Facebook users spend an average of 7.5 hours each month on Facebook – so it’s now more important than ever to ensure you are using the social network effectively.
As the 30th March ticks down companies are (or should be) thinking how they are going to make the switch to Facebook timeline.
Here are the new features and updates to Facebook timeline:
This is the prime piece of real estate for the new pages and the first image that everyone will see. The image size is 851 x 851 pixels. (At the end of this post I have included a link to common mistakes brands are likely to make with timeline.)
Also, the profile image has changed slightly too it’s now 180 x 180 pixels – it should compliment your cover photo.
The about section sits under the profile image and will highlight your core mission and/or a call to action. Clicking your about section will expand all the company profile information (see image below).
The Apps (previously known as tabs) sit on the right hand side below the cover photo – you can only show 4 of your apps. The rest of them will be hidden and only shown once the expand button is selected (see images below). You have the chance to create custom imagery for these apps – if you leave them they will default to the current app icon you have.
This allows companies to interact with your audience through private messages. This can be utilised to take negative messages into a private forum, rather than all on your page. You can hide the message button (which sits below the cover photo next to the ‘like’ button) doing this will only allow your audience to interact with you on your wall.
Wall posts and the core of timeline:
The wall is now split into two columns with ‘people talking about’ the brand on the right hand side – this is in chronological order.
On the left hand side are the brand updates. Facebook determines what to feature based on the engagement levels. These updates can be edited by admins by selecting which posts to highlight. When a post is highlighted it doubles in width (see image below).
Companies can add events (from the past) to feature historical milestones, product launches, significant employee changes, new premises, awards and achievements. To utilise milestone you can name your event, the locations, date, information and choose a photo. Here is a good example from Coca-Cola, utilising milestone to add their founding date.
Pin to top
This allows pages to promote a company event or piece of information; this is handy if you are looking to gain feedback or high engagement. This piece of information is pinned (and highlighted with an orange ribbon in the corner) to the top of the wall and will stay there for 7 days, unless removed earlier (see image below).
The new admin panel allows administrators of the page to see notifications, insights, settings and private messages in one location – this is located at the top of timeline pages.
One of the most important changes to Facebook pages is that companies are able to highlight updates through visualisation. Photos, images and links can make the best content and have a 50% higher engagement rate then just text.
Further reading: The Social Media Explorer have done a great job at distilling the mistakes many companies are likely to make with the new Facebook timeline – and definitely worth checking out.