I originally published this post on the Stuzo Insights blog.
On Feb 10, 2011, Facebook announced breaking news that will ultimately provide better methods for brands to engage and communicate with their customers. These updates include a revamped UI of the Facebook Pages product and the ability to deploy iFrame tabs.
The New Facebook Page UI and What it Means…
At first glance, most users will recognize the new Page looks very similar to a user profile page. Here are some of the notable updates included in this release and what they mean for Page owners:
- IFrame Tabs are enabled: This is a feature we have been excited for at Stuzo! This provides the strategy, development, user experience and creative teams more flexibility in implementing branded experiences on Pages. Formerly many experiences had to bounce to a Facebook Canvas Page or require additional clicks for the user to engage with appropriate content. The release of iFrame tabs will now allow for more streamlined and engaging experiences directly on the Page. Here are just a few examples of the features which we are currently working on: The ability to customize the landing view based on user location or referral source, dynamically updating the view based on the piece of content they are attempting to access, loading of flash elements and interactive front-end features which formerly could not initially load on tabs (note: the auto-play of media items is still disabled, and rightfully so). As a Preferred Developer Consultant, we ensure all programs adhere to Facebook Page Policies and we are helping steer clients in the right direction for their particular strategy. You can access the updated Page Policies here.
- Left-nav formatting: The horizontal tab navigation items have been moved under the profile picture. Along with this the profile picture dimensions have changed from 200×600 to 180×540.
- Recent photos display: Matching the recent profile page changes, a brand can now showcase their 5 most recent photos published at the top of the Page.
- Branded voice: Page administrators can now have a voice across the platform in representation of the brand by linking their Facebook account to the Page. This means a Page can now interact with other users and Pages.
- A Page now has a News Feed: Now that a Page owner’s account can be logged in as a “Page,” they have access to a News Feed similar to regular users. This will allow Pages to curate their own content and have the same abilities as a content consumer.
- “Everyone” wall filter: Fans can now also get more exposure with these recent updates. Wall filters now have 2 options, “Posts by Page” or “Everyone.” This gives users the option to see the most interesting stories first.
- Page “Features” are enhanced: A Page can show other Pages they “Like” in the left sidebar, and also feature “People.” This can help put a voice and personal connection to those who communicate with users on a Page.
- Notifications: Admins of a Page can now receive email notifications when a user posts a comment. Most larger brands are using a third party Publisher tool at this time, which may take this into account. However, this is a good feature for new Page owners to quickly and effectively respond and interact with their users.
- Mutual friends and interests: Users can now see the Pages and friends they have in common with your Page.
These changes will fundamentally provide added opportunities, and with that, challenges across organizations. The first step at the brand level should be to evaluate these new updates, identify the opportunities and disadvantages to their current consumer engagement models, and begin working on the strategic approach to incorporate these new updates within the organization. Adopting these new changes should start internally; to then be best equipped to utilize these features in their day-to-day Page management and engagement strategies.
From a technical perspective, the door is now open (or should I say “unlocked”) for more streamlined experiences on Pages and provide better ways to engage with users through Facebook and social applications.
It’s important for all to note that once you migrate your Page to the new format – it cannot revert back to the previous state. At Stuzo, we are currently working with clients on migrating their development environments, doing an analysis of existing apps and engagement strategies in preparation for a full migration to the new Page layout and features set. We are tremendously excited by this release and look forward to seeing the great results from brands leveraging these emerging opportunities.