Right from the basics: creating and installing your first app

Even though there are already a fair amount of users creating and installing apps in their Facebook pages, we don't want to leave our first steppers behind. So we're starting our series of tutorials and posts from the very basics: how to create and install an app for the first time.

As you've probably noticed, we talk about "creating" and "installing" as very different things. The first step is to create an app and assign it to a Facebook page. At this stage, the app is neither installed nor published on Facebook, because there are a bunch of things you'd want to customise.

Once you've made it look (and behave) exactly like you want, you can proceed to install it, and only then it will show up on your Facebook page.

Creating your first photo contest

Let's install a photo contest app, that it is by far the most popular among our admins.

If this is the first time you use InstallThisApp, you should see an empty dashboard asking you to create your first app.

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You can create an app from anywhere in the backend, by clicking on the + sign.

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A nice window will show up, asking you to choose an app. As we said before, we'll pick the photo contest app.

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Next, you have to indicate in which Facebook page you'd want the app. If you happen to change your mind, you can always step back and pick another app by clicking on "change", below the window's title.

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Now it is time to give it a name and description. Both fields are mandatory, and here's why: The app's name will show up on your Facebook page's tab, and the description will appear on the links your users will eventually share.

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After this step (and a little waiting) your app is created. However, there is a last step remaining, where you'll be asked if the app should be exclusive for fans and a couple of app-specific settings.

If you choose to block the app for no-fans, you'll be asked later (in the screen editor) to upload an image that tells users to click "like" to participate. In this case, the app-specific setting is the frequency in which users can vote.

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Adding your personal touch

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The installation window will then get you to the screen editor, where you can quickly change colors, texts, sizes and images in order to make your app look as your brand (or your taste) requires. We'll write later about the screen editor and how to get the most out of it.

...And finally

Once you save all the changes you've made in the editor, the app is ready to be installed (yay!). And, yes, you have to click that huge green "Install" button.

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A window will show up with a smiley telling you the app has been successfully installed. Right below, you get a smartlink to share your app manually and a button to share it right in your Facebook page's timeline.

It is VERY important that you use this short URL to share your app. It automagically detects which device the visitor is using, and shows them a properly adapted version for every case.

You're big brother now

From now on (and if you've properly noticed people about your app), users should start participating. All the information about them will show up in the app's dashboard once our platform processed it, allowing you to visualize usage statistics and real time interactions between users and the app.

You can also see the latest uploaded pics and a top 10 of the most voted ones, and you're allowed to ban inappropriate content. Each app shows different data in their dashboard. For instance, if this were a trivia app, you'd see the latest answers and a scoreboard.

In future posts we'll talk about user management, how to read you app's statistics, and many more features you can get advantage of.

Now move on and get your fans some fun with a photo contest, they'll love it!