Wall Posts, Highlighting Posts and “Pinning to Top”
Timeline also brings a number of changes to what users will see on your wall and how you promote your own wall posts.
On the top right of your wall, users will now see three things: how many of your friends like the brand, recent posts from your friends about the brand and recent posts by others about the brand. In other words, each page is personalized for the user, not the brand. This presents a distinct challenge: knowing what is being said about your brand and what your followers are seeing when they visit your brand page. Ensuring that your monitoring what is being said about your brand, and having a response plan in place so that you can actively respond to complaints or sensitive issues will be more important than ever. Check out GFM’s Online War Room for more thoughts on being prepared to respond to angry customers or sensitive issues.
There are also two new options for promoting your own wall posts. Both can be found by scrolling over the top right hand corner of the post:
· Highlight – the feature enlarges your post, spanning across the entire timeline rather than just one side of the page.
· Pin to Top – click the “edit or remove” button and one of the options is “Pin to Top,” which sticks that particular post at the top of your page for seven days.
Admin Panel and Competitive Information
If you are the administrator of a page, you’ll notice several changes including a variety of statistics and options at the top of the page.
· You’ll automatically see notifications, new likes and a brief Insights graph to provide a quick snapshot of current/recent activity on your page.
· When you click “Manage>Edit Page” at the top of your page, you’ll have several new and interesting options, particularly in the “Manage Permissions” section:
o Posting Ability – Allows you to limit who can post to your timeline
o Post Visibility – Allows you to remove “recent posts from others” from your timeline, although there are transparency issues and considerations related to removing those posts.
o Moderation Blocklist – This section allows you to add terms or keywords that you want automatically blocked from your wall. Your initial reaction, particularly if you’re experiencing a crisis situation or similar, might be to limit what people can say on your timeline, but keep in mind what that will say about your brand’s transparent and authentic nature on Facebook.
o Profanity Blocklist – This is a new Facebook filter that allows you to moderately or strongly filter profanity on your page.
All brand pages will be forced to use the Timeline layout at the end of March 2012. Embrace it! While it will take some time to get used to these changes, the updates actually put an emphasis on the authentic and engaging nature of social media: real conversations, useful content, and a place to go and truly learn more about and engage with companies and organizations.
Keep in mind that most Facebook users still rely on their own news feed for information rather than visiting each brand page individually. A majority of your brand’s content that users will see still connects directly to the wall posts, links and information you are putting out as a brand.
That said, look for opportunities to highlight your company’s history. What can you add to your Timeline that provides your customers and prospects a more intimate and authentic connection to your brand? Experiment with inspiring cover photos – what type of photos will best highlight your brand experience? And how can you use the information you get from “recent posts from others talking about your brand?”
As we continue to explore these new Facebook changes, we’re excited that, no matter how many bells and whistles there are, effective use of social media still boils down to authentic engagement and conversations with your key audiences.