Facebook Cover Photo Ideas For Business and Marketing

The relaxing of Facebook's cover photo rules a couple of months ago means that marketers now have a lot more freedom in the type of stuff they can add to the design of them - calls to action, contact details, asking people to like your Page, etc.... as long as the total amount of text does not make up more than 20% of the image.

The Facebook cover photo is a hugely powerful piece of prime real state for your Page, and people love  to get free stuff - so I have combined the two in my newest one, as you can see above, asking viewers to click to receive a free copy of my e-book, How to Measure Social Media ROI. 

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Of course, clicking on a Facebook cover image only enlarges the photo and does not load a new web page, but the action does  make the photo's description visible, and it's here that I have added the actual newsletter sign-up URL.

I hope this has given you some inspiration for your own Facebook Page cover photo! 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Andrew Macarthy is the author of the #1 Amazon Bestseller, 500 Social Media Marketing Tips.

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Facebook Cover Photo 20% Text Rule FULLY Explained | May 2013

 
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Back in December 2012 and again in March 2013, Facebook changed and relaxed its rules on cover photos respectively. The newest rules read:

"Covers can't be deceptive, misleading, or infringe on anyone else's copyright. You may not encourage people to upload your cover to their personal timelines. Covers may not include images with more than 20% text."

This means that since March you have been able to include text like a call to action, contact details, and pricing and purchasing information about a product in your cover image - something that was not permitted before. The 20% rule also applies to ads, Offers, and sponsored stories that appear in the News Feed.

Despite the details given by Facebook, there is still a lot of confusion about exactly what kind of text the 20% rule applies to. Now, Facebook has quietly revised its guidelines again to make things much clearer. Here is a summary:

The Facebook 20% Text Rule Fully Explained

  • The 20% text policy does NOT apply to pictures of products that include text on the actual product. 
  • Photos of products in real situations or photos of products with a background ARE allowed. 
  • Images that are zoomed in on logos or images with text overlay are NOT allowed.
  • Images that are clearly edited to include text on the product as a loophole to the 20% text rule are NOT allowed.

Note: The 20% text rule limit only applies to cover photos and ads and sponsored stories that appear in the News Feed. Unpromoted photos you post to your Page's Timeline can feature as much text as you like.

Let's look at some examples... 

Example 1 - Adheres to 20% Text Guidelines

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Taking my current cover photo as an example and measuring the amount of text it contains with the Facebook Cover Photo Compliance Tool at http://coverphoto.paavo.ch, you can see that it currently contains about 16% text (or closer 20% if I was accurately able to highlight the area of text below my photo). While there is a lot of text on my book cover, the image complies with Facebook's guidelines because the 20% text policy does not apply to pictures of products that include text on the actual product.

Example 2 - Breaches 20% Text Guidelines

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While the online compliance tool only measures 5% blocks, it is clear that this cover photo is made up of more than 20% text. And as the text is not part of an actual product , it breaches Facebook's rules and would risk being removed without warning.

Further Examples (Promoted Post, Event Photos)

Here are some more examples - provided by Facebook itself - to help clarify its 20% text rule, this time focused on Promoted Posts and Event Images.  

Complies to 20% Text Rule

4% Text - Complies to Guidelines.

4% Text - Complies to Guidelines.

12% Text - Complies to Guidelines.

12% Text - Complies to Guidelines.

Breaches 20% Text Rule

60% Text - Breaches Guidelines.

60% Text - Breaches Guidelines.

40% Text - Breaches Guidelines.

40% Text - Breaches Guidelines.

Conclusion

Chances are that Facebook will revise its cover photo (and promotional image) guidelines again in the future, but I hope this summary has given you a much clearer understanding about where you stand with the current rules, and help prevent any of your images being removed or rejected. How does your current cover photo fare? Let me know in the comments below!  


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Andrew Macarthy is the author of the #1 Amazon Bestseller, 500 Social Media Marketing Tips.

Buy 500 Social Media Marketing Tips (Kindle or Paperback)
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007L50HE6
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B007L50HE6

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Facebook Page Cover Photo Rules March 2013 - Update

 
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Facebook has updated its guidelines for Pages' cover photos, removing rules against including calls to action, contact info, or references to price or purchase information. However, the proportion of your cover photo made up of text should still not exceed 20%. The new rules read:

All covers are public. This means that anyone who visits your Page will be able to see your cover. Covers can’t be deceptive, misleading, or infringe on anyone else’s copyright. You may not encourage people to upload your cover to their personal timelines. Covers may not include images with more than 20% text.
— https://www.facebook.com/page_guidelines.php

The new rules were rolled out on March 6 but were only spotted by marketers recently. So, if you're planning to update your Page's cover photo soon, perhaps you will want to re-consider your design to take advantage of the revised guidelines - I know I will!


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Andrew Macarthy is the author of the #1 Amazon Kindle Bestseller, 500 Social Media Marketing Tips. 

Buy 500 Social Media Marketing Tips
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007L50HE6
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B007L50HE6

Follow Me:
http://www.facebook.com/500socialmediatips/
https://pinterest.com/500socialmedia/
http://www.twitter.com/500socialmedia/
http://www.youtube.com/500socialmediatips