March 24th, 2009
by Amy Dunn
For the past few weeks, I have heard a great deal of complaining about the new Facebook layout. In fact I have been invited on several occassions to join groups in Facebook demanding they bring back the old. I have to admit- I was among the first to complain and moan about having to figure out where everything was and get used to the new “tabbed” layout that Facebook has implemented. But I gotta say people, the new look is growing on me. This is not a case of the famous 1980s “New Coke vs Classic Coke” fiasco. I think these changes were necessary, and will ultimately make navigating Facebook a lot easier to do.
I wanted to reference another brilliant blog post by the folks at Hubspot. I read their material daily to stay fresh on current social media news and ideas-and will often try to share it with my Web Marketing Therapy and other friends of the Wild Web Women. In this case, the article that inspired me was Top 4 New Facebook Features Businesses Will Love.
The most exciting change that we are seeing in the new Facebook layout has been an expansion of the use of the wall. This means that if a business has a Facebook Business Page their wall will be the featured location on the page and all information that is posted into the wall (updates, links, fan posts) will be fed to the fans of the page in the RSS feed. Remember- a page is not a profile. Profiles are for people and pages are for businesses. Once you open your profile, you can promote your business by creating a page. Here is what is really exciting to me- if a fan makes a post on a business page wall, that is fed into the fan’s news feed. and the news feed is sent to all of the friends of that person. In short, the new and enhanced use of the business page wall in Facebook will increase visibility and functionality.
According to the article (which explains this point better than I can), “The Wall is a place that aggregates posts by the Page or about the Page. This includes any content shared by you (links, photos, videos, AND short text-only messages) and posts by your Fans, left for you. With this change, the Wall updates that you post will publish to your Fans’ news feeds, and posts by your Fans will go to their friends’ news feeds. The more content you create and the more you engage with your Fans, the more people you will be able to reach on a more regular basis.”
Another exciting change with the Facebook layout is the use of tabs. As I mentioned before- everyone I know is frustrated and confused by this feature. But the article points out very good reasons to embrace this feature. The old Facebook layout was one page and very flat. Users would have to scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page to see all of the great features and applications added to the page or to the user’s profile. The new tabbed layout is much cleaner and easier for fans of your business to navigate and allowing them to easily locate new news, photos and updates.
In sum, the Facebook Business Fan pages now function more like a user profile. You can make status updates and add other Facebook applications that were once available. To give an example, I am a fan of the Suze Orman Fan page (who isn’t crazy about Suze?). So- I make a post on Suze’s Facebook Business Page stating how much I appreciate her great advice, and that post goes into my newsfeed so my friends know that I commented on Suze’s page. I love that businesses can now post their status updates on the wall for fans to see, and fans can post their own messages to the business and the updates are fed into the Facebook newsfeed.
I am certain there is much more to tell and explore with this new layout and I am merely scratching the surface on this topic. Hopefully I will get some good suggestions/comments from other Facebook users who have made wonderful discoveries of their own on how web marketers can best utlize the resources available this is social networking powerhouse. Tell me- how do you like the new layout?