The following is a post on Facebook tabs and pages, and their use in social media marketing by Brabble CEO and Founder Patrick Mackaronis.
If you are in business or promoting a non-profit organization you probably use Facebook for personal and professional networking. Using a Fan Page on Facebook to promote your company or group is a common way to introduce and maintain relationships with “fans” of your business.
A crop of new technology startups are competing for the privilege of providing you a way to easily create custom Facebook tabs and pages. Let’s look at a few of the companies offering custom Facebook tabs for your company Fan page. None of the applications reviewed here provide customized personal pages, these are strictly for businesses, groups and organizations.
These cloud based solutions connect with your Facebook Fan page(s) and allow you to create and add one or more new custom Tabs and Pages. Some of these applications allow you to use your new custom page for your Facebook landing page. This means when new visitors arrive at your Fan page, they see a customized page, and not your “Wall”.
Facebook Tabs, Many Pages with TabSite
TabSite allows you to create and manage content on one custom tab,per account. One simple template page gives most users the tools they’ll need to design a graphic and link heavy page. The custom facebook page can include have images, videos, and text. Online help is minimal, but email support response is good.
One of the interesting and different aspects of TabSite vs it’s competitors, is the ability to create sub-tabbed pages on the main TabSite page. Each sub-page can have its own custom tab and contain linked buttons, graphics, video, text and more.
TabSite offers a free version that does not expire, but also does not allow you to give the Tab a custom name. Even with the free version it does allow you to create a custom page with the name “Welcome” or “TabSite.”
Subscriptions start at $5/month if you want to add a tab with a custom name. TabSite is not difficult to use but does require some knowledge of HTML, web site design, and basic internet applications.
SplashTab Offers Many Page Layouts
SpalshTab offers a 14-day free trial to try out their service. Unlike TabSite which gives you unlimited page design freedom and no templates, SpashTab gives you many template choices, meaning preformatted pages where you fill in the areas with video, text, graphics and links. The Premium subscription allows you to create your on page layout or template if you can’t find a template that suits your needs.
The Tab names are limited to those on a menu list. There are enough to match up to most common page content, and if you must have a custom Tab name they will do that for an additional fee.
Each account or SplashTab is for one Facebook Fan page only. Additional custom Fan pages require their own paid accounts for each Fan page. Some templates contain buttons or links that require a secondary subscription but do not alert you to that prior to selecting the template. Online help is virtually non-existent on the website, but you can send a message to tech-support.
SplashTab is easy to use with the same level of skill as TabSite, and the templates are very useful and make creating a custom Facebook page fast and easy.
Widgets Galore at NorthSocial
NorthSocial is another new and very slick Facebook Custom Tab and Page application that offers a 14 day trial. NorthSocial differs from the others in offering multiple pre-made apps that are added to a custom page with a couple of clicks. NorthSocial offers everything from customizable sweepstakes, contact, and product pages called “Show & Sell” which links directly with your shopping cart. In addition you can plug in photo galleries, video applications, rating and discussion modules.
Set up and configuration is only a few clicks, which connects NorthSocial with your Facebook account. Subscriptions start at $19 a month. How-to videos are available for each application without having to log in, so you can get a very good idea of what’s involved before signing up.
With the free accounts and trial subscriptions you could give each of these a try and see which best meets your needs. Each application has a strength that distinguishes it from its competitors. Compare and decide which has the features most important to your social network marketing strategy.
Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.