How You Are Not Ready For Facebook Timeline

Posted on March 5th 2012

How You Are Not Ready For Facebook Timeline

How you are not ready for TimelineTimeline for brands has come in and all Facebook page owners will see their pages switch over on 30 March.

We all know there will be no default landing tabs and instead everyone will land on your Timeline (wall); what you probably won't know is that come 30 March your old tabs will not only be ineffective but they will break.

Why your tabs will not work

Even if you direct people to a tab where it prompts people to Like you through a hyperlink or through advertising - as it's no longer the default tab - it won't work for 3 reasons.

1. The Like button is in the top right now and not in the top left / middle.
2. Your tab won't use the full dimensions as they've increased from 520 to 810 pixels in width
3. Tabs don't refresh upon being Liked so you would have to ask people to Like and then refresh the page otherwise they will be left staring at a fan gated tab.

How to make the most of apps

Clearly the focus has shifted from getting people to Like you from tabs - now known as apps - to getting people to connect with the content and actions that matter. You can do this with apps which utilise the full 810 pixel width to showcase your products and services - with an incentive, like a discount - and creating a funnel for visitors to your page. The only example I have seen of a page making the most of the new app system is Get More Fans Today:

Facebook Timeline Apps tabs

Are you ready for Timeline? How are you going to make the most of Facebook apps on your page?

Jack Ashman

Jack Ashman

Jack Ashman is a social media marketing professional working in London. He specialises in Facebook design, strategy and insight. Find him on LinkedIn:
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Posted on March 6th 2012 at 4:44AM

I have read a lot of complaints about Facebook's "Timeline." I don't spend a whole lot of time there but I will say that I used to spend more before they changed it all up. It is a little too time consuming now.

Facebook always has to change things and it is not always a good casino change so hopefully they will one day realize that these changes just drives people away.

Posted on March 8th 2012 at 6:55PM

I was up late last night trying to figure it all out in time for an all-day social media workshop I'm presenting Saturday.

Here's what I managed:

In my novel's page, what used to be the "Welcome" tab I made into a "Excerpt" tab and I redid my Pagemodo page with an excerpt. I'm not so concerned about getting likes as getting people to buy my book.

In my other two pages, I added my Networked Blogs & Twitter app.

I like the Milestones feature and that you can message your fans and they can message the page. Just like any change, it'll take some getting used to.

Giselle Aguiar

Posted on March 8th 2012 at 7:37PM

The example you showed doesn't meet with the new Facebook page guidelines though as found here.


Covers may not include:
i.    price or purchase information, such as "40% off" or "Download it on";
ii.    contact information such as a website address, email, mailing address, or information that should go in your Page's "About" section;
iii.    references to Facebook features or actions, such as "Like" or "Share" or an arrow pointing from the cover photo to any of these features; or


No more arrows leading to the "Like" button or even saying within the cover image "Like Us" is now a no-no.

Shana Ray
Posted on March 9th 2012 at 7:41PM

The cover photo is different than these custom tabs/apps.  They can still have a call to action and a request to "like"

Posted on March 11th 2012 at 7:15AM

A good summary of the changes and the work ahead of us.  I think point 2 is the least concerning, as your tab will still work, it just won't take full advantage of the newly available extra width.  This will come in handy when I talk about the changes to brand pages at the next Facebook Developer Garage London.

Posted on March 12th 2012 at 1:55PM

I was told on March 9 that the bug that was causing Like-gated apps to not refresh and re-load the page has been fixed - were you aware of that, or has anyone else heard of that?