Facebook is going to look a little different for Brand Pages come Friday, March 30. This is the day the Facebook Timeline will be enabled for all Brand Pages across the social network. But how do you prepare your Page for the transition? Here’s everything you need to know:

Timeline Cover Photo

Aside from a change in the general layout of your Page, the most noticeable change is the addition of the cover photo. This is the banner image at the top of your Timeline and can be used to your advantage. The first thing you want to do is decide how you are going to utilize it. Will you be using it to promote specials and events or keep it a consistent image? Either one is fine, but it’s important to know that this will be the first thing users and fans see when they come to your Timeline. You want to have something that will captivate your audience and keep them on your Page.

Mashable has a great list of five tools that can help you create an eye-catching image.

Company Milestones

Another great feature of Timeline is the ability to go back in time and add milestones to your Page. These milestones could include your company’s founding date as well as when you introduced new products, services, etc. This is a great opportunity to tell the story of your company, especially if you’ve been around for a while. By adding milestones, you are turning your Timeline into an interactive infographic your fans can engage with. You can also “Highlight” certain milestones to draw more attention to them and make them more visible. We suggest making a list of your company’s most important events and adding them to your Timeline.

Facebook Tabs

Remember how awesome Facebook Tabs were when they were first introduced? Well, they just got a lot cooler. Now the tabs have moved from the left side of the Page to just below your cover photo. Instead of having text links, you can add thumbnails to draw more attention to your Tabs. The layout has also changed slightly. Now they’re wider, so it’s important to edit any existing tabs you may already have to accommodate the size change. And now that these (like everything else with Facebook Timeline) are more visual, you should make sure your most important Tabs are the ones featured below your cover photo. If your company has a blog, we suggest creating a Tab that will pull in the RSS feed of your blog. One of the goals of Timeline is to make it a secondary (if not primary) location for your fans to come to, and the addition of important Tabs can really turn your Page into a resource.

Spring Cleaning

It’s that time of year. Many people are sorting through their old clothes, books, etc. You should do the same with your Timeline. Before your Timeline goes live, you have the opportunity to sort through your old posts and remove ones you don’t find pertinent to your Timeline. It also gives you the chance to update your Page’s information. This includes your general About section as well as your photos and videos.

Don’t Worry

While this change may look drastic, it’s not going to change the overall functionality or purpose of your Facebook Page. You may have to reevaluate your social strategy as it pertains to Facebook, but not dramatically. We suggest making your Facebook Timeline more visual by highlighting important milestones and posts. This will show your fans what things on your profile you think are most important to them instead of them having to figure it out for themselves.

If you have questions about how to best optimize your Facebook Timeline, leave us a comment below and we’ll be happy to help!

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