Think it through – the Luxola Facebook contest boo-boo…
It all happened sometime last week (on the 3rd if I’m not mistaken) when this photo below was posted up on the Facebook page of local website Luxola.
They had decided to run a contest for Easter, stating that there were 16 eggs to be found on their website. The T&Cs which were stated in the image as well as the details said that the first 16 to find the Easter eggs on their website and link it on Facebook would win the product they had linked to, which looked easy enough.
However, about an hour into the contest, Luxola suddenly backtracked on their initial terms and conditions, and instead said that EVERYONE who linked their Easter eggs would be entered into a random drawing for the prize, which contradicted their initial terms as well as the details stated on the image.
Some of their comments ‘explaining’ why their terms and conditions were suddenly changed can be seen in the screenshots above (you can click on the images for larger versions). However, do note that the image is still that with the “first to link will win” line at the bottom (these posts were later deleted and the image cropped to omit the incriminatory line).
This is where I got miffed.
#1 – I can understand their panic in going “Uh oh, we didn’t anticipate so many entries in just the first hour, this contest is going to be over before we can publicise it!”, but backtracking barely an hour into the contest and justifying it by going “We want everyone to have a chance” is not being fair to the people who had already entered.
#2 – All the links to their page were open for everyone to see, ie. anyone who was on the Luxola Facebook page could see the links other people had posted and simply had to copy the link instead of searching through the website themselves. The settings were later changed by Luxola, but again, this showed a lack of thought process.
#3 – They deleted comments from members commenting on the change of terms. These comments were all attached to the image they deleted in order to re-upload the cropped image, so after responding to a couple of the comments, they just deleted the image, uploaded a new one and ignored the rest of the feedback from members. For brand management, this is a BIG no-no. You should always respond to customer feedback, even if just to offer an explanation, clarification or acknowledge the situation.
And just to be clear, I’ve got nothing against their services. I’ve ordered items from the website before and gotten exceptional service – the guy who hand-delivered my order accidentally missed out two items, but apologised profusely and was back within the hour with the remaining items.
The point I’m trying to make is that if companies like these want to run competitions, they should think things through. Furthermore, even if they did have an “oh shit” moment shortly into the contest, my current impression of them would have been a lot better if they had just honoured the first contest and perhaps run a second contest with different terms and conditions for the rest of their members instead of doing what they did, changing T&Cs halfway and leaving it at that without responding to all the comments.