By SHIFT Staff
As more companies and brands build out their Facebook presence, they are finding it important to differentiate themselves and their pages with custom content. Custom tabs are a great way to share unique and valuable content with your Facebook fans. There are a number of ways to build custom Facebook tabs:
- Downloading 3rd party applications on Facebook.com
- Manually coding custom tabs using FBML
- Utilizing 3rd party Facebook marketing technology platforms like Involver.
Involver describes itself as “complete brand marketing” for Facebook. And with over 20 different applications, the customization opportunities are vast. However, for this review, we are going to focus on the “Free and Basic Applications,” which are limited to 2 per account. We have selected a Twitter feed and RSS feed for our new custom tabs courtesy of Involver. The setup and installation for these applications was incredibly simple.
Once you enter the “Application Gallery,” you are shown all the available applications for each type of account; Free and Basic, Pro, or Premium. If you are unsure which application you would like to install, Involver gives you a short summary of what the application will include and also provides a screenshot so you can visualize what the tab will look like.
To install, you simply click the “install” button, which will redirect you to Facebook where you are then prompted to select which Facebook page (if you are an administrator of more than one page) you would like to add the application to. Once you’ve selected the page, you are asked to share the Twitter account that you want to be connected to Facebook, or in the case of the RSS, the URL feed that you want integrated with the Facebook page. And that’s it; your custom tabs are setup!
- Simple setup and installation
- Good options for free custom applications:
- RSS, Twitter,YouTube, Flickr, Photo Gallery, File Sharing, Slides, PDF’s, Promotions Gallery
- Clean, professional look
- Very basic functionality
- Limited customization/branding
- Only able to integrate one Twitter account, Blog RSS, Flickr account, etc. with page
- Limit to 2 custom tabs
With Facebook becoming a more primary marketing tool, technology platforms like Involver can really help brands to enhance their Facebook pages. Involver is far easier than custom FBML coding, and a lot cleaner and professional looking than most of the free applications available on Facebook. However, the free version does have very limited functionality and customization. We would give the Involver Free and Basic applications 4 out of 5 slices. Because with anything that’s free, there is always a catch.
For an example of and Involver Premium Service page, see the Facebook Fan Page for Us Weekly: