Archive for March, 2012

Blog » Archive for March, 2012

New Facebook Layout for Business Pages

Facebook recently announced that as of March 30, 2012, all Facebook business pages would be switching over to a new Facebook layout. Unfortunately, the new layout change is mandatory, which means we don’t really have a choice in the matter, however, the good news is that the functionality on your page will not change and neither will your customized Facebook tabs (if you have them).

This new change might come as a shock to some of you and others may be excited, either way we have a few tips and explanations to help you make the transition go smoothly.

New Look

First, it is important for you to understand what your new page will look like. The new layout looks similar to the personal profile layout called Timeline.

Instead of having a 200 x 600 pixel logo to the left of your page, you will now have what they are calling a “Cover Photo” that is 851 x 315 pixels wide. This new cover photo offers endless opportunities for your new page. For example, rather than only being able to promote one message like before, the new banner size will allow you to focus on multiple things. How exciting!

Although you now have a cover photo, your profile image still remains. Just as before, your profile image will appear next to any posts you make on your wall, or anyone else’s wall. We recommend using your company logo for this, as it can only be 180 x 180 pixels.

The second biggest change to the look of your new profile is your apps (or customized tabs). Instead of being located to the left of the page under your profile picture, you will now notice your apps, which include your photos have been conveniently relocated to the top right of the page underneath your huge cover photo image. This should make it easier for your customers and fans to locate your customized tabs.

And finally, you will notice your wall feed has also been moved much further down the page to the left. And to the right of your feed, you can now prominently see what customers are interacting with your page.

In addition, you will also notice that Facebook has redesigned your Facebook posts so that they are larger, and any images, or videos posted are also larger. This will hopefully drive additional engagement on your page.

Functionality

The nice thing about this new layout change is that most of your functionality will stay the same. However, there are a few additions to functionality that I would like to point out.

Facebook added something called a “Pinned Post.” A pinned post will allow you to mark a particular post and have it stay at the top of your page for a week. This is ideal for a trending post that you are receiving a lot of comments on. Hopefully having it pinned to the top of your page will help it to gain momentum.

You will also be able to star posts to highlight them, or hide posts that that aren’t as engaging or relevant with the pencil icon to the top right of each post. All I have to say is finally! This is a great feature that we are very excited about.

This announcement is new and we must admit we are still working with each of our clients to help them make a smooth transition.  We know that just as we feel we have figured everything out about the new layout, something will likely change and we will have to start the creative process all over again. But for now, here is what we know about Facebook’s new layout for business pages. We will keep you updated if anything new arises.

In the mean time, we would love to hear from you. Have you made the switch yet? Did the transition go smoothly? Please let us know if there is anything we can do to help you and your business make the switch.

-Hannah Halstrom, Project Manager/Copywriter

Modern Web Browsers, an Introduction

After posting my latest article in February about IE6 overstaying its welcome I was met with feedback from colleagues, as well as some personal realizations… Many people these days are unaware of the benefits and features of modern browsers and the fact that other options even exist beyond what came bundled with their computer.  My goal over the coming weeks is to briefly touch on those topics in hope of enlightening the average internet user to the great alternatives available.

First things first:

What is a web browser?

A web browser, in its simplest form, is a computer program which takes text files from a virtual destination and converts the data into something functional and (hopefully) aesthetically pleasing.  The page you’re looking at now, for example, is nothing more than a bunch of textual code which has been conveniently made legible and visually attractive courtesy of your web browser.

Without getting too technical, think of your TV set, for example.  Those little waves and signals traveling through the air and through cables to your home are virtually useless until you connect them to your TV or a device that can then translate the signal into a useable picture.  Essentially a web browser acts the same, in the sense that it’s a portal to access otherwise unusable data.

What web browsers are available?

Believe it or not, the pool of browsers for you to choose from is surprisingly large.  There are, however, merely a handful that dominate the market – Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Opera, and Internet Explorer (IE).

Firefox is produced by Mozilla, a non-profit organization with a goal of bettering the internet.  Chrome is a product of the web giant Google, Safari a product of Apple (another tech giant).  Opera is somewhat a Norwegian-based equivalent of Firefox, with Internet Explorer being the long-running product of Microsoft.

I’m interested in trying something new.  How much can I expect to pay for these other options?

Nothing.  A key point of browsers is that they are free.

Introductions aside, I’ll be reviewing each of these browsers in more depth later in this educational series, as well as covering a few of the key benefits of modern browsers that you may not be aware of.  Stay tuned!

Spring Cleaning For Your Computer

When you think of spring cleaning, the things that come to mind the most are your house, car and office, but people don’t really think about spring cleaning their computer. This is actually very important, just like cleaning your house, your computer also needs regular maintenance to help it last longer.

Here are some important things to keep in mind when cleaning your computer:

First, start with cleaning the hardware: monitor, keyboard and tower.

Monitor: For your monitor, put together a mixture of half distilled water and half vinegar. Moisten a soft cloth until just damp and softly wash in circular motions.

Keyboard: For your keyboard, use canned air to spray all the dust and debris off the keyboard. Unplug the keyboard and gently wipe the keys down with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol. Next use a couple cotton swabs and get in between the keys; repeat the same steps with the mouse.You would not believe what kind of germs are on these items, yuck!

Tower: The tower is especially important because all the dust inside acts almost like insulation, and the heat can cause damage to your hard drive. Remove the side panel from the tower and again use the canned air to remove the dust. Make sure all the connections are tight and re-attach the panel.

Laptop: For your laptop, just clean it the same way you did the monitor and keyboard described above.

Software: Now when cleaning the software, make sure you backup your computer first. Remove spy ware (our IT company uses Microsoft Security Essentials – it is free and does an excellent job at protecting your computer). Use the disk cleaner, removing temporary files. Emptying the recycle bin helps you get rid of programs you don’t use. This will free up a lot space on your computer. Run a disk defragmenter at least once a week and whenever you install new programs.

In addition to the things mentioned above, every month, look at your desktop and remove anything you don’t use. Your computer will function faster when it isn’t cluttered. All these things will help your computer run faster and last longer.

Make spring cleaning your computer a regular ritual and you will be happy and organized, and your computer will be too.

-Lori Davis, Office Manager and Accounting

Tips to Reduce Stress in the Workplace

I have found recently that I have had a little stress at work and home, okay maybe a lot of stress! These days with the hectic workaholic society that we have created in America it is almost an epidemic. In searching for stress relievers I have come across a few things that I have tried out, and I think may benefit others and make my office as stress free as possible.

  • Slowly take a deep breath and exhale completely. Repeat 4-5 times, you will be much more relaxed.
  • Music! My mood dictates the music I listen to. If I need to get really motivated for a project, I choose something upbeat. If I am stressed, I pick something a little mellow to relax.
  • Take a small break, walk around your office complex, stretch at your desk, go get a cup of coffee, anything to get you away from your desk for a moment. You will come back relaxed and ready to work.
  • Do chair Yoga; it refreshes the body and mind.
  • Laugh, it is true that laughter is the best medicine.

Hopefully, these tips will help you and make your day a little less stressful. If those don’t work, I am sharing a funny clip from The Office that is sure to make you laugh. Enjoy!

-Lori Davis, Office Manager and Accounting