We’re starting off our “Social Media Palooza” series of articles with a simple one: making a Facebook fan page and setting up an iFrame app. I’ll insert the video here and then I’ll talk about a few strategies and caveats below.
I know most of you probably already knew what a fan page was and how to create one, so I went through that in a hurry. What was probably less well known was the concept of an iframe app for your Facebook fanpage. iFrame apps have been getting a lot of talk recently as people are getting better and better at using them. Basically, an iFrame app lets you make a mini webpage inside of a bigger webpage.
After I shot this video, I went to Lizzy’s Facebook page and tried to pretty up her default page. If you check it out here, you’ll see I added a teaser to encourage people to like her page. The page contains the text “click the like for specials,” her latest book trailer, a real short blurb about her, four book covers, a link to Lizzy’s twitter, a link to this site and a form for people to join our mailing list. THAT is a busy page. It was a pain in the butt to do, but it’s done. When we make sites for her series, I’ll have a nice template to start with that just needs a few tweaks.
After I made the page, I made it the default “Welcome” page for those who haven’t yet liked Lizzy’s author page. I then saved a second copy of the page that appears as soon as someone likes the page. This second page contains everything the initial welcome page contains – with the addition of a link to Lizzy’s free books. So if someone new goes to our site, they see the default welcome page. Once they click “like”, the page reloads with the link to the free books added.
Note: After the initial time someone “likes” your page, they will automatically go to your “wall” tab every time they visit your fan page. There’s apparently nothing you can do to change that. What you can change is the default setting where people will end up if they happen upon your fan page and haven’t liked it yet.
Your design doesn’t have to look anything like ours. I just wanted to touch on the capability of rewarding people who “like” the fan page by providing bonus content (YouTube videos, new book covers, links, chapter/excerpts, etc.) that will likely be of interest to them. This is a great incentive for people to like your page. If nothing else, fans will recieve your announcements and you may hook them with something at a later date. If you come up with a great idea, let me know!
One caveat is as of October 1st, Facebook makes any iFrame app – that links to external content – use a SSL connection. If you have no idea what that means, you’re not alone. 🙂 It just means that Facebook now mandates the same type of security that banks and other online shopping places use and your pictures, videos etc. need to use HTTPS instead of HTTP. When you embed a YouTube video, do the same thing you’ve always done, just look for a little “use HTTPS” link right below the code it gives you to copy and paste. Check that box and it modifies the link for you.
If you want to use a picture in your iframe app, you need to host it somewhere that will let you access it using SSL. There is a 100% free site which let’s you do this easily at freevps.us/img/ . Pictures and movies will suffice for most people, but if you want to add the functionality that only a HTML file will provide then you’re going to have to create it and host it someplace with SSL or pay to have someone do it for you. It should just be a one time charge. Either way, post your new fan page here when you’re done so I can check it out!
Hopefully the tech terms didn’t end this post on a sour note. Even if you don’t feel like dealing with any of these issues, the video shows how quick and easy it is to make an iframe app for your fan page, and offer something to entice some “likes.” As always, feel free to post any questions or comments.