Facebook Cover Photos: Brought to you by the Philadelphia Phillies

When Facebook timeline was announced for brands earlier this year, bloggers and social media web sites correctly pointed out that the switch would enable brands to push content to fans in a more aesthetically pleasing and interactive way. And indeed, since the switch was made on February 29th, we’ve seen a large number of brands lead the way with innovative and creative timeline pages and cover photos, one of the most noticeable differences between timeline and the old profile page layout. Redbull, Starbucks, Coca-Cola and Manchester United were among the first to take advantage of the change in layout. Yet one thing organizations haven’t done is release branded cover photos that fans can upload to their personal Facebook profile page. That is, until now.

Major League Baseball isn’t typically considered to be one of the more groundbreaking organizations when it comes to social media. That being said, the Philadelphia Phillies have recently released what I believe to be the first instance of an organizational branded cover photo specifically meant for a fan’s Facebook profile. The Phillies announced the available photos via Twitter and Facebook, and are marketing the images by telling fans, “The Phillies have you covered.” The collection of images include a panoramic picture of their home stadium as well as images of current star players.

The move is a clever one. By releasing branded cover photos, the Phillies can transform fans into brand ambassadors by having them publish the image as their Facebook cover photo. Rarely does a team, or any brand for that matter, give fans a reason to go back to their actual Facebook page after they like the page. However, Facebook users are much more likely to go to a friend’s Facebook profile page. When they do, the cover photo will likely be the first thing that draws their attention, according to Mashable. The popular social media site discovered in late December 2011 via eye tracking software that Facebook users looking at Facebook timeline profiles looked at a user’s cover photo first, and additionally, that it only took a user .5 seconds to look at it. For brands, that means that their brand photo can be the first object a Facebook user looks at, even when they’re looking at a friend’s Facebook page rather than the brand’s page.

Roy Halladay's Facebook Cover Photo

The Phillies may be the first organization to release branded Facebook cover photos, but they assuredly will not be the last. For sports organizations, athletes are an incredible selling point, and cover photos lend themselves well to dramatic images of athletes in action.

What do you think of the idea? Do you think more brands will use this tactic in the future? Most importantly, would you make your cover photo a branded image from an organization, sports or otherwise, that you support?

Voice your opinion in the comments section below, and check out all of the Phillies branded cover photos here.

Leave a comment


  1. Just wait until somebody’s page gets hacked and we get a picture of Charliei Manuel in the shower.

  2. The Giants have done the same thing! Very cool! Great post.


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