Facebook Timeline Toolkit

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For those of you where were hoping against hope that Facebook would change its mind and not implement the Timeline, your erg has run out of chain: Timeline went into effect for all business pages on March 30; there’s no going back now (unless of course they change their minds again). The good news is it’s not as hard as you might think to convert to Timeline, and there are lots of advantages to it, particularly for activities that are visually appealing … like rowing!

The inbound marketing firm Hubspot (which has a blog you should be following if you’re at all interested in social media marketing for fitness) has published a helpful infographic to take you through the basics.  Download their free ebook for more information on how to make Timeline work for you.  Need a cheat sheet with photo sizes and the like? Dreamgrow has put one together.

Here are some of the key changes:

  • No more default “fan-gating” pages that require people to like your page before they can see your content (to me this is great news, I’d much rather have people join my online community because they can see what’s there and like it)
  • You can spotlight up to three icons on your cover page, along with About and Photos.  Check Concept2’s Facebook page for some nice ideas.
  • You have the option to pin content to make it visible to people for longer – that only lasts for 7 days though and then you have to create a new post and pin it
  • A new “Message” feature allows users to contact your business page in much the same way they can contact your personal page (instead of having to write on your wall)

It’s a Visual, Visual, Visual World

Timeline is definitely changing the way things work on Facebook, making it more visual and requiring that you post more good content for starters, but that’s where the Internet is headed anyway: You can barely take a step in social media online and not run into articles about the growth of Instagram, Pinterest, Slideshare, and Tumblr, all of which put heavy emphasis on visuals.  And then there’s photo-friendly Google+, which is growing slowly but surely and more importantly has a huge influence on Google search results.

Much of this is also influenced by the astounding adoption of mobile and smartphone applications, coupled with our ever-shrinking attention spans.  Whatever the reason, it’s a good time to get out there and learn to take at least some basic photos (and video).

What do you think of the new Timeline?  Love it? Hate it? What’s working for you? Share your opinions and experiences in the comments.

And more food for thought: Report: Studies Split on Whether Facebook Timeline Helps Brands



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