Offerpop’s Tab Apps Let Pages Run Commenting Contests that Reach the Feed

New Page management service provider Offerpop today launches its suite of tab apps that allow Pages to run contests. Pages pay a flat monthly subscription rate based on their number of Likes and can then run as many campaigns as they want with the simple-to-use, white labeled photo, poll, and coupon apps. Users comment to vote on contest submissions, simultaneously creating news feed stories which lead friends to the apps.

Offerpop is entering a healthy, though somewhat crowded industry. Page admins can choose from pre-fabricated apps from companies including Involver and Wildfire, design their own using self-service interfaces offered by companies including Webtrends, or services that span across social platform from companies including Buddy Media and Vitrue. Admins can alternatively purchase apps through marketplaces such as AppBistro. Profiles of the leading Page management solutions can be found in the Facebook Marketing Service Provider Directory, available through subscription to the Facebook Marketing Bible.

Founded a year and a half ago, the New York City-based, eight-person Offerpop team seeks to differentiate itself by licensing apps which rarely require users to grant extended permissions. The company’s founders said they aim to “minimize barriers to participation” and score new fans with low-touch applications, not complex, bloated apps which force users to upload content to participate. The apps are inherently viral, since comment votes appended with a link to the app are posted to a user’s stream by default.

Offerpop’s clients include Hotels.com, ModCloth, and Skype, and the company raised $1.4 million in Series A round led by Windcrest Partners. Rates for licensing the suite range from free for Pages with less than 500 Likes, to $2,000 a month for apps with up to one million fans, with pricing set on a case-by-case basis for even larger Pages. Unlike some other tab app providers, Offerpop doesn’t charge extra for Like-gating or white labeling.

To set up the apps, Page admins sign into the Offerpop dashboard with their Facebook credentials and choose an app type to create. There are currently three app types to choose from: Photo Contest lets fans vote for their favorite user-submitted photo, Tug of War lets fan choose between two admin-selected options, and Exclusive lets brands give away unique or sharable coupon codes.

Admins are then shown a pre-populated template making it easy to know which content goes where. They set a schedule for entry submission, voting, and winner selection, choose whether users must Like the Page to participate, and can save the campaign as a draft, set a publishing date, or implement it immediately. The CSS of each app can also be modified for advanced customization. Admins can edit campaigns even after they’re published, see campaign results, and view or download up-to-the-minute performance analytics on views, engagement, and Likes generated.

While these apps are nothing new, building the voting mechanism on top of the Facebook comments plugin is innovative. Occasionally, the approach of not forcing users to grant permissions works against Offerpop, such as when it would be easier for users to select one of their Facebook photos instead uploading a new one. Still, Offerpop is a good choice for Pages who are particularly concerned with drawing new Likes through feed exposure. As the company adds more apps such as a photo caption contest to their suite, we’ll see if they can compete with more well established Page management companies.