When Facebook launched Timeline for brands in March, brands immediately recognized the potential of the new format. But the big, looming question was, "How do I get started?"

With that question in mind, here are six straightforward ways to optimize your brand's Timeline to drive better marketing performance.

1. Update your cover photo to reflect your brand's goals

Brands are bringing attention to new products and campaigns by harnessing the power of Timeline's most noticeable feature: the cover photo. Use that amazing piece of digital real estate to showcase a unique image that's relevant to both your brand and the latest initiatives you want to support.

A prime example of a page with well-executed cover photos is Hostess, updates its cover photo to reflect its latest product launches—such as its new Baseball Cupcakes. Mindful that brands are discouraged from including explicit calls to action in cover photos, Hostess instead grabs fan attention by employing big, bright images and calling out product names.

Those visual elements are echoed across the Hostess Timeline, from the profile picture to the apps to the photo posts, reinforcing brand engagement and generating more awareness.

2. Don't forget about the profile pic

Following the initial launch of Timeline, Facebook recommended that brands use their standard logos as their profile pictures. Although your profile picture should convey who you are, making occasional changes can help boost awareness for new brand initiatives. After all, profile pictures show up in your fans' news feeds and can draw them to your page. And Facebook recently gave a nod to their significance by expanding the profile pic's width and height to 180 pixels.

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Mark Cooper is CMO of Offerpop, an easy-to-use next-gen SaaS platform that enables marketers to create campaigns on Facebook and Twitter in minutes.