Today is a big day in the social world – Starting today, Facebook is rolling out the new Timeline feature for businesses! 

As a PR professional, I realize the power of a Facebook page for our clients (if you’re still not sure how to leverage FB for your business, here are 32 ways to use it).  But the Timeline feature has been quite the controversy among Facebook’s 800 million users since it was announced – people either love it or hate it.  And I have to admit, I have been dreading that my personal Facebook profile will be forced to change to this new feature.  According to a recent survey, I’m certainly not alone.

You know the saying “business and pleasure don’t mix”? Well, this may be a counter-example to the old adage. I was initially skeptical that Facebook’s Timeline feature would add value to businesses, but reading this article changed my opinion.               

The main takeaways from the article is that your new Timeline page will showcase more photos and people have easier access to quickly read about past activity of your business.

Why businesses should love Timeline:

  • People love photos – The more the merrier when it comes to showcasing a product, design, contest, or advertisement.  Adding a visual element engages the audience, and timeline provides a new and powerful way to do that. Added bonus? The Timeline layout helps photos tell the story of your brand.
  • Less work to find creative information – the way Timeline is laid out, people can instantly see lots of photos at once on your main landing page.  The less you have to make a potential customer search for something in the first few minutes of viewing your page, the better.
  • Go back in time, faster– This is the very feature that many people don’t like about Timeline, when it comes to their personal pages.  Instead of having to constantly scroll down, page by page, to view past posts, with Timeline, you can pick which year you’d like to view with one simple click of the mouse.
    • This may not be so great if you don’t want a future boss learning more than they may want to about your college days, but this is GREAT for businesses. It provides them an opportunity to quickly show off the successes, events, and products their business experienced from months or years ago, without having to making customer spend time searching.
  • You have 30 days to test drive – Facebook is giving businesses 30 days to get used to the new page layout. This gives you the opportunity to see what your design will look like and tweak it if you don’t like what you see. Since it will eventually be an enforced layout, this is a great “test drive” period to find out what you like about the Timeline layout and how you can use it best.

Bottom line – even if you are not a fan of the Timeline for your own personal use, it may add more value to your business page than you expect.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one!

Are you looking forward to branding your business on Facebook Timeline or do you prefer the traditional view?