By Scott Prindle.
The new timeline layout for Facebook gives you a lot more freedom to be expressive with your business page, but also comes with a new set of hurdles on how to effectively manage your page for customers. In this article, we’ll go over a couple of the new major items, and how to use them effectively.
The largest change on the facebook profiles is the advent of cover images. These are large masthead images that allow your business to establish your visual branding directly on facebook. It is not, however, meant to be used for promotional uses, such as deals, sales, etc, as facebook has structures in place already for promotions. Some of the big no-no’s include:
- No promotions
- No contact info, including phone numbers, emails, etc., which is meant to be placed in the about section.
- No call-to-actions or text trying to engage the user to interact with facebook’s user interface (liking and sharing for example).
These aren’t all of the guidelines, but the larger principles to go by for your cover image. To find all the details, visit Facebook’s help section on cover image guidelines for business pages.
No More Fan-Gating
Facebook used to have a rather nice marketing feature through the facebook apps that allowed you to hide away specific content based on whether the user accessing the page was a fan of the page or a new visitor. But with the new timeline, you’ll no longer be able to hide content on the homepage in the same fashion. This is to promote Facebook as more of a social network, and keeps people from feeling like they are being bombarded with ads everywhere they go on the site.
You’ll still be able to deliver subscriber specific content through the use of the tabs, though. Tabs are the new area for businesses to add in facebook apps, google map embeds, and other extras. Using these tabs, you can add fan exclusive content using facebook apps incentivizing visitors to like your page. The difference between the old and the new versions being that the user must make the leap to that fan gated content, rather than being presented with the gate from the get-go on the landing page.
Those tabs, however, have static locations (urls), allowing you to link directly to those pages from your website, newsletter, or other social networks. You can use this to your advantage by directly linking users to these fan-gated pages, rather than to the default landing page in order to convert them over to customers.
You’ll now have the ability to pin specific posts that you’ve made at the top of your timeline, in order to put more of a focus on it. The post will remain at that spot for 7 days before returning back to its original place chronologically. This is great for posting your deals, or major upcoming business events.
As well, you can re-pin an event, and there is not a limit to the number of times that can be done. This will allow you to keep an event posting at the top of your page for as long as needed (provided you’re cool with some menial re-pinning).
This barely scratches the surface of your timeline’s capabilities, but these are just a few tips to help you better utilize your Facebook page to better cater content to your customers. Thanks for reading.