The new Facebook changes have caused quite a commotion over the past couple of months, especially since the launch of Timeline for Pages Previews earlier this month. This new design poses several challenges for online marketers. The new features as well as limitations of the new Timeline format undoubtedly affects the ways in which brands and companies connect and engage with customers on Facebook. Page owners are advised to get their head around these changes in order to utilize them to their advantage and review their strategies before Timeline is pushed live for all Pages on March 30.
Timeline challenges businesses to create a more expressive and visual identity on Facebook. Page owners will have to think about new creative ways to use the Timeline layout to get the attention of newcomers and engage with their audience. First of all, the new Timeline for pages no longer offers the option to set up a default landing page or welcome tab. Instead, your Page visitors will by default land on your Timeline, challenging the ways in which the visibility of a new promotion, coupon, welcome message or any company announcement can be optimized.
While running our BrightonSEO Facebook Ticket Giveaway I have discovered several new and exciting functionalities that Timeline’s new features for Pages has to offer.
1. Pin posts
First of all, Timeline allows brands to ‘pin’ a specific post to the top of their Page. The post will remain at the top of your Page for seven days after which it will drop down to the date when it was published on your Page Timeline. They can be either images or text and can contain anything from new product announcements to call-to-actions. This new feature is particularly advantageous if you wish to advertise a promotion as this post will be seen first by visiting users. Preferably pin posts that includes images as these are larger and more noticeable.
2. New Page Tabs
Instead of setting up a default landing tab, a feature used very often in the old Facebook Pages, you can now use the boxes right beneath your cover image to help push your promotions or contests. Although there is room for 12 boxes, only four will be displayed by default. You can add tabs and applications of your choice and change their order – except for the Photos View that will always appear first. If you are running any promotions or contests, make sure that these tabs are featured within the top four. Add an appealing page tab icon and pick an engaging tab name, as these are now free of choice.
Moreover, with a width of 810 pixels, Page tabs views have become much wider, allowing for much more content and the possibility to create much more appealing and clever designs. Each of your tabs still has its own unique URL so you can still drive traffic to any landing tab, from within Facebook as well as outside Facebook.
3. Highlight posts
Another new feature that can help you advertise promotions and contests on your Timeline is the option to ‘highlight’ or expand posts. To highlight a post, hover over the top right corner of your post and click the star icon. Since highlighted posts will cover the full width of your Timeline, you should prioritise those messages that you wouldn’t want your Page visitors to miss. By highlighting promotions, contests or other announcements you will increase their visibility to users and potentially drive more interaction. To maximise the effect, add an eye-catching image to your promotional message.
These are only a few of the new features that are now available on Facebook Timeline for Pages. It’s time to start experimenting with the new layout and discover the creative and exciting ways to use its new functionalities to express your identity and engage with your audience.