Everywhere you look, businesses and bands are hitching their destinies to Facebook.
VEVO just latched its entire registration system to ‘the social network,’ and Spotify isn’t far behind. Investors are boosting startups like RootMusic that completely revolve around Facebook, while bands think Facebook likes are three times as important as email signups.
There’s an obvious reason for all of this. But there’s also an obvious downside: Facebook can – and will – change the rules on you overnight, often with little or no advance warning. These could be annoying alterations, excellent enhancements, or dramatic shifts that could utterly shock your business model. Which is exactly what happened on Wednesday, leaving everyone else scrambling to adapt.
This is all part of a major layout overhaul that revolves around Timeline, and the changes could have a dramatic impact on artists and Facebook-centric businesses.
The biggest of the changes seems to be this: as part of the shift, bands can no longer make their app page their default landing page (for example, RootMusic’s BandPage). Instead, all visitors will be sent to the Timeline-loaded front page, with apps relegated to a tab (though bands can direct-link). Which means far less control for artists, and a potentially monstrous setback for businesses like RootMusic (and to a lesser extent, FanBridge, ReverbNation, and others).
But wait! There are more game-changing shifts being splashed in your face, most likely with little-or-no advanced warning. That includes certain limitations on your gigantically-revamped, 815×320 masthead photo. For example, a band cannot incorporate any marketing language, special offers, Like buttons, or any calls-to-action into this showcase pic.
Actually, RootMusic has created a quick-and-comprehensive guide to the changes. It’s a great primer – and remember: transitions are mandatory by March 31st.