Some people love to get birthday messages on Facebook.
Heck, the first year I was on I couldn’t figure out why no one wished me a happy birthday when my turn came. I realized I had the setting turned off (knowing a lot about reputation management can have its drawbacks).
And some people don’t.
If you’d like to keep your big day to yourself, here’s how to make sure all 900 of your friends aren’t notified, prompted to write on your wall, or purchase a Facebook Gift.
- Navigate to your profile
- Click Update Info (as of May 2013). It may get changed, so look for any kind of “Edit”.
- Click Edit next to Basic Information
- Click on the audience button next to your birthday
- Choose Only Me
There’s one more drop down that allows you to choose whether it can be seen on your profile at all. The options are: show my full birthday on my timeline, show only month and day on my timeline, and don’t show my birthday on my timeline.
Not showing your birthday to the entire world is a good preventative measure to take against identity theft (dang! I’ve shown you mine). Now that we can piece together more and more about each other based on the sheer volume available about us online, be safe where you can.
First go to their Page, click on the gear under the cover photo, and select Like as Your Page (the Like button is for you as a person). Then go back to your Page, start writing your post, type the @ symbol and the Page name, and it should appear as a link.
This creates a direct link between your Page and their Page. It’s cross promotion and creates goodwill. They will also appear in the box called Likes on your Page. This Like box shows businesses you recommend and want others to know about. If you want to tag the Page but don’t want them to stay in that coveted real estate, you can like them for the post then unlike them and they will not be featured in your Like box.
Do you have a Facebook likebox plugin stream on your website that shows a miniature of your Facebook Page? Have you ever seen one that was blank? I had never seen it happen until I got a phone call from a client when it happened to him. I figured out one reason for it in case you have this problem
My client is a politician running for local office and he noticed on his website that the social plugin code that I had provided to the web designer wasn’t working anymore. The box that showed a small (and fully interactive) version of his Facebook Page was empty of information. I went from browser to browser to see how it represented differently but everything looked okay to me. I couldn’t figure it out UNTIL I logged out of Facebook. When you are logged out, these plugins empty out and have a “Sign Up” call to action.
I went through many testing scenarios and when I took a look at the Manage Permissions section of the back end of his Facebook Page, I discovered the setting that makes this happen. It doesn’t seem that this would be the culprit but if you change anything in the country setting, this is the result. My client had changed the settings that I’d entered for the page and put in United States and it effected the rendering of the code. Leave it empty and this won’t happen.
We knew that Facebook was going to introduce Timeline for Pages today but they jumped the gun and debuted it late last night. I turned mine on early this morning and have been tinkering with it all day. You have the ability to preview it and work with it up until March 30, 2012 when it’ll go live for all Pages. Here is a synopsis for you.
What you need to know:
- Default landing tabs are gone (if you still use FBML, it will disappear completely in June 2012)
- There is a Message feature so fans (and non fans) can privately communicate with Page admins
- The custom apps or tabs are now 760px wide (and you can change their images)
- The Timeline will go into effect for all pages March 30
- You can pin an important post to the top for a maximum of 7 days
- You can highlight posts to make them bigger.
- You can add Milestones as well (you can change the date of the post so that it fits in chronologically)
- This is the visual story of your business or organization
Your cover photo may be up to 850px by 315px, but may not include:
- Calls to action such as “Go to our website” or “Like this page”
- No reference to Facebook features such as Like, Share, Comment, etc.
- Contact info for the business (this should be in About)
- Price information
Are you turning yours on now or waiting?
Last week Facebook changed what seems like everything under the sun. Then they had their annual conference, f8, and released more new features. I wanted to give you an update as to the new features and what they mean to you.
- Top Stories & Most Recent News Combined. Facebook said, “When you visit Facebook, you should see the things you’re most interested in…”. If you haven’t visited Facebook for a while, the first things you’ll see are top photos and status updates posted while you’ve been away. They’re marked with an easy-to-spot blue corner. You can make adjustments to what is important to you, or not by touching the corner and giving them filtering help.
- Ticker. This is News Feed lite and it’s in the upper right hand corner of your screen. It’s designed so that you can see what’s occurring *now* in your network without having to leave your current location. This contains less important items as well as duplication to your main feed. It’s going to take us all some time to get used to it, I know.
- Subscribe Button. This is an optional feature. Subscribers see public information. Friends see your more private posts. If you are already friends with someone, you will see their subscribe button and it will show you are already subscribed because you are friends. Why would you want this? A well known organization like The Press Democrat has a Page, which is public. But Bruce Kyse, the publisher, has a personal Profile. He may want to turn on the subscribe feature so that people can find out a more personal view of what’s happening at their local paper rather than just the headlines that appear in print and on the FB Page. Bruce can keep his friends close but subscribers can also be a part of his world. This is a nice halfway spot between personal Profiles and public Pages. Remember, you can only have 5000 friends so Bruce might really want that new feature.**You can also filter the information you receive from your friends via this subscribe button. So those that spend too much time playing games, you can filter that out! Sweet.
- Timeline. This is the new Profile. It’s a literal timeline of your information. It will take some adjusting for you to get used to but don’t think you have long. As of Oct. 1, you will be forced to adopt the new format. Ready? Here’s how to get the new timeline in 5 minutes. I waited 6 days to convert my own because I prefer to not adopt a new form of technology at the very beginning. I know that the bleeding edge finds many of the problems and bugs and shields me from much of that pain. So I took screenshots as I converted my profile. See My Facebook Profile Conversion to New Timeline Format photo album. I actually like the Timeline much better than the new News Feed. If you are a business owner with a Page, expect that the Timeline will be coming to your Page soon. How to make sure your content is still visible? Post every other day, keep it real, and post interesting content. Think like your audience and post good stuff. You’ll be okay.
- Friend Lists. This really isn’t a huge change. If you didn’t use lists before, you probably won’t now but the difference is Facebook auto sorted them for you. Go in check out the lists, sort and rename if you choose. It allows for a more focused viewing of your network.
- Open Social Graph, Apps with Ticker integration. This has room for the overshare. There are several applications that will show your network what you are doing, listening, or reading. Look for Spotify for music, Hulu for TV and so on. They are calling this “verbing”. You can alter your settings with every application you use. Never fear. You actually have more control now than you did before.
- You can now claim your custom URL with less than 25 fans. The requirement was once 1000 fans, then 100, then 25, now it’s 1+. Why do you want this? See this blog I wrote What’s in a Facebook Name? and why you should go get one now.
- Status Updates. The limit was 500. Now it’s 5000! It’s now a mini-blog.
- Photo Tagging. There have been quite a few changes with tagging lately. Rather than go through them all (see Facebook’s Help Center on the matter), I wanted you to be aware of my favorite new feature. When you remove your name/tag from a photo, you have quite a few options including: Remove tag, Ask poster to take the photo down, and Block poster. It’s awesome.
- Cost. Facebook has committed to never charging for the service. This rumor pops up every six months or so. Facebook keeps assuring us it’s untrue.
- Unsubscribing from your friends comments and likes. What Facebook says, “Please note that unsubscribing from a friend’s ‘comments and likes’ in your News Feed, does not have any impact on whether your friends see it when you comment on or like their posts.”