Facebook re-launched its advertising platform at the company’s first-ever Facebook Marketing Conference in New York yesterday, placing Facebook Pages at the heart of all future paid, owned and earned strategies.


Last year Facebook announced introduced the timeline to personal user profiles, this will now be the same for all brand pages. At the end of March, all brand Pages will get Timeline, just like personal Pages, featuring a large cover photo of the brand’s choice – although this must fall within Facebook’s guidelines, which basically prevent the cover photo from being an ‘advert’.

Beware Facebook have laid out strict guidelines to what can be used for your cover, they may not contain:

  • Price or purchase information, such as “40% off” or “Download it at our website”
  • Contact information, such as web address, email, mailing address or other information intended for your Page’s About section
  • References to user interface elements, such as Like or Share, or any other Facebook site features
  • Calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends”
manchester united facebook timeline

New timeline on the Manchester United Facebook brand page

Reach Generator

At the same time, a brand new product called “Reach Generator” gives brands the option to pay Facebook for guaranteed News Feed distribution to up to 75% of all their fans. Reach Generator will double the average reach of posts, and engagement should more than double as more fans will engage, and expose the Posts to their friends, who may well also engage. This should reduce the number of complains from marketers concerning the lack of reach of most Facebook posts.

Premium ads

Premium ads were also launched, whereby the content a business posts on its Page is the same content as is used for the ad unit. This move is based on the fact that Facebok says ads are more effective when they start from Page posts.

“The new ad formats will provide brands with an even more compelling way of marrying up a brand’s Facebook ad executions with their content.  The freedom to create interactive ads, much like the activity that currently takes place on a brand’s page, brings premium ads in line with the development of marketplace ads over the last 12 months.” comments Will Ashton, MD of Alchemy.

All adverts in Facebook will now begin as content posted to a page, so there will be no need to create separate Facebook ad copy. The content brands publish to Facebook and the data associated with it is the front end of the ad system. Users will be able to ‘Like’ and engage with the content anywhere – whether on the Page post itself, or in the adverts. Ads will be split into two main categories. Premium ads will appear in four places –  News Feed, right-hand side, mobile News Feed and on the logout page –  and for the time being will be bought directly from Facebook.

The ads will also be featured on the News Feed of its mobile applications, despite potential consumer backlash.