Facebook can essentially be broken down into a few distinct parts for marketing purposes. Each one is just as important as the next, but whether it’s a certain ad format, the News Feed, or Timeline, each aspect functions a bit differently and gives users a different experience.
Your Timeline in general is what’s going to offer people a brand experience when they visit your page. For this reason, you want to control the look and feel of your page in order to entice people. So, without further ado, here are some tips to help you handle your Timeline business.
Top Tips to Understand and Effectively Use Facebook’s Timeline
1. Understand How Timeline Functions
People who are new to Facebook, or who haven’t used Facebook that much in a while, might be a little confused about how Timeline actually operates. Timeline is the view people have of your page when they visit it. In chronological order, give or take certain elements you fix, people will be able to glean your brand’s history by scrolling your page. They will see various posts, comments, updates, apps and other elements.
Of course, the goal here is to create a Timeline experience for visitors that you want them to see: A professional, clean, free-flowing representation of your brand that puts your best foot forward. When they visit your page, they should immersed in a brand experience.
Now, onto creating that experience.
2. Start with a Custom Photo
Pre-tip: If you don’t have a photo editor, get one! Photoshop is rather expensive, but many marketers wouldn’t be able to handle their business without it. However, if you’re strapped for cash or simply don’t need so many features, you can find comparable programs free of charge, such as GIMP.
Pro tip: Use your editor to create custom photos! Since you’re not allowed to stack a bunch of different photos on your page, you’re left with only one legitimate option (outside of albums and apps), and that’s creating a strong banner. You want to create something that speaks for your brand. Think about including your logo in it, a slogan, and some crisp, clean, bright colors that really draw attention. Check out some popular brand banners for inspiration.
3. Control Your Content Stream
If you leave Timeline to function how it was intended, then your content is only going to show up in chronological order. So, if your latest post isn’t well received—or worse, if it’s bashed and trashed—that’s what someone’s first impression of your brand is going to be. With the new Timeline updates that recently rolled out, you can now pin stories of your choosing to the top for a certain amount of time. You can also pin Promoted Posts.
You also have the option of highlighting a post of yours, which will cause it to span out across your screen. This gives you a great opportunity to highlight something that’s already popular and well received. And with the time restrictions on pins and highlights, it also motivates you to duplicate positive results with fresh content.
4. Show Off Your Strong Points
With Timeline, you’re able to showcase up to 12 apps on your page. Can you think of a few cool apps you might want to display? Your options are vast here. You can have polls, quizzes, sweepstakes, photo apps, videos, and other types of apps showing off your brand.
The catch here is that you can only post four of them at the top of your page. So deciding which four to showcase is going to be what creates that immersive brand atmosphere and what allows people to get a great first impression of your brand. So if you have any sales or contests, breaking news on events, new photo/video to show off, etc, then highlighting that app is a good way to go.
5. Manage the Area
Luckily for Facebook users, the site knows how to streamline content fairly well. This means you have access to a control panel on Facebook which allows you to see different actions people are taking with your page elements. Ultimately, this allows you to properly manage the area and keep it clean.
Make sure you monitor what’s going on out there. If people start trending negative on one of your highlighted posts or apps, then the point of highlighting it has just backfired. You also want to keep the environment friendly and communal. Don’t allow any negativity or spam to take root.
With a carefully managed Timeline, you should be able to wrap people up in a brand experience when they enter your page, and this will ultimately lead to more engagement, more trust, and a higher sense of security on their end.
About the author: Simon Campbell, a wrister from a facebook ad campaign tool – Qwaya. He loves to write different topics about social media and participates in some communities and forums. If you have more social media marketing questions, feel free to ask Simon on Twitter