There has been a ton of conversation on Facebook and Twitter about the new Timeline. Whether we like it or not, it’s here. Before we all go cry in our like-button shaped pillows, let’s think deeper about what a social strategy is and if these changes really mean we have to go back to the drawing board.
Content will always be king.
No matter how witty or savvy a marketer thinks they are, without content they won’t go far. All rhyming quips aside, content should always be the center of your social strategy. Without engagement and interaction there is no ‘social’ in your ‘media’. Learn what content types evoke a reaction from your fans. Ask questions, solicit opinions and don’t be afraid to be silly. People are bombarded with branded messages every day, so make sure your content is a sincere mix of fun and marketing. No amount of changes that Facebook sends our way will take content out of the social equation.
The party is on the News Feed.
Many brands expressing concern for the Timeline changes might be jumping the gun a bit. Based on a study done by comScore, Facebook users spend 27% of their time on the newsfeed. This suggests that as marketers we should be concentrating on making our content as Edgerank friendly as possible to insure that our content has a large enough reach to be in our Fans’ news feeds. In the same study, users only spend 10% of their time interacting with Apps & Tools which are now located *gasp* on the Timeline. Put yourself in the mindset of a Facebook user. When you log in, where do you spend the most time? I would guess the average user scans their news feeds way more than branded pages, unless there is content to bring them in.
In the end, it’s natural for a majority of people to resist forced change. However, the Timeline changes really do not force you to rethink your entire Facebook strategy if you have compelling content. Marketers should have nothing to fear as long as their content is fresh, fun and consumable.