Facebook Updates: What You Need to Know to Stay in the Loop
Social media can feel like a moving target at times. It’s hard to stay up-to-date on everything happening around the Internet. In this post, we focus on Facebook and some of the recent changes that will help you to stay in the loop!
Facebook Turns 8
First, birthday wishes are in order to Facebook who turned eight years old on February 4th! Happy birthday, Facebook.
Several months ago Mashable created a slideshow of the Evolution of the Facebook Profile showing how your profile has looked throughout the years. Fun to see all the changes over the years.
Timeline for Facebook Profiles
One of the biggest changes for Facebook in the latter part of 2011 and into early 2012 is Timeline for Facebook Profiles.
Facebook reported on their blog on January 24, 2012 that Timeline is now available worldwide.
Timeline, is defined as “The new kind of profile that lets you highlight the photos, posts and life events that help you tell your story. Furthermore they report that Timeline will be rolled out to all Facebook users over the next few weeks. Note: At the time when you get timeline you’ll have 7 days to preview what’s there, and you’ll have a chance to add or hide whatever you want before anyone else sees it.
Niall Harbison discusses some very useful features and tricks to get the most out of Facebook timeline:
- activate subscribers (discussed in more detail below)
- add photos to your timeline map
- add life events (you can also add events retrospectively e.g. work & education, family & relationships, home & living, health & wellness, travel & experiences)
- create a unique look for your page with your timeline cover photo
- add/delete stuff from your timeline
- hide the sidebar
- block people from seeing your timeline
- change your cover photo on the go
- play beautiful full size videos
- control what appears on timeline of others
Timeline Cover Images
A cover is the larger photo at the top of your timeline, right above your profile picture. Note: Like your profile picture, cover images are public, which means anyone visiting your timeline will be able to see them.
The image you select for your cover has to be at least 720 pixels wide (note too that it’s best to load a high-res image). Exact dimensions have been listed as 850px wide by 350px high. To learn more about how to add and edit the cover image Facebook provides directions on their help page.
Mashable offers these suggestions for making the most of your timeline cover photo.
New Open Graph Applications for Timelines
These new applications, referred to as “frictionless,” operate this way–after a user provides permission once, they automatically share users’ engagement with the app on Facebook.
Facebook reports, “New timeline apps are now available from Foodspotting, Foodily, Ticketmaster, Pinterest, Rotten Tomatoes, Pose, Kobo, Gogobot, TripAdvisor, and others. You can now enhance your timeline with apps that help you tell your story, whether you love to cook, eat, travel, run, or review movies.”
Timeline on Mobile
Timeline is now available on Facebook for iOS version 4.1, for iPhone and iPod Touch devices.
Timeline for Facebook Pages Coming Soon (?)
Mari Smith recently reported in her webinar, “Facebook 2012: What You Need To Know” that on February 29, Facebook is hosting their first ever invite-only Facebook marketing conference. She says that it’s been rumored that “Facebook is going to be introducing and announcing timeline for pages.”
Stay tuned for more info!
Facebook Users, Newsfeed and User Interaction
Facebook reports having 845 million active users and of those 845 million users, 50% or half of them log on every single day for almost an hour a day.
Mari Smith says, “What happens with that newsfeed is the more you interact with a friend, the more youʼll see their content in your newsfeed. The same thing goes with fan pages. The more a fan interacts with your content and your page, comes right to your wall etc, the more they will see your content in their newsfeed.”
The big change with regard to Facebook fan pages and fansʼ interaction with it is that Facebook removed the need to first “like” a page. Visitors can interact with that fan page whether they click the like button or not.
Mari offers these 5 Keys For Creating Guaranteed Consistent Visibility, Engagement, And Growth
- Share relevant content
- You want to test your own frequency of posts
- You want to focus on engagement
- Focus on consistent proactive growth
- Keep it fresh
Facebook Subscribe Button
Facebook launched the Subscribe button in September 2011 which allows users to follow updates with a more customizable News Feed and increased privacy. You can control what types of updates you see from a person and how often. “When you’re subscribed to someone, you can choose what to see from them in your News Feed. Use the Subscribed button at the top of someone’s profile (timeline) to choose the type of updates you’d like to see from them in your News Feed.” You can learn more about the Subscribe button Facebook’s help page.
Be Conscious of Hidden Posts on Facebook Pages
“Hidden posts” is a “spam like filter” section of comments that Facebook identified as being spam. However, there may be times when comments are sent there that are not spam so it’s important to change that area to make sure you’re not missing comments.
Unhide the comment–You have to be an administrator of the page in order to see hidden posts. If there is a comment that you want to appear on your wall, not hidden in the spam, then hover your mouse over the upper right hand corner of the comment and a little link will appear. Click on it and select “Unhide Comment.” It will then be sent to your wall. It will appear where it would have been chronologically if it hadn’t gone to the “hidden posts” section, so you might have to scroll down to find it.
What other Facebook updates/changes would you add?