When the Timeline first came out for fan pages, I wasn’t psyched about it. (Admittedly, I’m not good with change… but Facebook seems to be hell-bent on helping with my personal development!)
But now that I’ve lived with it for a couple of weeks, I have found some things I really like about the new format. I still find the new layout – line down the middle with posts on either side – hard to follow, but Facebook has made it up to me by providing some storytelling tools that I think can really up a business owner’s game.
Highlighting & Pinning
I love the new ability to spotlight important posts.
‘Highlight’ a post, and suddenly it doubles in size – stretching out across the whole page. (We use this feature for our Video Tips of the Day, and now they’re almost impossible to miss!)
‘Pin’ a post to the top of your page, and visitors will immediately be in the know about important announcements, special offers, contests, and anything else you really want to share.
These new features make it easier to control what someone looks at on your page – always important when using Facebook for marketing.
It used to be, that if a customer had something to say about your business on Facebook, they wrote it on your wall. That’s terrific if it’s a glowing report about your products or services. But what if it’s a complaint? Now, Facebook allows users to message businesses directly – giving us a better way to have a conversation than just posting and commenting. I still don’t think business owners should delete negative posts. (Hey, no one thinks you make everyone happy 100% of the time – better to have your fans see that you treated your unhappy customer with respect, and solved the problem.) However, the new messaging feature does give businesses the ability to take that uncomfortable conversation off-line.
Do you remember the day you started your business? Or when you hired your first employee? Signed your biggest client? Now, all you have to do is look back at your Facebook page!
Milestones give businesses a way to highlight the biggest moments in their company history – complete with dates, pictures and comments. It let’s you easily tell the story of your business. And isn’t that what it’s all about?
I’m also digging that the Timeline does away with default landing tabs (don’t we all just want to see the wall, anyway?), de-emphasizes the number of ‘likes’ a page has, and spotlights friend activity. And it’s hard to deny that customizing that new cover photo is really fun. Give me a few more weeks, and I may forget about the old layout completely!