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Is Your Business Facebook Page Ready for Timeline?

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Timeline for Facebook Pages arrives at the end of this month 'Like' it (excuse the pun) or not, so is your business ready for the changes?

As with everyday user accounts like yours and mine, Timeline it hasn't been greeted by everyone with open arms. However, since this implementation is definitely going ahead, perhaps this is a case of embracing the inevitable. Along with the Admin feature, one of the main things that will be interest is the actual timeline that allows users and brands to tell their stories. If you're curious, you can build your timeline up before choosing to publish it - keeping in mind that ready or not it's coming at the end of the month.

This is where businesses can become more creative and is certainly an approach that Facebook wants us all to adopt. Facebook wants to be 'the' destination online for both consumers and brands with Timeline just one intricate part of the jigsaw in making this happen. If the social network can encourage brands to invest time in producing their stories through its Timeline functionality they create the environment to increase stickiness, engagement, and interaction which bodes well to sell in other services, not least advertising.

The social network has certainly been busy with mobile apps, messages, striving for 1 billion users and an IPO, but its ambitions doesn't start here. With Google+, Pinterest (the latest media darling) and Twitter all innovating, the race for consumer affection and more importantly time has never been so competitive. For years Facebook has never been seen as a destination for business-to-business (B2B) with dedicated business social networks LinkedIn a preferred choice. The new approach here in the form of Timeline could be a way that Facebook wins over a B2B crowd. The next test? The reaction from the aforementioned and how they respond.

But where to start, and how can businesses work with Facebook Timeline for Pages, rather against it? Web design and development agency Integricity has created its '10 things you need to know about revamped Facebook Pages infographic' offering practical guidance and tips. From what Facebook is changing up, the changes in the Admin panel, Facebook Insights, choosing the right cover image, re-sizing images and the using the right rich connect to populate and maintain your Facebook Page; it's a great summary of what you will need to consider.

A business should always review its social media resources and assets contemplating how to integrate then into the business operations and promotions (from advertising, customer services, marketing, PR et al). Facebook changing things up again is a great opportunity for a business to do this; with the eagerness of brands and Facebook to do this there are more than a few of examples to draw inspiration from. Think it, and it may be there.

Five tips consider when thinking of Facebook Pages*

  1. Review competitors and brands that you like and develop your voice
  2. Keep it simple and don't over complicate your messages and objectives
  3. Decide how you may differentiate your brand with the content you use
  4. Use high quality content and ensure you own or have copyright permission
  5. Facebook Pages is a great platform to communicate, not ram sales down your audiences throats

Above all, think about the heritage and stories about, around, for and with the brand - how Timeline can help you share this with your customers. It's can be a great platform regardless of the size and stature of the brand as long as you don't impose limitations upon your imagination.

*Note that this is not an exhaustive list

10 things you need to know about revamped Facebook Pages infographic

Tim Gibbon is founder and director at communications consultancy Elemental