It has been a little over a month since Facebook forced all pages into the new timeline model. Since the switch, brand engagement is up according to several new studies. One of the most promising analyzed 15 big name brands, such as Toyota and Redbull, and found that brand engagement has increased by about 46% (source). Let’s all agree that is great news for our brands!
So, how can you maximize what Facebook has given you to work with? Here are 3 tips to make your timeline shine.
1. Cover the First Impression
The cover image is the large image that stretches across the top of your brand page. It is 851×315 pixels of awesome attention-grabbing real estate! Even though Facebook has laid down some strict guidelines such as no promos in the cover image, brands are getting creative with their cover images and getting noticed.
Create a cover image that says something about your brand’s personality to use as your standard cover image. Take a look at what The Brown Palace has done. As one of the oldest and most iconic hotels in Denver, they have captured their personality perfectly in their black and white cover image.
When promotions, new products, or events are announced, change up your cover image to reflect what is going on with your brand. New Belgium is releasing a new brew and have changed their cover image to reflect the release. The cover image is interesting and enticing, drawing the page visitor down to their custom tabs.
2. Personalize Your Look
The Facebook Timeline has moved tabs/apps to the right below the cover image. They now look more like buttons than tabs. Photos will always be first, but the other 3 visible tabs can be reordered. Tabs outside of the 4 visible appear in a window when your visitors click to see more tabs. In the example above from New Belgium, custom tabs and tab images have been created to further highlight the release of the new brew, Shift.
We use TabSite to create custom tabs for the Swiftpage timeline like the one for our Monthly Surveys. There are plenty of other similar programs out there and all will help you set your timeline apart from your competition.
Even if you don’t create custom tabs, you should create custom tab images. Tab images should be 111×74 pixels and reflect your branding. Bright Peak created tab images for us that we just love and give us a lot of flexibility when we change out our tabs.
3. Draw Attention to the Big Stuff
Much like email design, you want to keep your most pertinent information on your timeline at the top. Posts gradually get pushed down and lost as time goes on. If you post something you really want to keep at the top, you can pin it there where it will sit for a week like Anberlin did when they announced their tour dates. The little orange flag at the top right indicates the post has been pinned.
Another option to draw attention is to highlight a post. Highlighting a post allows it to span across your whole page rather than just sit in one column.
————————————————————- These 3 tips are just the tip (pun intended) of the Facebook Timeline iceberg. If you are looking for more, Mashable published an excellent guide for brands getting started on their timelines. For some additional inspiration and creative ideas, check out Social @ Blogging Tracker’s 15 Creative Tips to Rock Your Timeline Cover Photo for Facebook Pages. Whatever you do, don’t let your Facebook page just sit there, untouched. Facebook followers are engaging with brands more everyday and you want your brand to be one of them.