Make the New Facebook Lists Work for You.Anita Kirkbride
Every workshop I go to people want to know how to choose who gets to see your updates on Facebook. Until fairly recently, you couldn’t really choose (not easily anyhow). With the introduction of Google+ and “circles” we see Facebook playing catch up and trying to fill the gaps their semi-loyal friends are looking for.
Last week Facebook made major updates to lists and sharing. Here’s what you need to do to make lists work for you.
Determine how to classify your Facebook Friends
How do you want to share info on Facebook? Do you want to share everything with work colleagues? How about your mother in-law? What about your nosy neighbour? Potential employers? Your church family? Your Girl Guide troop?
Start by creating lists that you can separate people into. Facebook will give you some categories to start with. Some people may need to go into more than one list, and that’s ok. I have lists for Friends, Family, Professional Contacts, Halifax Nova Scotia contacts, crafting acquaintances. I can share my latest card creation with my family & crafting friends. Personal photos might only be shared with family and friends. Local fundraising events are shared with people in my Halifax, Nova Scotia list. And so on.
Put everyone in a group.
For someone who has been on Facebook for a long time, this is the kicker. It could take you a very long time to put 500 or more friends into all these lists you’ve just created. If you don’t do it, lists won’t help you filter your status updates. For someone just getting in to Facebook, this is easy. Set up the lists right away and EVERY time you accept a new friend, add them to the appropriate list.
Remember to USE what you’ve created.
This is probably the hardest thing for me. Because it’s a newer feature, I forget to customize each update. You can set a default for your most common choice, which is very helpful. To change who is able to see your update, simply click on the small padlock icon under the status update bar and choose “custom”. This will open up a window where you can choose who to include and exclude. Here you can choose to include and exclude groups and individuals. If you forget to make this selection while writing your update, you can also change the sharing settings afterwards in the same manner.
If you are organizing a surprise party for your husband, who is also on Facebook, you can now sent a message via your update, to all friends & family and purposely exclude your husband. I can think of many reasons for excluding your husband from an update, but that’s another post.