Choosing a Cover Image for Facebook Timeline

If choosing a Cover Image makes you feel like this, don't fret! It's going to be OK!

As of March 30, 2012, all Facebook Pages will be converted to Timeline. And part of the new design includes a large cover image, 851 px by 315 px. Now if your image is larger or smaller than this, don’t fret. Facebook will automatically resize and crop if needed, and then allow you to adjust the part of the cropped photo that shows. Do keep in mind, however, that your cover image has to be at least 720 pixels wide.

But how do you choose a Cover Image?

For some, it’s a paralyzing experience. It feels like such a significant decision and folks aren’t sure what to do. But relax. While of course the cover image does have a reflection on your business, it’s also still true that the majority of interactions for your Page will still occur on the News Feed of Facebook, and not on the Page itself. And you can also change your Cover Photo at any time, so if you don’t get it right the first time you can still change it.

So what kind of Cover Photo should you choose? Here are some tips:

  • If you are a novice when it comes to photo editing software, choose a photo that represents your business. Your Cover Image doesn’t HAVE to be Photoshopped perfection. For example, I chose a photo for my Facebook Page that shows me speaking at a company’s National Conference. This photo shows that large companies hire me, that I am perceived as an expert, and that I am successful. Since this is what I want to portray, this photo represents my brand well. Your Cover Image could be a selection of your products, you speaking at a team meeting, a group shot of your team, or something similar.
  • If you have a little skill with a photo editing program, you might want to put together something that includes words and photos. While you still need to comply with Facebook guidelines for cover photos (no calls to action), you can include your name, your company name and your title, etc. You might include products as your background, with overlayed photos that show more of the business (like team photos, convention, incentive trips, etc.), and an inspirational saying. Then your profile image (the small square photo) can be a headshot of yourself.

Here are some cover photos I’ve seen of direct sellers that may give you some inspiration:

This Pampered Chef consultant includes a subtle recruiting message along with a food photo.

This Cover Image by a Shaklee leader highlights her team, which can be incredibly motivating for the team while also portraying the leader as a successful leader in the organization.

This Stella & Dot consultant included a photo of her jewelry display with the logo/company name included.

This Origami Owl consultant has done a bit of custom work but still kept it simple. She includes a lovely photo of the product she offers, as well as her logo. It’s complemented with her photo as the Profile Image (wearing her jewelry.) This is well done!

 

This Stampin’ Up demonstrator also used a photo of completed projects, as well as some of the products she sells. She added a photo of herself as the main Profile Image.

This consultant also included a montage of products, as well as a subtle message that is not a call to action. She also included her independent creative partner logo in the montage, and stayed true to the branding colors of the company.

The point is to keep it simple, make it easy on the eyes, and don’t make yourself crazy.

Templates

If you are a Photoshop user, John Haydon provides specific instructions and a link to a free template in this post.

And here is a link to a post that lists 19 different programs you can use to create a Timeline Cover Photo: http://ebiznet2u.com/19-best-facebook-timeline-profile-cover-creators-3714/

Have you created a Cover Image for your Facebook Page yet? What tips or advice do you have? Would love to read your thoughts in the comments below. Oh, and if you’ve already upgraded, feel free to share a link in the comments to your Facebook Page.

 

8 Responses to Choosing a Cover Image for Facebook Timeline
  1. Wumi Oyewole
    March 31, 2012 | 3:33 am

    Very useful tips as usual Jen.

    I’ve been very busy and not had time to catch up with all the changes with Facebook, but I knew that I would have to sort out a cover image for my facebook timeline. Now that I have seen some ideas from the examples shown, I know that it would be quite simple.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Wumi

  2. Tina "The Book Lady"
    March 31, 2012 | 1:56 am

    A very timely post! Thanks for the ideas. I have mine about 1/2 done but it is up! I sell children’s books and review books for authors around the world as well as US publishers on both of my blogs. I want to add a line of Text for Usborne w/ my website address & possibly my blog address – I’d love to be able to have a link directly to my blogs from the facebook cover if that’s possible. Any idea? Would that be too much?

    Tina’s Reading Room:
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tinas-Reading-Room/140861745928779

    I took a class on social media this Tuesday that was through Constant Contact and one of the things they suggested was that all of our social media should have the same name across the board – but how? I sell Usborne and have 2 blogs (that are not only about Usborne). And I’ve been in business for 3 years – everyone knows me as family literacy.

    Hmmmm

    Tina ‘the book lady’
    http://familyliteracy2.blogspot.com
    MyUsborneBooks.com
    Tina “The Book Lady” recently posted..Welcome to Family LIteracy!

  3. Nicole
    March 29, 2012 | 5:09 pm

    great examples. I’ve been putting off Timeline and waiting to see if they really switch over pages tomorrow.

  4. Shawna
    March 29, 2012 | 4:47 pm

    I love using our company’s digital scrapbooking software to create the timeline cover!! I already have my April one ready to go. http://www.facebook.com/shawnabart

  5. Barb Maurais
    March 29, 2012 | 4:42 pm

    Thanks for the tips on creating a cover photo, Jen. Love the examples. Here is the cover photo that I have on my page~I had made a fruit salsa to go~everything in it and ready to be pulsed and the chili lime rub actually had the label showing.
    https://www.facebook.com/pcbarbmaurais

  6. Jhanna Dawson
    March 29, 2012 | 11:30 am

    Great content, Jennifer, thank you! I’ve been so swamped with business, that I haven’t even touch the large picture for the page timeline, but this posts shows me how important it is to utilize that HUGE space to my benefit!

    Thank you again!

    Jhanna
    Jhanna Dawson recently posted..This One Secret Will Bring You Massive Success in Life.

  7. Jhanna Dawson
    March 29, 2012 | 11:29 am

    Awesome content, Jennifer!

  8. erin, maker of chimes
    March 29, 2012 | 11:17 am

    I made the one for cover that you included in your post above for Tracy Bass :)

    I’m making them for free! If anyone else is interested in having one made, they can contact me via: https://www.facebook.com/DinnerTimeChimes
    erin, maker of chimes recently posted..Spoon Handle Keychain – FREE Shipping in US by DinnerTimeChimes

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