Facebook is the Darling
Facebook is the social media and soon-to-be stock market darling. While other social media platforms have gotten a lot of buzz, Facebook has captured serious attention from brands, marketers, app developers and investors because there’s a lot of money being made on the platform – and people expect this to continue.
The platform requires some effort (and investment)
Of course, Facebook requires work. Not only do companies need to develop and promote their Fan Pages, but Facebook’s ever-evolving technical specs require repeated attention and occasional rework.
The Facebook ecosystem and the army of app developers
While some social media platforms are fairly self-contained, Facebook has a symbiotic relationship with an army of application (“app”) developers who add significant value to the platform…and who, in turn, are able to reap some of the benefits of Facebook’s growth.
Necessary for Facebook success
It turns out that, in order to succeed in Facebook, companies need access to the advanced capabilities that apps provide. These apps help companies customize their Fan Pages, to add custom “Tabs” (or pages) and to add advanced capabilities via specialized apps such as video players, contests, fan-only content, email opt-in forms, or integrations with other social media platforms like Pinterest and Twitter.
How do you sort through the options?
There are thousands of apps available that do a variety of tasks required (or desired) by individuals or companies. In fact, because there’s no highly controlled “app store”, a la Apple, it can be pretty hard to find apps that deliver the most important elements. Searching on Google makes this task nearly impossible and searching on Facebook is almost as bad.
With that in mind, I did some research, checked with members of the Facebook #Toolschat group, did some testing, and came up with this set of Facebook Fan Page Design and Customization application options. I’ve included a video with each so you can get a flavor for their application – as told by the company themselves. I tried to find a video that included information about post-Timeline functionality. I also included some basics on pricing and whether they have a free option or not.
The 8 Facebook Fan Page Design Applications
So here are the eight options. Let me know in the comments which ones you use, what you like/don’t like about them and any others that you’d suggest. They are in no particular order.
PageModo is one of the options that I’ve experimented with. When I was working with it, it had some fairly robust and attractive templates. Things change fast, so I’m sure they have even more options available now for you to try out. They have a free option and paid plans start at $6.25/month.
Visit PageModo here.
Lujure has a free option available and plans start at $30/month. This company is getting a lot of buzz and in addition to their free option, they just released their less expensive version (the one at ~$30/month).
Visit Lujure here.
Shortstack is the company that several people mentioned when I asked for a favorite Fan Page app in the #Toolchat group that I’m a member of. Shortstack has a free option available and plans start at $15/month.
Visit Shortstack here.
Tabsite is the custom tab application that I’ve experimented with the most. It worked well for my earlier needs and has a free option available (with some limits to the functionality, like most free versions of apps have). Paid plans start at $5/month.
Visit Tabsite here.
Dojo is a late entry that was recommended by one of my contacts. I liked the look of it – have a look for yourself! There’s a free option for pages with less than 200 fans. Paid plans start at $19.95 per month.
Visit Dojo here.
6) North Social
North Social is a popular Facebook application development company that has both standard packages (with several options) and custom fan page options. For their standard platform, they have a 14 day free trial available and the paid plans start at $19.99/month.
Visit North Social here.
Which one are you using?
Which option are you using to add interactivity and functionality to your business page? Let me know in the comments what you like/don’t like about the ones you’ve used and feel free to mention other ones that you consider to be worthwhile options.
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Tom Treanor is the founder of the Right Mix Marketing blog. He’s the author of the Search Engine Boot Camp, the co-author of Online Business Productivity, and regularly speaks at industry and corporate events. His writing has been featured on the Content Marketing Institute, Social Media Examiner, Copyblogger and other leading industry blogs.