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How to ‘Like-Gate’ with Facebook Timeline

facebook-timeline-for-pages-optimized-header

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Search Influence

 

Facebook Timeline is nearly here for all pages, and one thing commonly mentioned is that the new design will be the death of like-gating.

Not necessarily.

(I’ll admit it: I’m not a huge fan of like-gating. This post is how pages could do so in Facebook Timeline; not that they should do so.)

App icons

With Facebook not allowing promotional content on the cover photo, pages still have an opportunity to like-gate through apps and their icons.

By creating an icon for an app that encourages page visitors to convert to page likers (perhaps like the “Buy tickets” above), pages will continue to see a steady stream of likers.

Fans-only content

Most sites that allow you to build Facebook tabs give you the option to let only people who like page see the content. That’s an easy way to keep like-gating alive, and it coincides nicely with my first point about app icons.

There is a caveat, of course. The content must be great, and the page must inform page visitors what the content is, otherwise a conversion to a page liker will not happen.

That is a tougher prospect with limited to just one app icon and the text beneath it.

Pinned status update

The visual opportunities of Timeline are plenty, and one way to take advantage of them is through a pinned status update. The pin will stay pinned for one week, giving page moderators a great chance to explain to visitors why they should convert to a page like.

Best of all, it stays at the top of the page, just below the cover photo, giving a great chance that visitors will see the content.

Milestone

Another way to take advantage of the visual elements of Timeline is through the milestones.

These elements take up both columns in Timeline, giving a focus point for visitors.

A couple of downsides: Visitors likely will need to scroll to come across the content, and it might be difficult to create a milestone that somehow integrate with encouraging visitors to like the page.

Status update shares

A remote possibility for conversions is to write a status update and ask people who like the page to share the update with their friends, encouraging those friends to like the page.

It’s remote, though, as a page will likely not see conversions through this method.

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  1. June 21, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    Thanks for the info on the new timeline and like-gating. I noticed you wrote that we can’t promote on the cover photo of our fanpage. If I wanted to make my fanpage banner photo have text and say something like: “Click like to receive a free internet marketing guide” With an arrow pointing to the like button. Would that be OK?

  2. June 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    Rusty, that wouldn’t be advisable as the cover image will be promoting your page instead of representing it.

  3. July 1, 2012 at 10:29 am

    Thanks Okaka for responding. Rusty, you can learn more about Facebook pages and policies here: http://www.facebook.com/help/pages/policies

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