There are thousands of Apps in the Facebook App Directory that Nonprofit Admins could experiment with on your organization’s Facebook Page, but below I have highlighted my five favorite Apps to get you started:
1. The Static FBML App
The Static FMBL App is the most important App on Facebook for Nonprofit Admins to master. It allows you to add new boxes to your page that can include text, links, and images as long as you have a basic working knowledge of HTML (View HTML Tip Sheet for Nonprofit Organizations). It will also allow you to create super, duper fancy Facebook Tabs, such as the “Get Involved!” Tab on the Special Olympics of Northern California Facebook Page, if you have access to and a working knowledge of Dreamweaver and Photoshop.
At the very least, Nonprofit Admins that spend a couple of hours teaching themselves the basics of HTML should be able to use this App to add a “Donate Now” button to their page [Example: Amazon CARES] and/or an e-mail newsletter sign up box, mobile sign up box, and Web 2.0 icons [Example: World Wildlife Fund].
2. Causes App
The Causes App allows nonprofits to fundraise on Facebook. Your organization must be in GuideStar.org for you to be able to use Causes. Donations are processed by Network for Good and JustGive.org, and this App only works for nonprofits in the United States and Canada.
Causes had quite a bit of buzz within the nonprofit community when it first came out, but when fundraising results were not all that great compared to “Donate Now” fundraising, some nonprofits moved on. But recently, Causes has been making quite a few upgrades and launching some new tools, so I think they they deserve a second look. If your nonprofit has never used Causes, you can create a Cause and then add it to your organization’s Facebook Page [Example: Latin America Working Group]. Tip: Causes is super difficult to get on your page if you create it as a person from your personal profile on Facebook. Make sure you have clicked on your Facebook Page first, shifting you into Facebook Admin mode, and then go to the App to create your Cause.
3. Involver Apps
Involver is a new start-up that has some pretty amazing Apps that you can very easily add to your organization’s Facebook Page. Your first two Apps are free to install and if you want to later upgrade they do offer nonprofit and multi-account discounts. I recently added the Twitter and YouTube Apps to the Nonprofit Organizations Facebook Page. The Apps allow you to then create Twitter” and “YouTube” Tabs on your Facebook Page that pull in and nicely display all your Tweets and videos from Twitter and YouTube.
4. Social RSS App
This is the absolute only time I advocate for automation between social media sites. The Social RSS App allows you to integrate your Blog posts or news feeds into your organization’s Facebook Page automatically. The App updates on a daily basis and can be featured as both a Tab on your Facebook Page as well as box [Example: Nonprofit Organizations Facebook Page].
5. Links App
The Links App is a native Facebook App, meaning it was created by Facebook and comes already installed on most Facebook Pages, yet many Nonprofit Admins do not utilize this App. Basically it allows you to attach a link to a Status Update by clicking the little Note with a Thumbtack graphic directly underneath the Status Update box. This is where the vast majority of ROI [Return on Investment] comes from on Facebook, so make sure you use it! Link videos, your website, you Twitter profile, etc. Anything you post then shows up on your Page and in the News Feed of your fans.