Facebook Open Graph: These Apps Prove Its Worth

Open Graph is obviously important to Facebook and its partners. It allows brands to personally connect with its users on a level previously unheard of. While some people don’t like some of the f...
Facebook Open Graph: These Apps Prove Its Worth
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  • Open Graph is obviously important to Facebook and its partners. It allows brands to personally connect with its users on a level previously unheard of. While some people don’t like some of the features that came along with Open Graph (i.e. Timeline), I think we can all agree that connecting with Facebook over our favorite sites has changed how we share content with each other and the world.

    It’s in that spirit that Facebook has taken to their developer blog to showcase some of the best uses of Open Graph. The social media platform has on occasion pointed to a specific Web site or app and its use of Open Graph to sell it to other developers. This may be the first time, however, that they have compiled stats from video streaming sites.

    We reported last month on the new social features that appeared on music video site VEVO. Since the launch of Open Graph on VEVO, “published actions on Facebook increased 600 percent from February to March, referrals from Facebook to VEVO have increased 130 percent in the same time frame, and 60 percent of Facebook referral traffic now comes from Open Graph stories.”

    It doesn’t just stop there as video sharing app Viddy recently integrated Open Graph into itself as well. This has a rise of 60,000 monthly active users to more than 920,000 MAU. Even more impressive, there have been over 9 million interactions with Viddy content on Facebook.

    Open Graph even helps smaller video sites increase their traffic. Turkish online video site Izlesene integrated Open Graph and saw its MAU increase from 250,000 to 6.5 million. The number of video views per day has also increased three times what it was before Open Graph.

    Finally, Dailymotion added Open Graph in January which saw more than 9 million people add it to their Timeline. The site also sees more than 6 million visits from Facebook per day, and sees more than 2 million stories published back to Facebook.

    As is the point of these kind of stories, Open Graph is good for your Web site or app. Even though people complain about Timeline, it’s working. Content people share is more prominent now and the ecosystem of sharing is driving traffic up between Facebook and those who use Open Graph.

    If you’re a late bloomer to the Open Graph craze, don’t worry. Facebook has thrown together some tips to get the most out of your Open Graph integration. The three most important things to remember are “Be transparent,” “provide social context throughout,” and “perform A/B tests.”

    On transparency, a good practice is to let users know what content will be posted on their Facebook Timeline. I know I wouldn’t want an app posting on my Timeline if I didn’t know what was going to go up there and other users are the same. This is best seen in VEVO’s implementation of the “social on/off” control that determines whether or not what they watch on VEVO will be posted to their Timeline.

    Providing social context throughout the entire experience is equally important. Sure, you can just implement a Facebook login with Open Graph to allow people to share what they like, but that’s only getting half of the job done. To fully take advantage of what Open Graph offers to Web sites, you have to constantly remind users about the social benefits of your site. This can be seen on VEVO as well which lists your friends on the left-hand side with options like inviting them to take part in the video viewing.

    Finally, perform A/B tests with your Open Graph implementation. Find out what works best for your users. Just because you think something is grand doesn’t mean that your users are going to like it. Using Izlesene as an example, Facebook says they found users would accept the authorization dialog if they were given more context. In this case, providing a list of friends already using the app was enough to convince to hop on board with integrating their Timeline with the account.

    Like it or not, Facebook’s Open Graph is here to stay. It’s proven itself wildly successful for those who use it and Facebook is sure more people are going to find more success with it.

    If you’re an app maker or Web site operator, have you used Open Graph yet? Has it increased your traffic and referrals? Let us know in the comments.

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