When Facebook rolled out its Timeline feature in 2011, reaction was violently mixed. Some found Timeline an appealing innovation, but many thought it was completely tasteless.
Enterprising marketers eventually discovered that Facebook Timeline has useful features that enable them to grab the attention of their audience more effectively.
Facebook’s Timeline is already more than a year old, yet not everybody appreciates the useful tools it has to offer. Features such as Highlighting, Pinning, and Milestones, if used properly, can give your Facebook marketing campaign some extra kick.
The use of Highlighting
Highlighting allows you to showcase a post or an image so it shows across the entire width of the Timeline. When you highlight a post, that makes it more attention-grabbing. Your audience recognizes that you are placing a higher importance on this post than the others. By highlighting, you focus their attention on the content you want them to take special notice of.
When highlighting posts on your Facebook Timeline, keep the following points in mind:
- While pinned posts (more on this later) tend to stand out more than other posts, for sheer size, highlighted posts hold greater value in the eyes of your audience.
- While there are no limits as to how many posts you can highlight, you cannot highlight and pin a post at the same time. You can only pin or highlight a post.
- To highlight, hover your mouse over the post you wish to promote. A star icon will appear at the upper right corner of the post. Click on it to highlight. To remove the highlight, simply click on the star again.
- Be aware, however, that once you highlight a post, you cannot keep it at the top of your Timeline by pinning it. Posts that are highlighted appear in chronological order so that older highlighted posts will appear further down your posted content.
Highlighting a post serves to emphasize your most interesting posts. You may use it for the best testimonials and the most encouraging comments your business receives.
You can also use highlighted posts to emphasize your featured products and services or to draw people’s attention to an important announcement or a contest.
The Pinning feature
This is one of the most interesting options on Facebook Timeline. It allows you to keep important content, status updates, or images at the top of your timeline for up to seven days.
To use the pinning feature, here are some of the things you need to know:
- You can only pin one status update, post, image, or video at the top of your Timeline at a time.
- The pinned item will always appear at the head of the left column of your Facebook timeline as though it’s your most recent update.
- The post will stay at the top of your Facebook Timeline for a maximum of seven days, unless you remove the pin manually before the seven days are up.
- To pin a post, hover your mouse over the item you wish to pin. A pencil icon will appear at the upper right corner of the post. Click on it and click on “Pin to Top.”
- To unpin a post, simply hover your mouse over the pinned post, click on the pencil icon and select the “unpin” option.
What marketers like about pinning is that it effectively emphasizes an important post or piece of content on their Facebook Page Timeline. For those who have time-sensitive offers, pinning is a very useful feature. They can post promotions for as long as they like before the seven-day expiration of the pin.
Pinning can also be used for a welcome message to new members of your Facebook page.
Pinning works for any type of post, whether they’re text updates, images, videos, or shared content. When you use this feature, remember to choose the most important post you want to emphasize. You can just highlight the rest with the Highlight feature.
Using the Milestones feature
One of the incredibly useful features of Facebook’s Timeline that many marketers haven’t noticed is the Milestones feature. This tool enables you to present a story for your business via texts or graphics.
With Milestones, you can draw your audience’s attention to the most important dates in your business history and its greatest achievements. However, specific milestones will appear only on the date you actually placed them.
To create a milestone, here are several things you need to know and consider:
- To create a milestone, click on the “Event” link at the top of the Status bar. Select “Milestones.”
- You can create several milestones for your page.
- You can create any number of milestones for any dates, whether they occurred in the past or are current events.
Milestones is a great Facebook marketing tool, if used properly. You may use graphics, a compelling piece of information, or calls to action to engage your audience more effectively.
There are other useful Facebook Page Timeline features that marketers can use to engage customers. But I will reserve them for later. Give these a try, and keep an eye out for my next post on this subject.
All signs indicate that Facebook will remain the dominating force in social media over the foreseeable future. That’s why it’s important to take advantage of every tool it offers to make your marketing efforts fun and productive.