7 top tips for creating a good Facebook app

When thinking about building a brand Facebook page it can be all too easy to jump straight in and create a flashy app that promises to bring in fans by the bucketload. This sort of approach rarely bears fruit, and can end up leading to expensive apps lying unloved and un-engaged with on the brands page.

The below example, (excuse the brandname which gets lost in translation) is a really nice example of well developed idea, appealing to users habits/desires and coming out of listening to existing conversations and behaviours and tapping into them.

Here is a brief checklist to go through before creating your app:

1) Make it relevant to your audience – think about what are they doing on Facebook and listen to their conversations to pick up on their interactions.
2) Don’t force behaviour – linked to the above but keep the barrier to entry as low as possible.
3) Make it your default tab for newbies – but don’t forget to promote clearly on the wall or with a message to your existing fans!
4) Make it shareable! Adding the share button will allow users to pass on to their friends – but remember the actual number will be variable.
5) Promote on/in your other properties, e.g. Twitter/marketing emails/even email signatures and don’t be afraid to re-promo!
6) Advertise it! Sadly in Social Media the best things aren’t free so don’t expect your content to fly without promoting it. ‘Advertise’ both for free on the wall, but also with app ads, and give it some social context, showing users which of their friends is already using the app.
7) Add a contest element or a reason to follow up. Some of the best FB apps lead to an end date e.g. Your face on a billboard in time square. This helps us in the eventual goal which is usually to turn occasional visitors into engaged fans and hopefully brand advocates.

Follow these and you can’t go wrong.

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Pink Ponies Case Study

Proving that social really is ‘child’s play’ Toronto based agency, john st. shows off their ability to successfully create word of mouth in a cluttered toy market.

Evidently Kids LOVE a sleepover, oh and Justin Bieber songs must have helped too!

Got trends? 15 predictions for 2011

I would argue that a lot of these may already have ‘arrived’ which makes this more of a round-up of the past year than a true prediction, but a handy list of predominantly ‘social’ marketing practices nonetheless.

The digital story of the nativity…Biggest viral success of the season

How social media, web and mobile tell the story of the Nativity.
Christmas story told through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, Wikipedia, Google Maps, GMail, Foursquare, Amazon…

Times change, the feeling remains the same.