Despite the fact that the new Facebook Timeline is “the richest, most customized marketing canvas we’ve ever built” as expressed by Hoefflinger, Director of Global Business Marketing at Facebook, the new layout and functionalities will most likely affect user behavior among other things.
The Facebook Timeline for pages was officially launched at the Facebook Marketing Conference (fMC), along with other advertising and marketing tools that focus on page content. Currently, pages’ admins can start using this innovative product or just preview it. However, starting the 30th of March all pages will be automatically upgraded to the new Timeline.
Taking a closer look at the usability of the new Facebook Timeline, the first challenge that comes to mind is the absence of the customized landing tab “welcome tab”. This means that from now on, all fans must be genuine. Users will only “Like” your page because they really like it, not because you asked them to like it.
On the other hand brands and pages will be forced to act with integrity, as some of the pages’ insights will be available for everyone, unlike before when it was only available for a page’s admins. This means that anyone will be able to see if the fans on the page are within the target audience or not. Thus, Facebook marketers will not be able to fake their pages’ numbers anymore, or else, everyone will see that these pages are fake.
The next phase will witness extreme changes to engagement benchmarks. Fans will only interact with posts on their newsfeed not on the page itself. This is due to the fact that they are not familiar yet with Timeline, and therefore, they won’t feel comfortable posting on pages that have Timelines. As a result, engagement rates will decrease noticeably.
To increase engagement rates, pages’ admins will find themselves obliged to use the new advertising products and methods, which focus on providing quality content to attract genuine fans.
Studies show that pages usually reach 16% of their fans. However, it is expected that this percentage will be decreased to 10% – 5%. When pages’ admins start using Facebook new marketing products, it is guaranteed that they will reach around 75% of their fans.
The below Infographic domnstrates the excpected changes to engagment rates over the upcoming phase. These expectations are based on trends I’ve observed on fan pages related to the regional telecom industry:
Do you think your page will be able to reach the new benchmarks?