Social Media Tools, Facebook

5 Staggeringly Simple Ways to Create Custom Facebook Landing Tabs

Youtility Cover transparent1 e1365439705647 5 Staggeringly Simple Ways to Create Custom Facebook Landing Tabs

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Unless you can get people to click your “like” button, your Facebook strategy will be as limp and lifeless as Matt LeBlanc’s post-Friends career.

That’s because the vast majority of consumer interactions with your brand on Facebook do not occur on your fan page, but rather on the Walls of your fans. In fact, research from Jeff Widman of Facebook fan page consultancy BrandGlue (and a presenter at Facebook Success Summit) estimates that 199 out of every 200 interactions (99.5%) come from within the news feed. This means that almost nobody is coming back to your fan page after they visit it the first time.

Think about your own behavior on Facebook. How many brands have you “liked” and then never returned? For me, it’s 137 total pages – a mixture of companies, organizations, other social media consultants, etc. How many of those pages have I visited after “liking” them initially? Essentially zero, other than grabbing screenshots for presentations.

I Like “Like”

With the exception of baking the “like” button into your website, the best way to generate new fans on Facebook is to create a custom landing tab. This means when visitors come to your Facebook page for the first time, they see a customized tabbed page, not your Wall.

For BrandGlue clients, using a custom landing tab increases conversion rate by 100% or more in almost every case.

The best news about custom landing tabs is that they are easy and inexpensive to create. Here are 5 options for creating a custom landing tab on Facebook:

Tabsite
Tabsite 296x300 5 Staggeringly Simple Ways to Create Custom Facebook Landing TabsTabsite is a Facebook application developer that specializes in giving businesses easily customizable tab pages. Tabsite allows you to create and manage the content on your custom tab as if it was a Web page or blog post, including adding multi-media. Instead of having a basic custom tab with one image, you can have multiple images, videos, text, etc.

In fact, Tabsite allows you to have up to 5 “sub-pages” that operate underneath your custom tab. You can create coupons, add supporting information, etc. as you can see in this example Tabsite from Digital Hill Multimedia.

Tabsite is free, or $5/month if you want to add a custom tab name, video, or PDFs. Tabsite is not difficult to install, but isn’t entirely obvious either. It’s best for experienced users. Also, there is no free trial at this time, and the “preview” feature is a bit cumbersome, so you may need to tweak your design and layout a few times.

North Social
North Social is a Facebook fan page application developer that maintains a large (15+) and growing stable of widgets to add horsepower to your Facebook presence. (disclosure: North Social provides free apps for the Facebook page for The NOW Revolution, my new book with Amber Naslund) In addition to photo galleries, video applications, discussion boards and other options, North Social has a custom tab creator called First Impression.

North Social’s set up and configuration process is outstanding, and customization of their apps happens exclusively within Facebook, making it fast and intuitive.

The one challenge with North Social is that if you’re only looking for a custom tab solution, it’s overkill. North Social packages their apps together for one monthly fee ($19 for the basic package). So, you get access to 15+ customizable apps for one price, but if you care primarily about just one app, it’s like swatting flies with a baseball bat.

Pagelever
pagelever 300x187 5 Staggeringly Simple Ways to Create Custom Facebook Landing TabsThis is perhaps the easiest of all custom landing tab creation options. Pagelever allows you to upload a single image and create a Welcome tab in about two minutes.

For basic functionality, Pagelever is entirely free.

The advanced version ($20 per year) includes the ability to add a “fan reveal” so that your custom tab has different messages for non-fans and fans. When a visitor clicks “like” the content automatically changes (without re-loading the page), and you can instantly thank brand-new fans and invite them to download a coupon, invite their friends, etc.

Pagelever includes a 7-day free trial for the advanced version, and you can pay via PayPal.

Splashtab
SplashTab takes a WordPress approach to custom Facebook tabs, offering customers a gallery of templates from which to select a tab layout. This is a smart approach, especially for non-designers.

The SplashTab team will fully customize a tab for you if you want to get fancy. Currently, SplashTab is $6.95/month, with a 14-day free trial. Thanks to Tamar Weinberg for the heads-up on SplashTab.

PageModo
pagemodo 300x270 5 Staggeringly Simple Ways to Create Custom Facebook Landing TabsPageModo functions similarly to SplashTab, although I find their template selection and customization interface to be a bit easier to use.

PageModo is free for personal use (fine if you’re okay with including a small powered by PageModo logo on your page). Business packages start at $9/month. PageModo wisely includes an “agency” edition that includes up to 15 customized pages for $59/month. It’s a good option for small business social media consultants and other folks being asked to create and maintain several pages.

Facebook Customization Notes

Remember that regardless of which system you use, your custom tab must be no wider than 520 pixels. Also, once your tab is completed, don’t forget to click on “Settings” on your fan page, and use the pull-down menu labeled “Default Landing Tab for Everyone Else” to select which is your landing page for non-fans.

What’s your favorite custom landing tab on Facebook? Have you created one for your page yet?

  • Anonymous

    excellent information! will keep note!

    tehtarikmemoirs.com

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WHFQKRUVMJSEFVO7L3UNR7OMCQ arti.fact

    Facebook is free. Who wants to pay tohave people view their wall if your not in business.

  • LINEXofArlington

    We at LINE-X of Arlington really like PageModo and the free version is great for now! It’s an awesome application that I would highly recommend!

  • http://twitter.com/laurenamcmullen Lauren McMullen

    Thanks for all the cool choices. I use http://fanpageengine.com which offers many templates and unlimited access for a one time fee of $67.00 and love them!

  • Tim Ludy

    I have created landing tabs for myself and others from scratch. It took a lot of scratching of the head. These sound great thanks.

  • Christina Pappas

    Thanks for the post and tools! I am actually planning to create a custom landing page for the Zmags Facebook page before the end of the year. Right now, I just changed it from the Wall to our Notes page which contains our blog. Would really like to incorporate some incentive to ‘like’ us and keep coming back!

  • Anonymous

    Hey J.B., great info…as usual.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dave-Allen/1110152144 Dave Allen

    Nice article. I’ve been intrigued for some time about how well the ‘Like’ button performs especially as my own actions suggest that to ‘Like’ is to pass on by as it were, a kind of digital window shopping activity. I expanded those thoughts recently with the help of two digital strategists, here’s the link – Facebook Likes Are Not Engaging http://www.north.com/html/index.php/latest/facebook-likes-are-not-engaging/

  • Anonymous

    Great post Jay!
    Looking forward to checking out ALL of these resources.
    Time to get in the weeds and do some hands-on evaluation.
    Thanks again.

  • http://twitter.com/GarrettIra Garrett Ira

    Your comment about 99.5% of people not coming back to the fan page after clicking “like” is so important. Interactions happen in the news feed, not on the fan page itself. This is why the one landing page is usually the only custom page you need.

    I’d also add that when a page first launches, it’s a good idea to give some kind of incentive for “liking” the page to increase conversions. For example, providing a free eBook for a B2B company or entering into a contest for a B2C company. You can do this by making certain content only appear to those who “like” the page, as you mentioned is provided by pagelever.

    Great post, thanks.

  • http://twitter.com/digitalng Nancy Garcia

    In terms of my own behavior, more often than not, I don’t return to a Facebook business page after clicking Like the first time. I agree – it’s smart and efficient to convert upon entrance. The first time you walk into an IRL retailer or local business, for example, there is product or a person there to greet you immediately. Whatever it is that you sell (tickets to shows, products, services), it’s a missed opportunity if you don’t put this stuff upfront – at your Facebook page’s front door, the custom landing tab.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=518631962 Mike Gingerich

    Jay, we appreciate the mention of TabSite! With the Pro version you can actually have unlimited sub-pages (including your blog, twitter and more). We offer custom designs as well and customized tools like the automatic product sync for Da-Lite Screen Company that pulls their products from their website and gives Fan Page users a custom layout of products on the Fan Page.

  • http://twitter.com/tmatte63 Tom Matte

    Thanks Jay! Talk about perfect timing. We are meeting today to review a Facebook campaign and strategy options. This will definitely help with our call to action. Does any one know if BrandGlue offers similar services as the Facebook Marketing Bible? We need to pick a partner and I would love to hear feedback.

  • http://www.businessinsanity.com Shane Petty

    We use Static520 (http://static520.com) for our Freedom Rewards (facebook.com/freedomrewards) page and it’s pretty straightforward with excellent instructions. Free 2-week trial and $19/year with everything hosted for you.

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  • Anonymous

    Jay, great post. These services are great for easy to launch, “one off” custom tabs — especially for SMBs. However, there is also an “enterprise” market for these services, something we provide at Buddy Media. We recently partnered with WPP as their preferred Facebook Management System and work with 300+ large brands.

    http://www.buddymedia.com/newsroom/2010/10/wpp-and-buddy-media-launch-strategic-partnership-wpp-digital-invests-5m-in-buddy-media/

    Large brands especially need a platform where they can control content publishing, moderation, permissions, analytics, etc. all from one dashboard, in any language supported by Facebook. Would love to give you the “under the hood” view when you have some time!

    Cheers,
    Joe Ciarallo
    Director of Communications – Buddy Media
    joe.ciarallo@buddymedia.com

  • Michelle Scott

    Very useful article, and well-written.

  • Michelle Scott

    Very useful article, and well-written.

  • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

    Definitely. I love what you guys do at Buddy. I’d like to write a
    follow-up on Enterprise class options.

  • http://www.BersonDeanStevens.com Lori Berson

    Thanks Jay! Great info…very timely and helpful. We’re in the middle of implementing Facebook promotions for several clients. Much appreciated!

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  • Anonymous

    Nice review for Facebook tools Jay! Our organization is in the process of developing custom Facebook pages for physicians. This should prove to be very valuable. I’ll let you know how we succeed. -Mark @BtoBSocialMedia

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=21900474 Dan Ptak

    Hi Jay,

    What about the Static FBML App – create tabs using essentially HTML…and it’s free! More info here: http://mashable.com/2010/02/22/build-facebook-landing-page/

    Thanks!

    Dan Ptak
    Marketing Coordinator, Simply Postcards App
    http://www.simplypostcards.net

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      Yes. I thought about that, and almost included it here. I’m presuming, however, that many of the marketing folks that read C&C, aren’t well-versed enough in HTML to take a stab at that approach. I appreciate you pointing it out though. A good solution.

  • http://twitter.com/Boones6433 Heather Coleman

    Great post! My biggest recommendation on creating a Welcome Tab or Facebook landing page is the call to action – tell people to “like” your page. That at least gives you the opportunity to get your content in front of them in the future. I just wrote a similar blog post on GovLoop about the U.S. Army’s Facebook landing page – http://www.govloop.com/profiles/blogs/introducing-this-is-govable I think it’s one that competes with private industry pretty well.

  • http://www.facebook.com/blairevanbball Blair Evan Ball

    Hi Jay,
    Appreciate your insight, sharing of this information and resources. It makes us be better at what we do. The percentage of conversion by using a landing tab was much higher than I would have predicted. Change in strategy coming.
    A more puzzling question to answer would be…how to change behavior to return to your page, repeatedly.

    All the best,
    http://www.prepare1.com

    Blair

  • http://www.3hatscommunications.com davinabrewer

    Thanks for this list of Facebook tools, nice to see some of the basic functionality is free which makes them great for small business. It’s good to adapt and improve the fan page, keep folks interested as well as have better ways to share info with them, have them interact. Will look into some of these for sure.

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  • http://filesrush.com/tgxkcrpuavtz/How_to_make_money_with_a_blog.pdf.html Michael R. Douglas

    Thank i wanted to do this for a long time thanks!

  • http://twitter.com/debbiemeltzer Debbie meltzer

    Thank you, there were terrific tips.
    Found it very useful

  • http://ebusinessmarketingservices.net Business Marketing Services

    Thanks for the list. It’s good to know that I don’t have to be an FBML expert to create these tabs!

  • Media

    I have been needing tools like this for some time. The social media mountain has overwhelmed me though and I didn’t even have the presence of mind to think there could be development tools like this. So, I never even looked for them until I found pagemodo yesterday. That led (or is it lead?) me here. THANK YOU!!! I’ll be wading through the pricing and features and choosing one of them. Did I say thank you? Thank you.

    Mike

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      You’re welcome Mike. Also check my post on 39 social media tools I
      use. Just search “39″ above.

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  • http://twitter.com/Shoutlet Shoutlet

    Custom tabs are crucial for giving visitors a unique experience. As previously mentioned, there are enterprise-level tools out there that make tab creation dead simple and provide larger social teams with a centralized dashboard for managing and tracking multiple fan pages. Shoutlet is one of them: drag-and-drop, no-FBML-required custom tab creation, easy reveal tab and Shop tab creation, plus Social CRM, which streamlines Facebook conversation management.

    It’s nice to see that more and more marketers are no longer limited by their tech/development skills. Now the main hurdle is concept and content development, which is equally (if not more) important for engaging with customers on Facebook.

    Jason Weaver
    CEO, Shoutlet

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  • Rriggins

    Can anyone provide examples of well designed Facebook landing pages?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FHCAK4VK3VAHXN47UTUGFWSGIE JONATHAN

      Here are some good examples, all powered by North Social. just go on facebook and search. hope they help
      -Jack Link’s Beef Jerky
      -Thumbplay
      -Yanni (musician)
      -Paint the Moon Photography
      -Freestyle U.S.A

  • MidasBrand logo design

    Thanks for the list, i just created a page for my new logo design site http://www.midasbrand.com and can definitely use the functionality that these apps offer.

  • http://www.shortstacklab.com/ FBUser

    I have been using this great application called ShortStack for creating tabs. I have checked out other tab builders like North Social and I feel like their biggest draw back is that you have to have multiple tabs for each element that you want to show. ShortStack lets you put everything that you want under one tab so that my fans are more likely to view things like my blog, twitter feed and Yelp reviews since they are all in one space. I also have the ability to set viewing permissions so that when nonfans come to my page they have to become a fan in order to see fan only content. This helps in driving my fan count up and it also allows me to give special deal and promos to just my fans so that they will keep coming back to my page and into my business. You should check them out and see what you think.

    http://www.shortstacklab.com/

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      Cool. I’m going to check it out. Thanks.

  • http://prevailpr.com/ San Luis Obispo Marketing

    Pagelever is great and if you know the short codes, embedding your own pics and vids isn’t much harder than using these services. Great roundup nonetheless.

  • http://productblog.rpdata.com Mike Salway

    Now that FBML is being deprecated, are they any tools out there for creating iFrame welcome ‘tabs’ ? What size does the page have to be?

  • http://productblog.rpdata.com Mike Salway

    Now that FBML is being deprecated, are they any tools out there for creating iFrame welcome ‘tabs’ ? What size does the page have to be?

  • http://productblog.rpdata.com Mike Salway

    Now that FBML is being deprecated, are they any tools out there for creating iFrame welcome ‘tabs’ ? What size does the page have to be?

  • http://productblog.rpdata.com Mike Salway

    Now that FBML is being deprecated, are they any tools out there for creating iFrame welcome ‘tabs’ ? What size does the page have to be?

  • Julie Marcoux

    Does anyone know how to change a Facebook fan page banner? Furthermore, does anyone know how to make a banner that won’t change randomly?

  • http://www.creativepiranha.com Renika

    Hi everyone, I am a newbie and I would like to know how I can do all of these wonderful things – but add it to my Fan Page and NOT my personal FB Profile..?

  • JobelleLLaten

    thank you for sharing these simple ways to create custom facebook landing tabs, very informative and helps me a lot. thanks again

    http://bit.ly/BCFPT

  • letstalkandchat

    If you’re looking for webinar software, then check out Evergreen Business System. Its perfect for marketers and let’s you automate the scheduling of your webinars, build your list, and even follow up with your webinar registrants. If you’re going to buy Evergreen Business System, then you might as well get a free bonus! So check out http://www.mikelmurphy.com/evergreen-business-system-bonus-webinar-software/ and you’ll get a great bonus that tells you how to create a webinar, what is a webinar, and a blueprint for making a successful one. None of the other people offering bonuses are offering this. Hurry in case the guy (some dude that worked on Lord of the RIngs) offering the bonus decides to pull it down.

  • http://www.phpzag.com/ phpzag

    Cool. I’m going to check it out. Thanks.