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Using the Publisher on Facebook Pages

May 12, 2009ByJon Warman

The Publisher is a great way for your users to interact with your application, sharing content directly on their friends' profiles as well as posting content to their own profiles. And now, we've updated the Publisher so your applications' Publisher integrations work on Facebook Pages as well. This allows Page admins and to publish content directly to users' streams through your Publisher on the Page. And that Page's fans can publish content directly on a Page through your Publisher, where those posts then get published into their streams for their friends and other fans to see.

We can think of a number of ways in which your applications can maximize their impact on Facebook Pages. And given the high level of creativity of our developer community, we know you'll think of many more ways. For example, your application can use the Publisher on a Page to:

  • Promote philanthropy, coupons, or sweepstakes. A Page admin can solicit a charitable donation, publish a coupon, or announce a sweepstakes, and the resulting post appears in the streams of its fans, driving traffic to an appropriate tab on the Page or an external site.
  • Gauge fan interest. Polling applications are a good way for a band or brand to gather information from its fans.
  • Encourage fan interaction. The many artistic applications out there can give fans the ability to create works of art directly on a Page to show their appreciation.
  • Host live events. Bands, brands, and public figures all want to interact with their fans and supporters in real time. Use the Publisher to announce a live event and drive traffic to the event.

What Do I Need to Do?

If you already have a Publisher integration, it will work for Page admins and fans viewing the Page in exactly the same way it works for user profile owners and friends viewing a user's profile. You should keep in mind the following:

  • Make sure your application can be added to a Page. In the Facebook Developer application, on the Authentication tab, check Facebook Pages next to Installable to?.
  • Look for the fb_sig_page_id parameter we'll send to your application so you know it's being requested from a Page. This is useful if you want to customize the Publisher for different contexts.
  • Configure your Publisher to be fluid, so it runs inline on the Facebook home page, user profiles, and Facebook Pages.
  • A profile box or application tab must be on the Page before the Publisher can appear, so having a rich, engaging tab or box helps. For inspiration, check out the New Tees! tab on the Threadless Page or Target's Vote tab.
  • Use the Open Stream API to read from and write to a user's stream.

We've updated our sample application, Smiley, so you can try out its Publisher on a Facebook Page.

As always, we welcome your feedback in the Developer Forum. We can't wait to see what kinds of Publishers you'll make available to public figures, brands, and bands on Facebook!