Interaction with your fans on Facebook is key to being successful but if only 16% of your fans are seeing your updates how do you achieve high interaction levels?
Facebook recently launched Timeline and, as part of this, there is a whole new breed of applications called Timeline Applications. You can now develop Timeline apps that will increase these interaction levels and ensure more of your fans are talking about you and your brand.
What is a Timeline?
A timeline is a collection of stories (photos, posts, videos, events) about you or your brand mostly displayed in chronological order on your user profile or your business page (if you pin a post you can keep it at the top of your timeline for up to 7 days). It was recently rolled out to all users and business pages and, despite some complaints, it’s unlikely that it’s going away!
What is a Timeline app?
Timeline apps are Facebook’s next generation of Facebook Open graph and they allow you to share information in real time with your friends about what you are doing. Open Graph is about Facebook opening up to interaction occurring outside of Facebook.com. In the first version of Open graph you could say you ‘Like’ something and this gets shared out on your Timeline. This has now been expanded to a whole new set of actions for example – Listened, Cooked, Read and Watched. You can even apply to Facebook for your own actions that suit your business.
Example of a Timeline app
Foodily is a recipe site that provides thousands of food recipes. They have a Timeline app which shares information while you are browsing through recipes. For example, if I install the app on my Timeline and browse through recipes on their website, this will get shared on my Timeline. This means my friends gets to see what recipes I’ve shown an interest in.
So I was browsing through foodily.com and looked at the lamb ragu as I like the odd bit of lamb from time to time:
Because I had the Foodily Timeline app installed and gave it permission to share details of my interactions on foodily.com this was shared out on my Timeline. Sharing without me having to initiate the sharing is called ‘frictionless sharing’.
How can you take advantage of this?
Imagine creating your own Timeline application with some useful functionality that is associated with your brand that users really want to use and share. So now you’re getting your fans to share out content relevant to your brand to their friends on Facebook.
Facebook Applications such as competition applications are still important and useful but timeline apps are certainly worth taking a look at as well. For example, If you have a restaurant you could provide videos of your Chef cooking the latest dishes and then every time someone watches a video it gets shared out to their friends on Facebook automatically, and hopefully create a viral effect. What type of timeline app could you use to promote your brand/or service?