An App for Your Facebook Contests

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(Publishers note: Here at Dealer Marketing Magazine, we recently heard about a new Facebook App that allows auto dealers to run Facebook contests and still comply with Facebook contest rules. We requested that the creator of the App, Ben Brigham of AutoFerret write us a case study of how a dealer is using the App.)

Gary Crossley Ford in Kansas City continues to be an industry leader in many ways. One example of their leadership has been the way they have leveraged their social media, in particular Facebook, to help drive attention and new “friends” to the dealership. Last month, Gary Crossley Ford gave away a pair of tickets to watch the Kansas City Chiefs play the Minnesota Vikings at Arrowhead Stadium. They called the promotion “Score Big” and the purpose was to create interaction with their Facebook page. The results of the promotion was over 800 Facebook ‘Likes’—a significant increase over the previous month, nearly 25,000 post views, an increase in post feedback of 271 percent, and 18 new Facebook Recommendations—all of this over a period of three weeks. The dealership also found that the ‘Likes’ and feedback driven by the “Score Big” promotion came from people that live in the area where the dealership sells cars, who have some connection to the dealership.

As a member of the VinSolutions Dealer Advisory Board, Gary Crossly Ford received an advance copy of’s new Facebook Contest App, which was used to build the “Score Big” campaign and will now be available to all VinSolutions dealers in October. As seen by the Gary Crossley Ford’s success, this new contest app integrates deeply with the Facebook experience, allowing users to share, comment and vote—right along with their friends, family, and local automobile dealership. It promotes social interaction around the dealership and promises to help businesses interact with their customers in more meaningful ways.

When asked about the success of the first contest, Todd Crossley, General Manager of Gary Crossley Ford said, “It is amazing to see how this Contest App changed the traffic to our Facebook page this month. The traffic created excitement throughout the dealership! We talked to customers about the promotion and many of them went home to post and register for the promotion. With our ‘Score Big’ contest, we’re finally seeing the merging of social media traffic and real customer interaction on the showroom.”

The theme and prize for each contest is customizable and multiple contests can be run simultaneously on the same Facebook page. To enter, contestants simply “like” the dealer’s page, enter their name and upload their photo. Visitors to the page can enter, vote, “like,” and comment on photos in the contest. The dealership may review and approve each entry and comment before it is posted to their page. Contestants can then share their entry on their wall and ask their friends to vote for them. In order to vote, people are asked to “like” the dealership page. At the end of the contest, the entry with the most votes will win the prize.

When asked about the process that led to the development of the new Facebook Contest App, Ben Brigham, president of had this to say: “Our clients asked us to build something that would help their dealers build ‘likes’ from real people in their local market, and this is the result of a lot of thought and discussion around that idea. We released the first Inventory Widget for Facebook back in 2008, which was cool, because it allowed dealers to display their current inventory on their Facebook page. Since then, we have developed a whole suite of other Facebook Apps for auto dealers, including the Reputation Monitor and Web Leads Apps, but none have produced this type of almost-immediate results for our dealers. Over the past couple of years, Facebook has built up a lot of sizzle for auto dealers: this new app brings the steak!”

Todd Crossley added, “This app and the custom promotions are something we will use over and over again to drive Facebook traffic to the dealership!”

Ben Brigham is the president of and a recognized social media expert. He can be reached at 888-633-7738 or email



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