“Tyranny of the wall” might imply to a person of a certain age the Berlin Wall. Today I’m talking about the wall–as in a Facebook wall.
If you manage a company or organization’s Facebook page, you’ll know what I’m talking about. If you don’t manage a Facebook page yet, you might soon. According to eConsultancy, “With more than 500m registered users and counting, Facebook is to brands today what the internet was to brands in the 1990s when the consumer internet was in its infancy.”
Facebook pages, particularly the walls, are all about what’s new and happening, just as daily newspapers have always sought to be. I’ve long admired the clever name Tina Brown picked for her witty website–the Daily Beast. When she launched the site, the Financial Times noted that it was “named after a fictional Fleet Street newspaper in Evelyn Waugh’s Scoop.”
Anyone who’s worked at a newspaper understands the analogy of feeding the beast. A Facebook wall is almost as demanding as a daily newspaper in its insatiable desire for new material. Post something interesting and it’s great for a day or two or three. Before you know it, it’s starting to look dated. Post something else and you’ve bought yourself another few days.
Meanwhile, your great links from last week have scrolled further down the page. Someone new to your page could easily overlook those links. At least with your own blog or website you can tinker with where to put the best or juiciest links. While there are other Facebook tabs or pages where you can put video, a Twitter feed or other content, the wall is still a challenge.
How to survive the tyranny of the Facebook wall? Six tips:
1) Cultivate community – it’s not just a nice idea to have the community converse and share their stories. It’s a life saver (to exaggerate only slightly). Aim to inspire conversation and have people share their opinions. It’s a great use of Facebook as many people go there to talk with others.
2) Name drop with style – When you post to your wall, “tag” or link the names of people or organizations you’re writing about, suggests social media strategist JD Lasica (Facebook popups should help you fill in the names. Type in @ to get started).
3) Go for impact. Post great photos or videos.
4) Make peace with the idea that the wall is for info of the moment (or week). Consider having at least two admins to share the fun.
5) Be friendly. Post on other’s peoples and other organization’s walls. With luck, they’ll come visit yours.
6) Hide the wall. Build a custom fan page or welcome page for people to land at first. Some brands use these pages to offer a promo or seek attention. (See a related Mashable article on how to do just that.)
Got any other great ideas?