A few weeks ago Facebook announced a new page layout and several functional changes that will be pushed to all Facebook page owners on March 10. The Social Media Examiner had a great roundup of 8 new Facebook page changes, but there are three of these changes that are particularly interesting to me:
1. Get email updates on comments: This doesn’t seem like a big deal but it is. When people commented on your Facebook page before you never knew it happened until you went back out to the page to check for new comments. Now, Facebook will email the administrators and let them know that a comment was added. This helps administrators both moderate more quickly and respond to people more quickly which should help increase engagement with customers and fans.
2. No more tabs: We’ve come to know and love the tabs across the top of our Facebook pages. In 10 days they’ll be gone. In their place are some small icons along the left-hand side of the page. From what I understand, these changes don’t break custom tab designs but I can’t help but think people will be less likely to find them now that they’re less prominently displayed. Also, with the new page layout you’ll can only display five of these subpages before the person has to click “more” to see the rest. Just when custom tabs were really taking off it will be interesting to see if this change hurts their rapid adoption rate.
3. Be the brand: One of the biggest hurdles for organizations using Facebook is that they have been limited in their ability to be proactive on people’s profile pages. With the new page change, you get the chance to “use Facebook as” the company or organization you’re administrating the page for. So, for the first time you can comment or like things on other pages and it won’t show up as your personal profile, instead it will be the organization/business doing the liking and commenting. That’s great for brands to increase engagement if they use this wisely.
If we’ve learned anything about Facebook it’s that they don’t stay with one thing too long. This is yet another reminder that we shouldn’t get too caught up in the function of the platform and neglect the opportunity to engage customers and prospects with the platform. If you keep that in mind you can roll with the changes a lot more easily.