Facebook Timeline

Improving Your Facebook Timeline Presence

Changes Mean a Different Approach.

As you are most likely (hopefully!) aware, all brands now have Facebook Timeline. The Timeline layout is drastically different from the former brand pages. Have you stopped to wonder what visitors to your Facebook Timeline notice first?

EyeTrackShop (eyetrackshop.com) recently completed a study for Mashable (mashable.com), recording eye movement on the Timeline brand profiles. The results were startling; differing significantly from the previous Facebook brand page heat maps.

Timeline has been active for Facebook brand pages since March 30th. I’m guessing you’ve added a cover photo and have adjusted to the new layout, but have you fully taken advantage of Timeline yet? Here are eight ideas to improve your timeline presence.

First things first: 100 percent of people view your cover photo. It is taking up the prime real-estate on your page, so be sure to make the most of it and remember that the cover photo is the first impression people will have of your brand. Utilize the cover photo to give fans a glimpse of the culture and essence of your business.

Since the profile picture is nestled inside the cover photo, visitors to your page will also view this before any other content on your page. Leave the bold and detailed images for the cover photo and stick to your company logo in this space. Since the profile picture accompanies posts from your restaurant’s account, the logo will visually remind people who you are.

Insights provides valuable analytics for your brand page, and should be leveraged to your advantage. The insight that is provided can give reassurance to your content strategy.

The ability to highlight and pin posts to the top is an invaluable tool for marketers. With highlighting, the highlighted post spans the width of both columns – this would be a great space to point out a specific post you want visitors to interact with: think photos or videos. Maybe you just started a late night Happy Hour, or you now offer catering.

Pinning a post to the top on the other hand, helps extend the life of a post and keeps said post in the top spot for a week (Note: you can only pin one post at a time). This could be the spot to highlight a recent contest winner, or blog post.

Posts with images grab more attention than those lacking an image. Since they generally garner more likes and engage visitors more, you should consider making images present in your posts if they aren’t already. Using images can be as easy as showing off a picture of food. After all, everyone loves to look at pictures of appetizing and well plated appetizers and entrees!

The new brand pages have turned communication into a one-way street from you – if fans are interacting and posting on your page, or mention you it’s minimized on your timeline. Combat this by highlighting fans on your timeline if you see they’ve posted a picture or video and tagged you in it. This also could be where you grab photos from Facebook or even Pinterest. It’s a great way to integrate social strategies and engage fans on both platforms – you can highlight guest photos on Facebook through a post or Pinterest through a board.

If you haven’t already, now would be the perfect time to add in your company milestones, starting with when you first opened your doors to guests. Filling in your milestones will help with telling the story of your brand. As an example, if you’re located in a historic hotel, this would be a great spot to add in some details or fun facts (maybe a past-President visited your location). Also, milestones can be used to highlight awards that your restaurant may have won. There are so many great uses for this tool, curious and engaged fans will enjoy any and all information you want to provide.

Facebook has also provided new advertising tools for you to take advantage of, if desired. The Reach generator is a tool that puts your content in front of fans that may not have seen it originally “for greater reach” (who would have thought from the name?). Additionally, I’m sure that you’ve seen ads when you log out. These ads are more viable for large corporations (ex. Ford, Coca-Cola, etc.). Unless you’ve already been heavily advertising on Facebook with success, these tools aren’t going to be something you want to consider investing in, since the ROI won’t balance out.

Have you implemented any of the ideas listed? | TOM HALLIGAN, MICROS NW REGION GENERAL MANAGER

MICROS Systems, Inc., an ORLA Endorsed Service Provider, is the leading provider of point-of-sale (POS) systems worldwide, offering systems that meet the unique requirements of all operators from a single terminal restaurant to the largest of chain operations. For more information call ORLA at 503.682.4422.