A Guide to Facebook Apps for Business Pages

A Guide to Facebook Apps for Business PagesIf you haven’t heard by now, you’ve surely been living under a rock for the past few years: Social media is a powerful business tool!  Unfortunately, although you’ll hear that tag line over and over again, no one seems to know exactly how to harness the monumental potential of sites like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Pinterest, and all the rest.

The advice changes daily, and the experts are always latching onto some new aspect of these social sites that will supposedly be the fortune-making wave of the future.  At the moment, Facebook apps seem to be the hot topic floating around on the web.  Unfortunately, despite what you may have heard, social apps are by no means going to be your key to early retirement.  The good news, however, is that they can be helpful.

How to Implement Apps

At their very best, Facebook apps are efficiency tools. They help you use social media more effectively and take more complete advantage of its potential. So don’t look for sensational results from apps, but do utilize them to refine and streamline your business’ social media campaign. This means using apps to help in three primary categories: networking, marketing, and timesaving.

Don’t Sell on Social Media!

A Guide to Facebook Apps for Business PagesThis is the most important advice businesses can get when it comes to social networking.  Social sites are not sales platforms, nor do they resemble traditional advertising in any way.  Facebook is essentially a device for generating popularity: a way of gathering ‘Fans’ and ‘Friends’. Using apps for direct sales is counter-productive in many ways.

First, apps take users off the Facebook platform and into a third-party void that inspires nothing but security concerns and tightly clamped wallets. Second, apps require users to join up and share information, so they are often perceived as invasive from the very start––not a good way to initiate sales.  Finally, take a look at the most popular apps and you’ll immediately see something that doesn’t add up for businesses: most are games.  Unless your business is a Facebook app (like FarmVille), don’t expect to make money from them.

Effective Apps to Consider

Sales aside, there are certainly a few apps out there you might want to incorporate into your social media strategy:

  • BranchOut is a resume community: Good for connecting with job seekers, and a useful avenue for freelancers to advertise their services.
  • For businesses with a presence on Pinterest, the Pinterest App links your account to Facebook, making it more visible and increasing traffic.
  • NutShellMail is an effective solution for those who spend too much time procrastinating on Facebook when there is work to be done.  By sending alerts to your email inbox, it helps you spend less time logged in to FB.
  • Livestream is a great app for streaming live video of business events or promotional content
  • SurveyMonkey is an effective market research tool that promotes fan engagement
  • ContactMe puts a professional contact form on your Facebook business page

The recent stir about social apps for business was provoked by the latest Facebook layout update, which gave them a more prominent place in the interface.  But these tools are still no more useful than the platform supporting them.  They must be viewed through the same lens as Facebook itself.  Apps––like the social media sites that contain them––have no explicit profit potential.  They must be incorporated as part of a larger strategy and utilized creatively.

About the author: Kirsten Hendrich works for whoishostingthis.com, a hosting company rating and review site. Her role in the company means helping a wide range of businesses get online to reach a wider audience. 

Image Credit: syadoo24

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2 Responses

  1. andrew says:

    Hi. You can find a lot of free & paid apps for your business Facebook Page at www.facebookappdirectory.com

  2. Ian Smith says:

    Good post Kirsten – straight to the point “Unless your business is a Facebook app (like FarmVille), don’t expect to make money from them.”
    All-too-often, we read about the next best idea and how we should all adopt it. The same applies to apps.

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