Facebook Timeline

As Facebook Constantly Evolves, Are You Keeping Up?

Facebook, how you love to constantly keep me on my toes!  Updates to my cover photo, updated formats to my timeline, how does one ever keep it all straight?  How will this affect my business page?  What’s going to happen to my logo and important company contact information?  If you are anything like me and your head is trying to grasp all of the new implementations from Facebook’s most recent updates released March 10, 2014, then worry no further.  I have done some homework and am pleased to come to the rescue.  Well… something like that!

What are some of the major updates as of 3/10/14?

  • Cover photo settings
  • Category adjustment
  • Timelines

Cover Photo: FBLet’s start with the easiest change and the one that will affect you the most!  This would be that big, bold, beautiful cover photo that is one of the first things someone views when they click on a profile.  It illustrates “this is the purpose of my life or the theme for my business.”  Cover photos can incorporate information like your logo and/or business name, or just be a stand-alone image of an everyday interest.

If you are wondering what has stayed the same and what has changed, here is what I’ve found.  The size of the photo has stayed exactly the same, but the photo positioning has been moved higher from where it originally had been.  This means that any company name or reference on your photo will need to be re-positioned closer to the bottom of your uploaded photo if you desire taking this adjustment into consideration.

Previously, you may have had your logo and company information centered over your picture, which with the new update, would now bring it higher and less likely to see without clicking on the picture itself.  Placement of logos and company info will now also need to be integrated into the area of the picture you would most like showcased.  The good news is that you are allowed to edit and reposition your photos, as you could do before.  This always helps with any final touches to your final layout.

Category: Are you an artist, a local business, some form of entertainment, or public figure?  These are just a few of the page descriptions that you can choose from when creating your page.  When you pick the correct page type for your business or fans, this actually helps your fans or clients find more out about you and exactly what they want to know about you or your business.  It also helps with your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and can increase marketability with your search appearances on Google, etc.

Now take some time to look at your own page info.   Do you have the proper page type established (a few were mentioned above)?  Once you do, you can break it down further into specific categories.  If you have done this already, do the categories you’ve chosen currently emphasize the focus or brand of what your company represents, such as “websites and blogs,” etc.?

If not, the good news is that you can always update this section.  This area is also where you can write a short description of your business for others to read.  If you haven’t done so, you might as well update everything at this point.  To edit, simply click on “Update Page Info” underneath your cover photo.  Categories will be more noticeable in the new update, so you want to ensure that you have the right type of business, etc. as your selection.

Timelines: I find that the new timeline feature is actually quite handy, especially if there is something in particular that you’re searching for and you have an idea of when it occurred.  It’s now a more streamlined look where there are two columns.  The left hand side includes information about the brand or company, and the right column is the page’s timeline.  In previous versions, both columns served as the timeline and posts were staggered between the left and the right columns as users scrolled.  This update makes navigation very simplistic, especially when you know exactly what month/year that you want to visit.

It’s important to stay engaged……. As with life, social media is constantly throwing curve balls and changes.  Luckily, the developers of Facebook recognize that it’s used world-wide, by individuals of all ages.  Nothing is going to be too complicated or people would stop being so dependent on the product.  Small changes keep us engaged and eventually, we all figure out how to make something work.  When all else fails, there is always the Help section to pinpoint an answer.

I hope these tips are of assistance the next time you click on your profile and see that something doesn’t seem just right.  Rest assured, all it takes is a small tweak and you will be back to normal in no time at all.  Heck, the reality to writing this is that it’s already most likely old news, as we all know Facebook loves to throw new changes at us when we least expect them.

Speaking of which, it looks like Facebook is coming out with yet another update June 24…stay tuned!

Facebook TIMELINE for Brand Pages: How To Get Started

Recently we wrote an article about how Facebook was converting individual user pages to their new “Timeline” format.  In true Facebook fashion, they just announced the same change is scheduled for brand (company) pages. The idea is basically the same, but here is some information you need to know about this update to your brand page and how to get started.

Do It On Your Own “Timeline” This is a big change for your brand page. That means you want to control when it happens and ensure your page will look as you want it to for its launch in the new look and feel.

Keep in mind your time to make the change yourself is limited! If you don't change your brand page layout by March 30th (only 3 weeks away!) Facebook will do it for you automatically.

How To Get Started?

1. Put up a fantastic cover photo This new layout allows you to feature a large header image on your brand page.  Make it count! This is an excellent new feature as it gives you more control of what your page looks like and what users see when they visit your brand page. Here are some ideas on how to utilize that space:

  • If your product is very visual, feature it!
  • Set the tone for your page with an image that represents the look and feel for your company.
  • If your company has great employees or you want to promote company culture, feature your company & its members! (This is a great place to show the company in action, at a fun event, or doing great work.)

Facebook has rules on what you CAN'T use as a cover photo:

  • No price, purchase or discount information
  • No contact information (that should go in the About section)
  • No calls to action or references to Facebook features/actions (e.g. Like, Share)

2. Choose your featured content Facebook has given you more control of what a user sees when they visit your page, not just with the cover photo but with other content such as apps, featured posts (you can pin them to the top, but keep in mind they will only stay there for 7 days before they are automatically removed/replaced). Use these features!

3. Use milestones for your Timeline Since the main purpose of this new Timeline layout is to show the history of your company over time, use that feature and fill out key milestones for your business. Ensure that the timeline accurately reflects the past and your story!

4. Use a great new feature: PRIVATE MESSAGES It is finally allowed for brand pages (companies) to communicate privately with users.  This personal line of communication is something that Facebook for brands had been missing. Now that it is available, use it! This allows you to keep your brand page clean and de-cluttered.    Promote users to communicate with you individually on customer inquiries, and other personal questions so that your brand page can feature content that is supposed to be for all users. Your brand page has a lot going on, keep it de-cluttered and focused.

Facebook’s Timeline: Review Your Profile, Be Ready

Big players in social media and in the internet world seem to be consistently giving their sites “face-lifts”, and often without regard to the users actually wanting the change.  This is the case with Facebook’s new “Timeline”. It is not just a feature, but instead a renewal of your Facebook page to change the layout from a linear stream of information and posts to aggregated sections designed to highlight everything you like, your profile, your photos, and the apps you are using.

The catch is that it is not optional any longer.  The rollout will take place over the next few weeks, so it’s time to get on board and review your profile page to ensure it will look as you want it to.  It isn’t all bad, and some of us may even learn to like it. Here is what you need to know to transition safely.

  • Facebook TimelineAll posts will default to PUBLIC. Review your new and past posts.  During each post, ensure you check the inline audience selector and switch it as needed (to friends, etc.) so only who you want to see that information, can see it. If you are ever concerned you mis-marked previous posts, you can see how your Timeline looks to others by clicking the gear icon below your cover image and selecting “View As”.  You can change past posts globally through your Privacy Settings or individually by clicking the pencil icon next to each post.
    • To make sure your past posts are limited to friends, click on the small arrow on the top right corner of your Timeline. Then go to Privacy Settings >Limit the Audience for Past Posts >Manage Past Post Visibility and select Limit Old Posts. Alternately, you can change the audience by clicking on the small pencil icon at the top right of individual posts to edit or hide them from the Timeline.
  • You have 7 days to review your new Timeline.  Once you make the switch to Timeline (by choice or Facebook’s rollout), you only have 7 days to make any changes you need before other people see it (e.g. managing post visibility).
    • To rollout the Timeline yourself visit Facebook’s Timeline profile page, and click Get Timeline in the lower right corner.
  • Facebook wants to know more about you.  Facebook has many suggestions for how you can back fill your Timeline. You can add information from the past in such categories as “Work & Education”, “Family & Relationships”, and so on.  Simply click on the “Life Event” in your status bar and add away.  This actually isn’t all bad, you might enjoy posting life events from your past and allowing others to look at it, sort of like an online scrap book.  Keep in mind, however, the more information you put up, the more information Facebook is collecting on you, and the more information people can find about you.
  • Is security a concern? Your personal information is very valuable to you, and to criminals.  Keep that in mind when posting personal information.

Check out Facebook’s information on the new Timeline profile page.

Have additional questions? Contact us or check out the Facebook Help Center.