Facebook Launches Fan Box, Its First Official Widget

Here's What it Means for Marketers

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Ian Schafer
Ian Schafer
Yesterday Facebook launched the Fan Box, yet another way to extend what you're doing on Facebook to elsewhere on the web.

Think of the Fan Box as a widget (four simple lines of code) that Facebook-page administrators can implement on other sites to enhance connectivity to their Facebook pages. In a nutshell:

  • Brands can use the Fan Box to recruit new fans in a more engaging way than just posting a link to "visit the brand on Facebook."
  • Any content a brand wants to feature in the Fan Box can be customized by the Facebook-page administrator.
  • While only the page administrator can generate the code and customize the content, anyone can grab the code to embed the Fan Box on another site.

One potential nice side effect of this is that the more places the Fan Box is displayed, the more potentially positive effect it could have on the Facebook fan page's search ranking -- in other words, more pages will be linking to it (which helps add relevancy to search-engine results).

The Fan Box is available right now, if you're a Facebook-page administrator. Right below your page's profile picture is a button that launches the Fan Box-creation wizard.

Ironically, just a day after Slide announced it is going full-bore into the branded-app business, Facebook launched a widget. This is yet another example of the "everything is connected to everything else" (or at least Facebook) mentality changing the way we communicate with people and the ways they communicate each other.

The recommendation here: Experiment with the Fan Box and see how/if it impacts your page performance. Why not? It's free.

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Ian Schafer is CEO of Deep Focus. Follow his musings at Ianschafer.com or Twitter.

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