On March 30, 2012, all Facebook Pages will get a new design. Here is a helpful video from the Social Networking Academy, and a list of what changes are coming your way.
Main Facebook Page Changes:
1). Cover Photo – Some interesting restrictions have been placed on what you can and can’t have on your cover photo;
Cover images must be at least 399 pixels wide and may not contain:
2). Your Profile Picture which will initially be the top part of your avatar, must be square and at least 180px wide
3). You Can No Longer LAND on a Custom Tab!!! Welcome pages and tabs still exist, but you can no longer default to land on any tabs. As with the timeline on your profile your photos and apps show in the central section in boxes, which means we can add a nice looking graphic to our Welcome pages and tabs to encourage people to click on them. Here’s what FB say about the central boxes;
Photos, likes and apps are now at the top of your Page. Photos show in the first spot, but you can change the order of everything else so people see what matters most. You can show a maximum number of 12 apps, so make sure to put your most important ones first.
I have to say I’m really disappointed that you can’t land on your custom landing tabs anymore, but somewhat relieved that we still have them!
4). You Can Pin Posts to the Top of Your Wall!The main design is the same as your profile page so as with that you can now add posts at different dates in the past, you can feature your post by clicking the star so it covers the width of your page, or you can hide it from your page altogether, but the really cool feature is being able to pin specific posts to the top, kind of like a ‘sticky’ post in forums.
5). There’s a brand new admin panel from which you can see your notifications, new likes, insights and the new private messages that people can now send you from your page! From your admin panel you will also see the Manage button which gives you access to the main editing section of your page (Basic Info, Manage Permissions, Apps and so on). Not much has changed in there apart from the Manage Permissions section which no longer has the default landing tab section! – Boo!
Also from the admin panel, you can access Facebook ads, a function to share your page and to invite friends, plus access to Facebooks help section.
6). New Message Feature! I mentioned above messages, well now your fans can message you directly! The messages will show within your admin panel and you can respond from there.
7). Tab Pages are now BIGGER! I believe the official size is 760px, I’ll keep you posted!
8). You will AUTOMATICALLY get the new design on March 30th. So jump in there and make the most of it, because it’s coming whether you like it or not!
The RSS Basics
If you are new to the terms RSS or news feeds then you are in the right place, read on and find out a little more about them and how they may offer you or your business a new way of communicating.
RSS Feeds or news feeds are growing quickly and have become a major part of the Internet but many users don't understand what they are. They allow people to see when their favourite websites have added new content without actually having to go to that website, this can be done through simple, often free pieces of software named RSS readers.
The term RSS is short for "Rich Site Summary" but many people now refer to it as "Really Simple Syndication". It was mainly used by news groups and sites to quickly share and broadcast their news with people. This proved to be a huge benefit as not only could they reach a huge audience quickly, they found that user's integrated feeds into their own website, this has been shown by the success of the BBC news feeds.
How to start using RSS feeds for your self?
In order for you to receive the latest news on topics of interest to you, firstly, you need a newsreader to be able to view the RSS feed. There are many to choose from, some Internet browsers such as Firefox (our favourite at Blueprint IT) have a built in RSS reader but there are many stand alone pieces of software which are also free that will enable you to receive the latest news. We will use Mozilla Firefox and Internet Explorer 7 as examples because they are very simple to use.
Once you have chosen your newsreader your ready to pick up news. Simply choose the websites with your favourite information on and if they have a news feed then all you have to do is subscribe to it (this is almost invariably free). You can subscribe to any RSS feeds by clicking on the orange RSS feed button symbol, this will allow you to receive all the news from that feed. Alternatively, some websites may not provide you with the RSS feed button but may provide you with a link, simply copy and paste this link into your news reader and you will be able to pick up the feed.
The RSS Feed will present you with a page full of news from the website that you chose. You have the option to subscribe to the RSS Feed, this will act like a bookmark that will let you visit the page at any time.
Alternatively, if you decided to use a standalone RSS Feed reader, you will automatically download the latest news through the software each time you open it.
There are many benefits to RSS Feeds to both business owners, customers and general internet users, it's just a quick and simple way to share or view news from your favourite sources with the minimum of effort.
By: Rob Jones
You already know about the great potential in social networking sites for marketing your business, but you may not have thought of using the YouTube digital marketing channel as a part of your social media marketing mix, especially if your business isn’t media-related. However, it is a top way to show off your products or services, while engaging your current customers and reaching potential ones.
The possibilities are endless on how you can create intriguing videos and here are a few ways of using YouTube to drive traffic to your website that you should use once you commit, the top three of which are described below.
Top Way #1 – Identify the Keywords that Need to be Included in the Video
YouTube is the worlds 2nd largest search engine. It has hundreds of millions a user a day and every day thousands of hours of video content are added. YouTube is 4th largest web property in the world and is on the path to become the source of advertising and publishing new content.
Use the most highly searched, relevant keywords in your video title and description. There are tools that you can use to help you discover the keywords that are relevant to your business.
You can change your video’s title and description at any time if you find that the video is no longer coming up high in searches or if you want to explore a new “keyword market.” The right keywords will get you ranked higher in both YouTube and search engine searches.
When thinking of a title for your video, you should consider descriptive, eye catching phrases that the user would think of inserting in the search field in a search Engine. Possibly adding dates, time, location or something more unique and specific can drive higher ranking to your video.
When you add a description to your video, try to use complete sentences, add details like place, location, dates and something the user can relate to. When adding tags to your video always be consistent, use descriptive keywords and avoid keyword stuffing.
YouTube highly recommends using there Insight tool which gives results of demographics and data that can give you a better hand on whats working and whats not. Insight will help generate reports that tell you where there traffic is arriving from, what keywords are being searched and provide data that will help you see which target audience is viewing your video.
Top Way #2 – Include a Transcript of the Video
The transcript makes it easier for search engine spiders to identify the topic of your video, so indexing is more accurate, and any keywords in the dialog of your video get included, too, which can translate to higher ranking. Transcripts should be saved in the .txt format and can be uploaded using the Edit Captions button on your video’s YouTube page.
Follow this link to find a few very useful tips on how to create free high quality captions and check out a screenshot of what the Captions screen looks like:
Top Way #3 – Include a Call to Action
Perhaps the most important tip is to include a "call to action" in your video. In other words, tell the viewer what you want them to do (visit your site), why they should do so (for example, to purchase the product you’ve just showcased), and give them the means to do it.
There are several ways to go about it. There is a call-to-action overlay that you can customize to take viewers directly to your site from within the video.
In addition, remember to include your domain name in the description – use the complete URL to create an automatic hyperlink. You can also add annotations to your video.
These small, pop-up boxes can be used for things like recommending other related videos of yours, reminding viewers to subscribe to your channel and to like and share the video.