Facebook Timeline for Fan Pages Details and How To Prepare

by CoachLaura

Facebook announced that all pages are going to be converted on March 30th to the timeline. Are you freaking out? No need here’s what’s going to change and what you need to know to be prepared. Now through March 30th you can preview you fan page in timeline mode.

Pros and Cons of the New Timeline for Brand Pages on Facebook…

Here’s what’s new that I love:

  1. You can send private messages to fans if they have messaged you. And you can send messages to other fan pages that have kept the message feature active.
  2. Change your fan page name request. Use the form on this page to submit your requested name change: http://www.facebook.com/help/contact_us.php?id=262629790471076.
  3. You can pin posts to the top (for seven days).
  4. Highlighting posts which will features it across the full width of the timeline
  5. Offers (formerly Deals) allows you to post sales or specials on your pages for Facebook replaces sponsored stories improving fan page exposure. Mari Smith has explained offers in detail here.
  6. Add Milestones with dates to mark important activity you want to highlight. They are automatically widescreen. Great way to share your business history, achievements and important events.

Here’s what’s new that we have to get creative around:

  1. No more default landing tab
  2. Design a cover photo 851 x 315 pixels (see restrictions below) and your picture box is 180 x180. Remember your thumbnail image is 32×32 so make sure your picture box scales down well.

Timeline Cover Image Restrictions (according to Facebook)

According to Facebook, cover photos now have restrictions.Your cover image may NOT contain:

  • Price or purchase information, such as “40 percent off” or “Download it at our website.”
  • Contact information, such as web address, email, mailing address or other information intended for your Page’s About section.
  • References to user interface elements, such as Like or Share, or any other Facebook site features.
  • Calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends.”

Prepare for the Change and Maximize Your List Building and Other Marketing Strategies

Design New Graphics for Timeline Cover and App Tab

Timeline – more visually oriented. You may want to enlist a branding expert to help you translate your brand into graphics for the cover and app tabs. Tab pages now can be up to 780 pixels (some indicate 810) wide so you will want to redesign them as well as create a custom image for the top row.

Pin Posts That Highlight Your App Tabs

Pinning posts to the top of your timeline can be a geat way to feature your app tabs, events, blog posts, recommendations, etc. Once you pin a post, it will stay there for seven days. Why not create a pinned post that invites users to your app tabs? This could include  pinned posts that link to your tabs for opting-in for a free report, video series, or webinar, to enter a contest, to take a poll, to get a coupon, etc.

App Tab Images

Your app tabs can now have images that appear just underneath the cover. Before they were unnoticable on the left side navigation and no one really noticed. Here’s your opportunity to showcase your application tabs and invite people to your custom pages by designing an image that invites them to click on it.

Prepare an image (jpg, png or gif) that is 111 x 74 pixels (or a multiple of that for correct sizing).

To change the app tab image follow these simple steps.Change Image for Tabs on Timeline

  1. On your fan page timeline click on the down arrow next to the 4 images on the top row (under the cover image)
  2. Mouse over the app image you want to change, and click the pencil that appears. A menu will appear.
  3. select “Edit Settings” toward the bottom. This opens the “Edit____ Settings” window for the app tab.
  4. Click “Change” next to Custom Tab Image: and you will then be in the developer settings for the app.
  5. Locate the current app image and click the “Change” link and select the image you want from your computer.

Please share links to the fan pages with great cover images, app tabs and other ideas for using the new pages for your business with us.

Official Facebook Pages info on Fan Page Timeline

https://www.facebook.com/about/pages/

https://www.learnfacebookpages.com

Official Facebook Pages Help

https://www.facebook.com/help/pages/new-design

Facebook Pages Terms

https://www.facebook.com/page_guidelines.php

Other Blogs Discussing Timeline Change

AllFacebook.com

GenConnect.com

HyperArts.com Facebook Timeline for Pages – Frequently Asked Questions

WChingYa.com 15 Creative Timeline Cover Image Ideas

KISSMetrics Blog: 28 Things You Need To Know About New Facebook Pages

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Piotr Loj March 6, 2012 at 9:15 am

Hello Laura!

Great article about changes.
Still few bugs to fix for facebook developers, but it seems that more place for a tab content is going to make huge difference for companies.

Im a graphic designer and just started designing new fanpage timeline covers.
This is my first work for myself:

https://www.facebook.com/lojke.fanpages

I would be really happy for some feedback.

Please kindly, take a look at old designs potfolio ;)

Best regards,
Piotr Loj

Kay March 8, 2012 at 6:05 pm

Really helpful information! I cannot figure out how to post to other fan pages/send private messages to fans/post on the Fan Page –all as the Page and not as me, a private account holder. Really stumping me! Otherwise, knowing that, learning to do what you outline now looks possible. Thanks!

CoachLaura March 9, 2012 at 2:15 am

Kay, So glad this has been helpful. To clarify about messaging fans, I believe the only way to send a message to fans is if they have sent your page a message. In other words, a fan page may reply only. You can, however, send private messages to other fan pages by going to the pages individually and messaging them. Facebook really wants to prevent spam and drive more usage of advertising to reach fans.

CoachLaura March 9, 2012 at 2:17 am

Great job on your cover image and app images. How did you make the Website app jump directly to your website. That is really cool.

Ching Ya March 12, 2012 at 2:11 am

Hi Laura, thank you so much for the link love. I hope the examples can inspire others to create great covers even though we’re no big brands. :-) Also, great job on the step by step instructions and additional resources. Hugs!

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