperlocal. Read it here!
We haven't done much with foursquare lately. We were one of the first businesses in Lawrence to use it, but it's hard to figure out a special to offer customers when you run a bar. Liquor laws in Kansas don't allow us to discount drinks unless everyone is entitled to the same discount, all day, so that kind of defeats the purpose of checking in on foursquare.
The first special we ran rewarded frequent customers: for every third check-in between 5-9 p.m., the customer could show their check-in to the bartender and get free jukebox credits. People love our jukebox, so this seemed like a fun way to reward them for coming in regularly on a shift where we aren't usually very busy.
Another special that we ran didn't reward the customer with anything but warm fuzzies, but it was a success. We borrowed the idea from the Legends shopping center in Kansas City. For every check-in during a period of time, we donated a buck to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. We raised almost $100 with this special, which is great.
Other exciting achievements (for us, anyway) with foursquare were when we unlocked the swarm badge for having 50 people checked in at the same time, and the night we hit 1000 check-ins and rewarded the customer with a T-shirt.
We aren't currently running any foursquare specials, but if we can come up with a good one we'll certainly do it again.
Our new shark photo opportunity has been a big hit! We've received several pictures of customers posing in the cutout. Here's a few for your viewing pleasure:
So much fun! Don't forget, we're having a contest with these pictures: submit a picture with the shark cutout to us, and you could win a Sandbar T-shirt! You can email them (email@example.com) or tweet them to us (@thesandbar). We also love to see them on our Facebook page, but because of Facebook's contest rules, you'll also need to submit it by email or tweet in order to enter.
On Sunday, we'll pick a random winner.
We love sharks, so naturally Shark Week is a lot of fun for us. Although, as others have said, "every week is Shark Week if you do it right," and we think we're doing it right.
We recently unveiled a brand-new photo cutout with a shark on it, so we thought we'd have a little contest.
Here's the deal:
- Take your picture with our shark cutout
- Tweet it to us (@thesandbar) or email it to us (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Next Sunday, we'll pick a random winner to get a Sandbar T-shirt
You can upload your picture to our Facebook page if you want- and we'd love for you to!- but entries that are only uploaded to Facebook won't count in the contest. Facebook has funky rules about contests and instead of trying to figure out their (very complex) rules, we're using methods that are easier for us. So, if you put it on our Facebook page, make sure you also email it to us.
So, tweet or email us a picture of your pretty face in our shark cutout, and you could win a T-shirt! In fact, we've already got one entry, and she didn't even know we were having a contest when she posted her picture. Thanks Barbara, and good luck!
*By submitting your picture to us, you give us permission to post it on our website, blog or other social media sites. If you don't want your picture on the internet, don't send it to us.
Sandbar friend Erin posted this on Twitter this past weekend:
I spy an @thesandbar shirt at the Royal Gorge Bridge!
Of course we responded to ask if she took a picture. We assumed that someone she was with was wearing one of our shirts. But, no:
I was too afraid to ask [for a picture] but he did give me an out of breath #rockchalk!
We love this story! What a surprise that one of our customers ran into someone else wearing a Sandbar shirt outside of Kansas.
In our recent "Thoughts of a Bartender" post, one of the thoughts was "don't throw popcorn at me."
You may or may not be surprised to find that popcorn is tossed at our bartenders quite frequently.
One night, after a particularly annoying shift with a customer shouting at the bartenders all night to get their attention and throwing popcorn, Dave retaliated in a clever (yet harmless) way.
He got on Facebook.
He happened to be Facebook friends with this particular customer. We'll call her "Jan" (not her real name.)
Dave went to Jan's Facebook page and posted:
Then he waited, and posted again:
This went on for a few more posts, with each one getting longer and taking up more space on her wall.
It made Dave feel better to get some of the frustraion out of his system, even if he was only taking it out on Facebook.
The lesson here? It's either don't make the bartender mad….or don't be friends with them on Facebook.