Facebook Timeline Release
As we ebb closer to 2012, you’ll notice many Facebook users have already switched over to the new Timeline feature. This new format will come be accompanied by applause and complaint—much more complaint because let’s face it, human beings are resistant to change. I encourage you to try it out though. The new map feature is a great way to show where you’ve been, and I’m sure developers are working like mad to create libraries of cover pictures for users to upload to their profile. I’ve already updated my profile, and I’m quite pleased with the new look/organization. The official release date for Timeline is January 2, 2012, but for all you early-adopters out there, you can get Timeline now. The next release date on Facebook that I am sure many businesses are curious about, is when fan pages will get a similar overhaul.
Timeline and Fan Pages
Good web design creates both flow and clear calls to action. Currently, with the new Timeline feature, the “flow” of Facebook has been disrupted. I’m sure the overall design of Facebook will change with the roll out of Timeline after January 2. The user experience needs to be seamless across the social network, so expect the Facebook Home page and dashboard to see some design modifications. However, it may take a while to see any new renderings for fan pages, and apps. Businesses invest a lot of money into custom tabs and other features present in their fan pages. But do take note, the current design of fan pages clashes with the new Timeline feature, and I’m sure will clash with updates to the overall look and feel of Facebook. Fan pages will change this year. You may or may not lose features because of this. You may or may not have to redesign your marketing materials to fit the new design of Facebook. The takeaway from all this, “Be Alert!”
If your business or product isn’t on Facebook yet, you may be tempted to promote yourself through a Facebook Profile rather than a fan page—DO NOT DO THIS! Not only does it go against Facebook’s TOS(Terms of Service), but you’re doing yourself a disservice. I know that Profiles have a shiny new coat of paint in the form of Timelines. Your thought process may lead you to believe it will look better, so set up a profile instead of a fan page. However, fan pages are the vehicle that Facebook has set up for businesses, organizations, etc. You can rest assured that an update is on the way, and the design will tie into all the forward-thinking of Facebook in 2012. Don’t waste time, effort and talent packaging your Facebook social media marketing efforts into the wrong container. Be patient, and use fan pages to promote your company and it’s services or products.
At Huebris, we brand Facebook fan pages as part of our Social Media Marketing and Cloud Branding services. Depending on the scope of the upcoming changes, some businesses may need more or less design rework to be styled perfectly into the new look of Facebook. Services like daily updates to Facebook are part of our Social Media Management, and will remain relatively unchanged by the upcoming changes to the social network. If you are curious about how these changes will affect business fan pages in 2012, contact us today!