If You Want To Be Successful On The Facebook Platform, You Should Follow The Games

While there are many uses for Facebook, the most popular use of the site within applications has become games by a large margin. 7 of the top 10 non-Facebook applications based on daily active users are all games and the trend continues on down the Facebook application leaderboard. I’ve been speaking with a number of new developers who are looking to build successful applications and I keep emphasizing the importance of integrating some sort of game feature.

While your application may not actually be a “game” per-say, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be trying to make a game out of the experience to get users to continue engaging with your application. Facebook for example has integrated a number of gaming components in order to get users to continue using the site. For example, many users will see notifications that a user has only completed a portion of their profile and to encourage them to complete it.

The point is that users on Facebook are not using the site to get work done, they are using the site to have fun and socialize. If you want to truly succeed, you need to cater to that aspect. Even the “How Well Do You Know Me?” application, which has been immensely successful, integrates gaming features into the application. Causes, which has regained its leadership position, has integrated gaming components that encourage users to invite more friends to their causes.

As they invite more users, the number of supporters that show up within their profile increases as well. They also can grow their community rankings to various sizes, and as that community grows the user gets to wear that community on their profile as a badge of success. The bottom line is that if you haven’t integrated gaming components into your application then there’s a much greater likelihood that the application will fail.

The vast majority of leading applications have implemented social game theory to increase the number of users to their application dramatically. If you’re going to build a leading application on Facebook, there better be some sort of gaming applied to it. Care to differ? Feel free to point out more than one or two of the top 50 games in the Facebook application leaderboard that don’t have a gaming component involved.