By Kristen Lucas
Third party apps have become a necessity on Facebook in recent times. People use them for many different purposes, including entertainment, competitions, and to make Facebook more efficient for their use.
What Is A Third Party App?
A third party app is an application made by a separate vendor that’s not Facebook; the third party application includes updates or improvements to Facebook’s current system or different and new features. You can find a page’s apps in the designated sections on their profile.
Facebook is an important marketing tool for brands to have, but in order for it to be most effective, brands need to be creative and engaging with their audience. This can mean talking to them, but often times it means running competitions, or trying to get conversions of different sorts directly through Facebook.
Previously, Facebook had limitations on running competitions, and it wasn’t possible to do so on the wall. If you did and Facebook found out, there was the possibility that they would shut down your account. Third party apps provided a way to run competitions that were within Facebook’s guidelines.
Other options for third party apps include allowing you to connect to your other social media platforms such as Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter, get people to sign up for your mailing list, and display your products, among other things.
One of the most popular uses for third party applications is running competitions. It has only been recently that Facebook changed their promotional rules to allow for competitions to be run on the wall. Before that, they were only allowed to be run through third party applications, and even though Facebook is now allowing them directly on people’s pages, third party apps are still the better choice.
One of the benefits of hosting competitions on third party pages is better branding. Using an application allows you to tailor the competition images and details to represent your brand as best as you can, and to be visually creative.
You also get more variety in terms of the competitions you can run. Rather than only being able to run a like or comment competition, you can get creative with your entry mechanisms. People can send in photo entries, write long answer entries, or simply enter their email address.
It’s easier for participants to share the competition and get other people involved. Facebook doesn’t allow you to ask people to share a wall competition in order to enter. When you use a third party app, it suggests to the person who has entered that they share it on their wall and makes it very simple for them, making the process easier and meaning people are more likely to share.
Wall posts are great for increasing your engagement stats (and we love engagement!), but engagement isn’t always the end goal. If you want to build your brand’s database, a third party app will help you to do that.
Where To Start?
There are many different third party app providers out there, so it’s a matter of finding which one suits you. Many of the companies will provide a free trial, so you can see if they provide what you’re after.
Some apps are made specifically to achieve one goal, such as linking to your social media platforms. These are simply connected and installed, and the job’s done. Others, such as for running competitions, are a service that allows you to build your own app.
Depending on what you want to achieve, start searching online, and you’re sure to discover many options.