Archive for March, 2012

FACEBOOK FOR BUSINESS. CHANGES, PART TWO.

Hope you all had a chance to read the previously posted blog entitled “Facebook for business. Changes part one”. If not I suggest scrolling down and checking that one out first.

In this post I intend to pick up where I left off on the Timeline and talk about Friend Activity, Pinned Posts, Larger Story Layouts and Milestones.

Friend Activity will appear at the top right of the timeline under your Apps. This is where the visitor will see the number of their friends that “like” the page as well as a sampling of their profile pictures and featured friend’s comments. This area will be shown to friends and non-friends alike and will always occupy this spot, no tags required.

Pinned Posts will appear on the top left of your Timeline under the Profile image. You can “pin” any post on your timeline to this top spot and it will stay there for 7 days. I strongly encourage these posts to have calls to action, deals, sales, links etc. Another interesting note is that these posts can appear to users targeted by location.

Larger Story Layouts (or starred posts) are interesting to play with as they typically grab a little more attention as they occupy both sides of the Timeline. Again I would encourage calls to action, links deals and so on. I would also encourage the use of these larger stories to instill your branding. Use nice big photos and videos, highlight recent activities and events. Show off some new products!

Milestones are similar to highlighted (or starred) posts. You are able to define the event, location, date, story and image or video. The admin of the page must be the one to set up a Milestone and once created it will create a date link of the Timeline sidebar.

I hope this second installment has been helpful and I realize that I am breezing through a lot of different topics fairly quickly but I wanted to give everyone a brief overview. If you have more detailed questions remember you can always contact us at marketing@tli2.com. Stay tuned for the final installment coming early next week!

Facebook for business. Changes, part one.

As many of you may know, Facebook is under going yet another change. While it’s available now if you’re ready for the switch, on March 30th all business Facebook pages will be forced into the new “Timeline” format. Now, there are going to quite a few changes and in an effort to keep these blogs from taking up your entire morning reading I am going to cover these changes in a couple (two or three) separate installments.

So today I am going to go over the Profile and Cover Images and Apps (formally known as “tabs”).

The Profile Image is the smaller image that appears on top of the cover image (banner image) in the bottom left hand corner. First of all the image needs to be square. It should be able to stand alone, as it will appear by itself often, but should also work well with your cover image.

The Cover Image is the large banner-like picture that appears at the top of the homepage. Unfortunately there are quite a few restrictions as to what this image can be. First of all the max image size is 815px width by 315 px height and a minimum size of 399 px wide. If you exceed the max or don’t meet the min Facebook will resize your image. Next you can not have any calls to action, that means no prompting to “like” the page, share the site or visit their website. You can have no contact info and no pricing or discount/sales information. You should stay consistent with your branding and can certainly have logos, taglines and product images but that is about the extent of the advertising you can do with this image space.

Apps used to be called tabs, and you can make your own, find premade ones online or just use those provided by Facebook. The thumbnails for the Apps are located beneath the like and message buttons on the right below the Cover Image. The thumbnail images are customizable at 111 by 74 px (anything smaller will appear centered surrounded by whitespace) with a 1 px internal border and, when clicked on, will expand to take up the entire page at width of 810 px. On the homepage up to four thumbnails will be displayed next to a drop down menu display your remaining (up to 12) Apps. The first (leftmost) thumbnail will be photos and cannot be changed from being in the first position, however you can choose what photo is featured in the thumbnail. The second will be, by default, “likes”, however, you can choose to place it anywhere in the order that your Apps are displayed, this goes for all other Apps as well. Basically you can choose the order of appearance of your Apps, with the exception of the first, being photos.

One of the unfortunate changes made to the Apps feature is that you can no longer set a default landing tab (App). Whereas before you could set your page to take visitors directly to the “like us” or “become a fan” page, now visitors will be taken right to the homepage. You can send out links to take people directly to an App but general visitors (like someone that used the search bar) will be taken to the homepage. The reason that this is unfortunate is that people when people are taken directly to the “become a fan page” is much more likely to do so than when people have to click on the thumbnail to get there, thus hurting your ability to network. You can have a lot of fun with Apps, using them to make games, client stories, recipe books and so much more.

In a few days I’ll have another post up to take you further down the Timeline. I hope this one was helpful and I certainly strongly encourage EVERY business to make a Facebook page as social media is a very powerful marketing tool, and in the kingdom of social media Facebook is king.

As always, if you need some help setting up your new Facebook timeline or need any help with your business website and marketing contact us at marketing@tli2.com , also don’t forget to check out and “like” us on Facebook! www.facebook.com/timberlineinteractive

The Only Audit You’ll Ever Ask For

Websites should be attractive, consistent with your company’s branding, and designed to sell. Sometimes a few little tweaks to your look and function can make a big difference in how well you are serving your clients.

Everyone wants their website to look top notch. Who wouldn’t? We all want to be represented in the best possible light. But let’s be honest, there will always be someone out there that has a newer, more creative, fancier looking site. Keeping up with the Joneses is tough on the internet, and constantly doing full site redesigns is not only difficult but expensive and time consuming. Now I am not saying a total overhaul is never a good idea, certainly if you haven’t had any major design changes in 5 years it’s probably time to invest in one. Short of starting from scratch lies a different option.
.
It’s very difficult to judge your own website (or any visual representation of yourself or company), it’s often either one of two extremes. You either can’t stand it so much that you can’t see the positive aspects or you love it so much that you can’t see the flaws. That’s why on occasion it’s a really good idea to do what we like to call a “site audit”. Don’t worry we aren’t talking about the IRS rummaging through your files. All I mean is having a professional take a detailed look at your site. We look at your general visual design as well as the functionality, searchability, and how well it is selling your products. After doing so we provide a detailed report of recommended changes, why we suggest them, and an estimate on the amount of time it would take us to implement these changes. You certainly are not obligated to make these changes, or you may just pick one or two for now and keep the rest as a wish list!

A few of the areas that we will take our magnifying glasses to will be:
Basic visual design
Navigation functionality
Checkout processes
Search engine optimization
Product page organization
And much more

We have had quite a few of our clients take us up on this opportunity and make some of our suggested changes much to their benefit in profits and traffic. Don’t get left behind, drop us a line at marketing@tli2.com!