Easily Build Facebook Fan Page Apps With Norwegian Startup iFrapp

iFrapp,Facebook apps,Norwegian startup,startup interviewMore and more businesses, artists, musicians and even people are turning to Facebook fan pages to engage their audience. With that, the use of apps on Facebook Fan Pages continues to increase as well. It seems more and more people with Facebook fan pages want to engage their audience by holding contests, showing off products, embedding videos, sub pages, surveys and more. However most people think they can’t design these things on their own.

Well now they can, thanks to Norwegian startup iFrapp.

iFrapp is a do it yourself app builder for Facebook fan pages. It lets you take multiple types of engagement from your Facebook page, easily put together new features and then align them with your current themes and backgrounds.

The team at Norwegian social web agency Fennek and Friends created the startup to help companies big and small, increase their engagement on Facebook fan pages. They used their mix of experience in development, social media, innovation and marketing to come up with the tools baked into iFrapp.

We got a chance to talk with the team behind iFrapp, check out the interview below.

What is iFrapp?

iFrapp is a “do-it-yourself” app-builder for Facebook Fan Pages with a new approach to building apps – based on your design.

In layman’s terms, how does it work? (In other words how would you explain it to your grandmother)

More and more companies and organizations invest in customizing their Facebook page. They hold contests there, show off their products, and let customers sign up for newsletters. iFrapp lets you do these things with your own design. It works like this: you start by uploading your app design or choose a plain background. Then build the app by adding different types of functionality on top of your design (including links, videos, subpages, input fields, checkboxes, images, Facebook like button and Facebook sharing-functionality). After building the app you may add an optional like-gate, add app icon and app name. To get the app live – just hit the big Publish button, and the app is live on your Facebook page.

Watch this screencast to see how it works: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10151304542612559

Who are the founders and what are their backgrounds?

iFrapp is a bootstrap – funded and built by Fennek & Friends (“Fennek”), a social web agency and a Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer. The team has a diverse background from development, social media, innovation and marketing.

Where are you based?

We are based in Oslo, Norway.

What’s the startup scene/culture like where you’re based?

The startup scene in Oslo is becoming more and more interesting. With hubs like MESH and Forskningsparken, and lots of events around these hubs, it’s easy to find inspiration, and people have become more eager to talk about their projects – something that’s traditionally a little “un-Norwegian”. The media is also more open to writing about startups, something we’ve benefited from – with articles in Aftenposten, DN and Kapital, to name a few.

How did you come up with the idea for iFrapp?

Our clients kept telling us that the DIY-tools available weren’t really DIY, and after some research, we decided there was a gap between what the market wanted and what was being offered.

How did you come up with the name?

Naming a service is not an easy task. The name “iFrapp” is a mix of “iFrame” and “App” because that fits to the service and is quite catchy. We have received only positive feedback on the name, and people say it’s very easy to remember. It sticks to the brain, which is good. It’s also a trick in terms of search in Facebook. As people start typing in iFra.. to find “iframe apps” iFrapp will show up on that list.

What problem does iFrapp solve?

The main problem iFrapp solves is the need for customized Facebook Fan Pages and hosting contests (to host a contest you need a third party app, which is required by Facebook). In addition, iFrapp solves another problem for those who want more than rigid and lame templates. It gives people the freedom to design their own app just the way they want it.

What’s your secret sauce?

Our secret sauce is to give people a smart tool with the freedom to create great apps based on your design. And, of course, it’s user friendly and affordable for most businesses. To sell this secret sauce, we’re adding some extra flavor, adding functionality and tricks that facilitate viral spread.

Are you bootstrapped or funded?

iFrapp is bootstrapped, no external funding.

What is your goto market strategy?

Our main go to market strategy is to find and establish good distribution channels and use our experience from building social apps to make iFrapp go viral. Facebook will be an important marketing channel. In addition, we try to nominate iFrapp to quality awards and prizes. For example, we got shortlisted to Telenors Digital Winners Prize earlier this month (http://www.telenor.com/news-and-media/press-releases/2012/from-music-to-mobile-paymenttelenor-shortlists-5-digital-winner-contenders/)

What’s one challenge you’ve overcome in the startup process?

One major challenge we’ve overcome is the balance between developing a product in-house while doing consultant projects to make money.

Who are some of your mentors and business role models?

We have a few mentors, but are constantly in search for more. As for role models we look up to the guys from 37signals, and of course all other tech entrepreneurs that have created successful businesses.

What’s next for iFrapp?

Our next move is to get more customers, in local markets and other places, good references, establish efficient distribution, and listen to feedback and what the market needs. We have more exciting plans to scale the business, but that would be a trade secret that I can’t tell you ;)



Check out iFrapp here

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