Now that Facebook has rolled out their Timeline format to all business page users it’s a prime opportunity to capitalize on all the benefits the new layout offers your brand.
1. Your Cover Image:
Facebook’s cover image really enables a business/brand to capture its audience’s attention and make a strong impression with immediate impact. For brands this offers an opportunity to communicate your brand’s personality in an imaginative way and really leverage your core brand message.
However, remember to read the Facebook guidelines when customizing your cover imagery. You can use this space to let your audience know what you are about but you cannot include promotional writing or a call to action on the cover photo. In short your cover image requires some more creative thinking to grab your key target markets attention while reaffirming your core brand message in a somewhat more subtle way. Cover images should be 851 x 315 pixels. Profile thumbnails should be 180 x 180 pixels
2. Get Visual:
The new layout reduces the visibility of text posts but really highlights image and video content. For some businesses this may mean you need to change the way you post your brand information on Facebook.
The huge popularity of imagery orientated social platforms like Pinterest and Instagram confirm the mass attraction and powerful impact of visual content so start getting great visual content onto your timeline and raise the profile of your brand (products or services) through imagery where ever possible. A note of caution, make sure your selected imagery is relevant to, or congruent with your core brand message and your audiences interests.
3. Directly Reach Your Audience:
The new timeline allows your customers to talk directly to you using private messages and most importantly it allows you to respond. It is critical that you have someone checking your Facebook page frequently to make a timely response. A query ignored could be a sale lost or worse still, compromise your brand.
4. Milestone Your Brand:
While your brand may have only recently joined Facebook, its story may have begun years ago. The new Milestone feature allows you to go back through the years, prior to you joining, and add landmark information and visuals, such as the year you were founded, significant new developments, the look of your brand through the years etc. This enables you to really share your brand’s story and build strong imagery communicating your brand’s development.
5. Highlight What’s Important:
While it is important to post regularly on your page, some posts may be more important than others and require greater exposure. You can now ‘pin’ posts, which means that that post will remain at the top of your Facebook timeline for the entire week. Other posts can be ‘highlighted’ which means they are given wider display space and therefore stand out more.
If you have a special offer, top tips, important news or an impending event, pinning it or highlighting it commands great visual impact thereby saving you the need to make multiple posts just to gain your audience’s attention.
6. Benchmark Your Brand:
While your administrator can view your page insights and find out how many visitors the page receives, the new timeline also allows you to view some insights from your competitors’ pages. Simply go to their page, click their ‘likes’ and you will see some basic insights regarding their visitor analytics.
7. Monitor and Control the Conversation:
While it is important that your customers can post on your wall and create a conversation around your brand, it is equally important that what they post is appropriate. Deleting negative comments is never advised but the new timeline allows you to approve posts before they are displayed on your company’s Facebook wall.
8. Attention to Apps:
Landing page welcome apps no longer apply to the timeline but Facebook has provided the space to feature apps on your page. If your brand has a Youtube channel app, a competition app, etc the new Timeline enables you to display them on the top of your page.
We have already looked at how social media mistakes can damage your brand, however, managed correctly the role social media can play in shaping your brand’s identity, raising its online profile and enhancing customer engagement is undeniable.
• Does your brand’s Facebook page make the most of all the new features?
• Do you have a social networking strategy to help build your brand?
• Are your social media profiles fully utilized to support your brand communication strategy?