Facebook has recently made some changes to the Facebook fan pages and the new layout is going to call for some new ways of thinking. As of now you can pick to change over to the new layout or wait until March 10th for the update to be rolled out to all the fan pages automatically. I think one of the big changes to note is the fact that Facebook has chosen to go away with static FBML pages and apps. Users will now have to use iframes to build custom apps and pages within your fan page. Your static FBML pages will still work, but on March 11th you will no longer be able to add FBML apps and pages. The following is 7 new features and changes that I think are important to the new Facebook pages.
- New navigation in left sidebar: The horizontal tabs that use to be on the top of the fan pages have been moved to the left sidebar under the fan page profile picture. The info text box that was under the profile picture in the old layout has been moved to the info tab.
- New photo strip at top: One of the first things you will notice is the new photos section at the top of the fan page. These are the most recent photos that have been added to the Wall or photos that tag your page. Photos that people post on your wall, will not show up in this section.
- Profile picture resized: Now you will only have a 180 x 540 pixel area to work with for your profile.
- Use Facebook as your page: I really like this new feature. You can now comment, post as, and like other pages as your Page/brand. This is a powerful new feature.
- Featured Pages and Admins: Now you will be able to display which pages you like in a new section in the left sidebar of your page called the “Featured Likes.” There is also a “Page Owners” section that will let you display the admin(s) of the page.
- Wall Filters: Users can now set how they want the wall posts to be displayed. There are two filters: “Posts by Page” and “Everyone.” The admin of the page will have two additional filters: “Most Recent” and “Hidden Posts.”
- Email Notifications: This is a great new feature that gives you the ability to send email notifications for any activity on your wall. Facebook has even added a new spam setting so you can specify a lists of words or terms that will be blocked from showing on your page.
What this means for page admins and brand marketing
Just reading through the new features sparked all kinds of great thoughts about new marketing efforts with the new Facebook pages. I think one of the big changes that lets you use Facebook as your brand is going to help your social media marketing strategy tremendously. This will give you the ability to comment and posts things on other pages as your brand, which means more brand awareness.
The new photo section can also be used in innovative ways. Since Facebook is going to lists the five most recent photos, you can use this to market different areas of your business. I can see this section being used for promotions, branding, offers, new products/service, etc. Everyone likes to look at pictures, so the new photo section is prime real estate on the new page layout.
The new notification system is going to help brands react faster to comments and fan activity on pages. You no longer have to check your page every 10 minutes to see if you need to moderate or reply to a new comment from someone trying to interact with your brand. Overall, I think the new features are great for your brand and social media presence. Facebook is slowly going to dominating the whole internet. =)
What are your thoughts on the new Facebook page layout and features? Use the comment section below and let us know your thoughts.