Facebook Timeline for Pages = Anti-Community?

Imagine you have a branded page on Facebook.  Perhaps you’re a marketing professional managing it for a client or an employer.  You’ve worked hard to grow your “fan” base on Facebook and turn those fans into brand ambassadors.  Maybe a few of those fans even check in every single day to say hello or to ask a question.   Then … this happens:

  1. Facebook changes the rules, making those fan posts significantly less prominent.
  2. Your fans notice.
  3. They don’t feel like they’re “front and center” anymore.
  4. Perhaps they even stop posting because they figure no one will see their posts anyhow.
  5. All of your hard work has been wasted.

The above situation is a possibility that Facebook page administrators are dealing with, or will be dealing with after this weekend when the new Timeline for Pages format pushes out to everyone.

Click for a larger view.

Previously, posts from fans on a page were given the same weight as posts from the administrator, so long as the administrator allowed fan posts.  In the new Timeline format, that’s truly not the case.  While a few fan posts may make it into the “stream” the majority of them are now relegated to a small box on the right side of the page.  If you look at the image to the right, you’ll see the “Posts by Others” box outlined in red.  For the most part, this is the only place you’ll see posts by non-administrators.

You can switch the page view to show ONLY posts by others. If you click on a small grayed-out box above the main stream of posts (outlined in green in my screenshot) you can show views such as only posts by non-admins or posts only by your friends who are also fans of the page.  I’d wager, however, that most people won’t notice that button or bother with it.

It’s completely inexplicable that Facebook would set pages up this way when they claim to be all about sharing and community.  Most of the reason that people bother to post on social media sites is to be recognized.  If their posts are hard to find, it ceases to be worth the time.

Comments

Comments for this post

  1. Josh says:

    Good article. I’d read about the changes but hadn’t given consideration to this scenario. I imagine there will be a period where it’s a mess and everyone hates it, but it will eventually have to get sorted out. Especially if FB starts seeing pages get abandoned. It’s in their best interest to keep everyone using FB as a primary social media marketing tool.

 
 

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