When given the option to switch from the old to the new we jumped on the opportunity. Very quickly we noticed some big changes. The obvious change is the general layout, which is now much closer to the Timeline on personal profiles. They got ride of the original profile image and replaced it with a small avatar. This might sound bad at first due to the huge amount of real estate this image used to provide. However, now there is a large “Cover” image that is located at the top of your profile. This image is even larger (minimum 339 pixels wide) and provides more space than the original profile image. although, it does come with limitations. When learning more about the Cover image Facebook shares with you that you are not allowed to put promotions, contact information, specials, calls of action or any other form of sales messages on the image. This new Cover image will without doubt be a section of the FanPage that you will want to spend a little bit of time on when setting up or switching over your FanPage.
Since first learning about the new Timeline FanPages a big question was what would happen to the custom tabs. We are very happy to report that the custom tabs are still on the page, found directly below the Cover image towards the top of the profile. The good news is the new Timeline appears to give even more space to the custom tabs, which is always a good thing. It also appears that you will be able to bring more attention to the tabs due to an increase in space introducing the tab on the profile. However, unlike before you are no longer able to setup your profile landing page on these custom tabs when a user first goes to your page. If they go to your Facebook URL they will land on your Timeline. In our opinion Facebook will make an update to this and once again allow new users to land on a custom landing page.
The Timeline feature on the FanPages is very similar to the personal profiles. You’re now able to go through the pages posts and events in a Timeline format. This feature could potentially increase your engagement and help grab the attention of new Fans right from the start. Before your status updates would appear on your page for a day if you were lucky, now they are on the page much longer. You’re also able to “Pin” posts so that they appear at the top of your profile for up to 7 days. This increased visibility should help increase interaction on your page. Other than the new Timeline the biggest change to how Fans and users are able to interact with your page is the Message feature. Fans and users are once again able to send your brand a direct messages. I believe this feature alone can help make the new Timeline FanPages even more powerful than before. Question, concerns or suggestions are now easily messaged directly to your brand straight from Facebook.
The switch from old to new is going to be a bit of hassle, but once you learn the new layout and once again get comfortable on the pages we believe these new FanPages will bring even more power to the business using Facebook.
Have questions about the new Timeline for FanPages? Ask your question on our FanPage or in the comments field below.