I admit it, I’m a Facebook addict. My teenage son will no longer let me take pictures of him because he expects me to share them with my Friends on my Facebook page. My mother calls less these days because I’ve trained her to find out what I’m doing by checking Facebook.
Even though I love Facebook, I have to admit that I’ve found the changes and additions a bit daunting sometimes. I’m still not crazy about Timeline, and with every post, it seems there’s something new to learn. But with 900 million users and one in five new Facebook users coming from mobile devices, I’d argue that you either need to get on the bandwagon, or be left behind.
So much to learn, so little time. For those who, like me, have a business to run, kids to run to hockey practice and the remote possibility of a date night with your sweetie, here are some tips, and links to sources that can save you time and help you manage Facebook like a pro.
If you are the Administrator of a Facebook Page (or multiple pages like me), the Facebook Pages App is a necessity. Get real-time notifications when someone posts to the Pages you monitor. It also makes it simple to add a post from your mobile phone.
Another App I love is Facebook Messenger. Media can message me via Facebook at any time of the day or night and know that they’ll get an immediate response-quicker than emailing me. A couple of months ago, Facebook announced it would be updating Messages with a new look, side-by-side layout and the ability to insert photos and emoticons into messages. Better search and navigation also has been promised. I haven’t seen the changes roll out yet, but rumor is it’s coming soon.
Did you wonder what I meant when I mentioned emoticons in that last sentence? That’s the name of those smiley faces and hearts that you may have seen popping up in comments, chats or messages on Facebook. Before you get too excited about adding a devil, shark, penguin or robot to your next post, know that you still can’t use them in your status update, and they don’t work via mobile apps – yet. Want to learn more? Check out this video on Mashable, then get the shortcut menu to start using them.
Wish you could go to Facebook once a day, or once a week and post all your updates at once? Wish granted with the new Facebook Scheduling. You may have been using a third party application like HootSuite to schedule your Facebook posts in the past. With the new Facebook Scheduling, I’d encourage you to start scheduling your posts directly-which will result in more views. Here’s how to do it: Start a post, then click the little gray clock on the bottom left corner of the posting box. Then enter the year, month, date and time you want your post to appear. You can then view the posts you’ve schedule by going to your Facebook Admin Panel, click Manage, then choose View Activity Log.
If you haven’t interacted with someone on Facebook for awhile, they probably don’t see your posts. With the new Promoted Posts feature, you can move to the top of their newsfeed by paying as little as $5 or $10. Here’s how to do it: Type an update and look for the word “promoted” along the bottom gray border of the update box. See how many people you will reach before you agree to pay. I haven’t experimented with this option much yet, but think it will be ideal for promoting events or to attract new Fans or Friends to a page.
Other things to spruce up your Facebook presence? I am lucky enough to have one of the savviest social media gurus in the country on my KD/PR Virtual Team, Aliza Sherman. I especially recommend her “Tech With Aliza” posts on “Facebook Page Look” that explains how to choose a cover and profile image, how to arrange app boxes, how to illustrate app boxes with ShortStack and ways to improve the “About” page. Aliza also has some great suggestions on things to add to your Facebook page like a button to subscribe to your MailChimp or Constant Contact email newsletter, how to add Twitter, Flickr, YouTube or Pinterest to your Facebook page and tips on adding contests to your Wall in “5 Ways You Can Add to Your Facebook Page Today.”
What tips do you have to make Facebook more manageable and fun?