Facebook launches new Timeline feature
Businesses using Facebook Pages began their Wednesday morning with a notice that big changes are coming to Facebook Pages, most notably in the rollout of Timeline for Pages, just like the social media giant did for personal profiles.
There has been a lot of buzz surrounding the changes with supporters hailing the ability to brand more effectively, while critics lament the Timeline aesthetics and function regardless of whether it is on a business or personal account.
Well known Facebook expert, Brian Carter, author of “Facebook Marketing” and “The Like Economy” wrote today that the Timeline rollout for Pages “is exciting for designers, maybe, but not for people who want bottom-line social media marketing results. Explain to me how the new look will improve your business results in any way?”
Bad news for Page owners
Carter added the disappointing news that under 1.0 percent of fans go back to Facebook Pages after they have liked them, equating Facebook to an email list, as fans continue to consume content from Pages in their news feed, not the Page itself. Carter said, “So by all means, make your business’s page look good with the new layout, and feature a post at the top of the page, but don’t expect a lot of your fans to be looking at the actual page. Facebook doesn’t work that way. Your brand’s Timeline needs to look good, but 40-160 times as many people will see your posts in their newsfeeds, not on your Timeline page.”
While it is advisable to set up an attractive cover photo for your Facebook Page, the best ROI continues to be in sharing quality, relevant and useful information for people who will see it in their newsfeed. Carter cautions businesses to “stop trying to look cool and start looking for opportunities to get results.”
Carter asserts that there are much more exciting opportunities for brands looking to leverage Facebook Pages like being able to leverage the social graph, and insights from companies like Infinigraph that help discover viral niche content, or other companies that track ROI by linking your Facebook Page to Google Analytics.
“If you think the new Timeline for Pages is more exciting than these,” Carter concludes, “then you aren’t really interested in business results, or you don’t understand how Facebook works, or your only strategic goal is to make your company look cool.”