[UPDATE #2: May 20, 2010: A few members of my community alerted me their Default Landing Tab had “reverted” back… or was working now.
So I conducted a test: I logged out of Facebook, then pulled up about a dozen fan pages with fewer than 10,000 fans that would normally land on a Welcome tab. Some did, some didn’t.
There doesn’t seem to be any pattern. I’m guessing Facebook are rolling out this new “Default Landing Tab Only for Authenticated Pages” rule in phases. Or, perhaps they’ve listened to us and are rolling back?!]
[UPDATE #1: As a workaround to this new inability to direct non-fans to your custom landing tab, you could make your own redirect link, e.g. http://marismith.com/fanpage goes to my fan page and could just as easily go to any tab. (You could also use any link shortener, e.g. bit.ly)
Remember, each tab still has its own unique URL and all your tabs/apps are still intact.
This approach with your own redirect link could work well for promotions outside Facebook.
However, any promotion inside Facebook (e.g. @ tags) would automatically go to whichever default landing tab you’ve set – either Wall or Info. I recommend Wall.
Once you reach 10,000 fans, you’ll be able to set your cutom landing tab. Though, so far, a couple members of my community have mentioned they cannot make the change and they’re over 10k fans. Sounds like the change is buggy.
Props to my fab friend, Mike Stelzner for the redirect link suggestion.]
Original post follows:
For some time, I’ve been raving about the benefits of having your non-fans land on a specific, custom landing tab on your Facebook Fan Page.
When you send visitors to your Facebook Fan Page, previously, you could have them land on a Welcome Tab, for instance – the purpose of which was to help visitors understand what your business is about and to compel them to want to join your Fan Page.
The option to set this was fairly easy – click on Options underneath the publisher on your Fan Page wall, then click on Settings and select the landing tab from the drop down menu:
However, in a rather odd move, today Facebook quietly let a few disgruntled developers know in the Facebook Developers Forum that they would no longer be offering the option to have a custom default landing tab. That is, unless you have a minimum of 10,000 fans or you have an account rep at Facebook.
New settings for fan pages with <10,000 fans:
Here’s the forum post:
As Nick O’Neill writes, “We’d assume that this change was made for two reasons: to combat spam and more importantly, to boost revenue…”
To clarify, ALL of your custom tabs still exist. And – this is important – each tab still has its own unique URL. So, theoretically, you could shorten the URL’s and split test landing tabs as I’ve talked about before.
If you don’t have an account rep, here’s the contact form per Facebook.
How do you feel about this change? Was the default landing tab for non-fans a big part of your Fan Page promotion strategy? Let me know in the comments below:
Props to my bud Dave Kerpen for the phone call today about the Developer Forum post, and to my Twitter bud Ryan Burns for drawing my attention to this change last night (at first we thought it was a bug!), and to my bud Nick O’Neill for promptly blogging about the issue.