Since May 18, Facebook has been in the headlines – and not just because of its IPO. Facebook’s been making a slew of small updates that are relevant to Facebook marketers. Because social media pros are busier than ever, we’ve gathered the top changes that have pushed live:
Since February 29, thoughts of Timeline have been swirling. When Facebook flipped the switched in late March, every page officially got a facelift, including big changes for tabs.
For brands using Facebook, tabs are where they are free to create experiences for their fans and customers. From contests and giveaways to exclusive content and Facebook storefronts, tabs (now apps) are the places on Facebook where the standard functionality of the platform ends and the possibilities of interactive, share-worthy content begins. With Timeline those spaces are bigger. The width of apps have jumped from 520 pixels to 810 pixels.
Social media marketers today are faced with more choices than ever. Even the possibilities for customizing Facebook Pages can be overwhelming. Deciding which Facebook tabs to create is part of this puzzle. Knowing your audience, using analytics to understand what is working, and knowing what you’re trying to accomplish will help you focus on the types of Facebook tabs that will work best.
Here are nine common types of tabs you’ll find on Facebook Pages. Each has its own purpose and can be tailored to fit your brand.
1. Welcome: Welcome tabs are a natural addition to a Facebook presence. They are an opportunity to greet new Facebook visitors and steer them toward further action, such as asking for an email to keep up with the brand through a newsletter or linking to other tabs of your Facebook Pages (such as promo or coupon tab) to interact further.
Example: Dingo gives a quick rundown of why pet owners love the Dingo brand and provides a chance to sign up for the newsletter, which offers exclusive discounts.
One of Shoutlet’s most frequently used features is its DIY, drag-and-drop custom Facebook tab builder. Users select from a list of web apps, modules, and other features to build unique tabs that their fans will enjoy. This week the Shoutlet development team has added eight new modules to the list:
- Foursquare: Include an “Add to Foursquare” button on any tab. Visitors click to add your venue to their Foursquare to-do list. The next time they view your venue in the Foursquare mobile app, the to-do about your venue pops up, along with any notes they’ve made about it.
- Like button: Add a Like button to a tab. Perfect for acquiring fans without fan-gating.
- Send button: Makes sharing individual Facebook tabs, Facebook Pages, or pages on your website a snap.
- Activity Feed: Pulls in the latest Facebook-related activity from your website to show users what content is resonating and drives additional traffic to your main web presence.
- Facepile: Fans can see which friends are connected to your brand’s Facebook page or another domain you specify.
- Live Stream: Host chats using Facebook’s Live Stream, allowing fans to converse in real time for events, Q&A sessions, celebrity or expert Facebook Page “appearances,” and more.
- YouTube player: Cross-promote your YouTube videos on Facebook or showcase fan videos about your brand.
These new updates are in addition to the variety of tools available in Shoutlet to build custom tabs, such as iFrame, image, Facebook comments, and text modules. As always, Shoutlet’s full contest platform, Shop & Share Facebook storefronts, and Shoutlet web apps (video player, audio and video podcast player, Twitter reader, RSS reader, sign-up web app, slideshow, clickable image web app, and others) can be used to create innovative Facebook tabs as well.
With so many “building blocks” for tabs, Shoutlet customers are able to publish custom tabs quickly, pre-schedule the dates tabs run, and track their impact. Assuming just five of these elements are used on a tab at once (although more can be used!), that’s at least 11,881,376 possible combinations brands can use on a Facebook tab.
Now the question is: What combination will you use to engage your fans?