Many of you have had a chance to play around with Facebook Timeline on your personal profiles.
But by March 30th 2012, Facebook will roll out Timeline for business pages as well. Timeline will change the design and layout of business pages and make them look like personal profiles. Here’s what they will look like:
The new focus will be to make your content more compelling by using visual elements to tell your corporate story i.e. content marketing. Hospitals will have a great opportunity with Timeline to share some of their history, their current activities and perhaps even their vision with their fans by using photos, videos, apps and company milestones.
Essentially Timeline will give hospitals (and all brands for that matter) a blank template and a chance to share how their story has been built up over the years.
Here are 5 ways that hospitals can use Timeline for content marketing (i.e. to tell their corporate story)
#1.Timeline Cover Photo
The new Timeline cover photo will give you a banner space of 851 by 315 pixels across the top of your new page to create a visually stimulating narrative that symbolizes what your hospital is all about.
Keep in mind that with the elimination of welcome tabs (customized landing tabs for brand new visitors) your Timeline cover photo is the first thing that new visitors will see on your page.
Make sure that it is a vibrant image that intrigues your visitors from the get go. Some experts suggest that you should change your Timeline cover photo every so often to keep things fresh and interesting.
#2. Larger, Highlighted and Pinned posts
To help you tell your corporate stories, pictures and videos will now be larger and more eye-catching. You will also be able to highlight a story by clicking the star icon (on the top-right corner of a post) so that it spans all the way across your Timeline and therefore captures even more attention.
Another new feature is that you will now be able to pin a story to the top of your Timeline for up to one week. To do this you will click the pencil icon on the top-right corner of your post and select ‘Pin to top’. This will give more emphasis to your story as it remains pinned to the top of your Timeline for a longer period of time.
#3. About Section
While this section is not new, it has been given more prominence right below your new profile picture. Be sure to provide a concise and accurate description of your hospital and to include relevant keywords and your website url as well.
The Milestones feature is new and will enable you to highlight the most important dates and events in your hospital’s timeline.
For example University Hospitals Timeline illustrates dates when they received some of their biggest donations, when they were featured on the news, pictures of a new medical center under construction, stories of collaboration with other brands for community development programs, short video clips of patient testimonials and many other stories.
Keep in mind that because your fans’ posts are in a different area of your Timeline, your Milestones will be more focused on your story and so you should make sure that they are visually interesting to draw more fans to them.
#5. Tabs and Apps
While many brands are upset about the disappearance of their custom landing tab (or welcome tab) the new apps are an opportunity for you to be more creative with your hospital’s branding.
For starters, choose your most engaging apps and display them prominently where fans can see them. Consider making one of your apps a welcome app and illustrate it with a label that says ‘Welcome’.
Then re-name the app with a call to action such as ‘Click me!’ And because you can change the position of (some of) your apps, be sure to give the welcome app a prominent place where fans can see it and click on it.
The new Facebook Timeline for pages is finally here and it is here to stay. While some of the changes it brings are frustrating, be encouraged that you now have a great opportunity to tell your corporate story in a more creative and unique way.
The more you can make your Timeline visually appealing, the more successful you will be in telling your hospital’s story on Facebook.
Over to you: Has your hospital switched over to Timeline for pages? How have you used the new features to tell your story? Please share in the comment box below