If the prospect of developing a custom app to your Facebook Fan Page gives you the shakes, worry not. There are a lot of apps that you can add to extend the functionality of your page with a few clicks of the mouse.
A fundamental point to remember is that you cannot control where people find you on the Internet. People are probably not going to your website on a regular basis. That’s why we always encourage photographers to create presences on websites where their potential clients might be congregating online. For a few hundred million people, Facebook is one of those places. But Facebook isn’t necessarily the best place to present what you do, nor engage a potential client to the fullest. So using your Fan Page as a springboard to other content can be a doorway to more engaging content.
In that respect, a good app will be 1) easy to integrate, 2) extend the functionality of your page, and 3) direct users to more content off Facebook.
Here are a few apps that we like to extend functionality.
The Twitter app allows you to integrate your Twitter feed into your Page, and add a “Follow” button. It’s a great way to automate live updates along with a prominent call-to-action. See how FlakPhoto integrates Twitter here: http://www.facebook.com/flakphoto?sk=app_53267368995
In the past few years, video has taken on a different meaning to photographers. Before the rise of video-enabled DSLRs, most photographers created movies that were essentially slideshows. Nowadays, we are seeing actual video, but not how you’d expect. Photographers are creating promos of themselves as a way to market themselves.
We’ve enabled the Vimeo app on the PhotoShelter Fan Page to share our recorded webinars and video help.
If you haven’t already considered using an Email Service Provider to manage your newsletters (you do have one, right?), MailChimp is a great service to help you with list management, send & open statistics, and more. Best of all, you can add their app to your Facebook page to capture emails of your visitors.
Grab their email address with a “Sign up for my newsletter” form and consider enticing them with a coupon or discount off their first purchase. You can create a coupon in your PhotoShelter account. Nico Morgan uses MailChimp on his Page.
The job of the professional photographer doesn’t end with the shutter closing. You need to constantly market yourself to your audience, and try to convert them into paying users. Facebook is a great way to increase interaction, but don’t fall into the trap of merely showing your work, and having a few online exchanges. Instead, create visible calls to action, and try to move each customer further down the road of completing a sale.