UPDATE: New Facebook page designs cause a great deal of anxiety for business page owners as we get used to the new look and functionality of our pages. I wrote this update for people during the 2012 redesign. Stay tuned because a new design is rolling out in September 2015.
By now everyone is going through the 5 stages of grief over the loss of default landing tabs as the fact that all Facebook fan pages will convert to the new Facebook Timeline for Pages Design on March 30, 2012 sinks in.
Questions about the content housed on the millions of custom tabs created by businesses and entrepreneurs such as contests, opt-in offers, streaming video channels and e-commerce pages have people scrambling and questioning whether or not Facebook fans pages will be a worthwhile investment for small to mid-sized businesses and entrepreneurs, in both time and money.
All of your custom tabs still exist. You just need to think creatively about how to market them.
As of this writing, all of the content on custom tabs is still live and accessible. The only change has been that you cannot set up a default landing tab for non-fans. So how does a page entice fans to search for and click on a tab now that they are no longer displayed on the left hand side of a page?
Page admins can upload a custom image to represent the tab or app as Facebook is now referring to all tabs. Imagine seeing a series of evocative, engaging images in this 180 x 180 pixel format under the cover photo. Color, words, and images will call out to the reader like carnival barkers. “Come see the amazing offer.”
Page admins can also rearrange the order in which the apps appear. Four apps are “above the fold” and the rest live under the drop down arrow on the right hand side. Three of those app spots are available to admins to highlight the apps of their choice. Photos will always display. So admins can change the view to highlight specials, sales, contests or whichever three apps are most important to a page in any given time period.
I created two simple word images just to illustrate what’s possible. It was easy to upload the new app cover images and I expect to see brands and entrepreneurs doing some very creative work with these images. If you have examples of fun, enticing or downright awesome images fan pages are using to highlight their custom tab offerings, please post their URL below. Let’s amass some examples to inspire one another.