Facebook announced today fan pages will be moving over to the new Facebook Timeline format. The Facebook Timeline was released for personal Facebook profiles in September, and Timeline for pages was announced today. Brands may begin using timeline now on their fan pages, or they may wait until Facebook converts all pages to Timeline on March 30, 2012. What does this change mean for your brand’s Facebook Fan Page?
Facebook Pages will feature a Cover Photo for you to express your brand or brand message. Your timeline shows an 851 x 315 pixel photo across the top of your Page, which businesses can customize to share their messaging and brand. Your cover photo may not display calls to action – such as “Like Us” or any arrows or direction. The cover photo is offered as a place to make a compelling case for your brand and gives individual Facebook users control over how they choose to interact with your page.
Goodbye to Default Landing Pages
Default landing pages have long been a best practice for Facebook Fan Pages. Brands use default landing pages to promote sales, contests and acquire new users to their mailing lists. With the switch to Facebook Timeline, pages will open to the Timeline and it will not be possible to set a tab as a default landing page.
Brands will now be able to “pin” a post to the top of their Timeline. Pinned posts can remain at the top of your timeline for up to 7 days, and will become the best way to direct fans to contests and other promotions now that default landing pages are not an option.
You’ll have the opportunity to scroll through your entire timeline and highlight important posts. Highlighting a post will make the post take up the entire width of your timeline, rather than falling into one of Timeline’s columns. This offers brands the opportunity to draw more attention to important posts.
A few brands have already made the switch to timeline, though you’ll have the opportunity to work on the design of your page and preview it until March 30th when the change will become compulsory for all Facebook pages.
In order to get started, you’ll want to enter preview mode for your fan page. In preview mode, you and other page administrators will be able to see timeline, but your fans and the Facebook public will see your Facebook page in its old format. You’ll have until March 30th to design your timeline to your liking – including adding your cover photo, highlighting and pinning posts, and altering existing tabs, contests and promotions so that they work well with your new Timeline. When you’re ready to launch your Timeline to your fans, click “Publish”, or wait for March 30th when Facebook intends to make the switch for all fan pages.
For more information on the effects that this Facebook timeline switch will have on your brand’s Facebook Fan Page, contact a Fruition team member. We’re happy to talk to you about the impact of the changes to your brand, as well as to help you with the transition to Timeline.
Brad Anderson is the Founder and CEO of Fruition. Brad’s focus is supporting Fruition’s team to enable sustainable growth and excellent client satisfaction (EBITDA growth). With a strong statistical background, Brad built Fruition’s in-house software that is used to manage client success.
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