Twenty days after Facebook's Timeline has become publicity visible for all Pages, and once I have used it extensively, it is clear to me that Facebook's goal is to make Pages more about storytelling than product selling. (I'd say that in a way they are going after Twitter).
The death of the default landing tab reduces engagement with signup widgets and contests. This is bad news for aggressive marketers, who are forced to use Facebook ads.
Now the interaction with a brand is based on content and what friends are saying. Businesses need to express themselves more visually and their feed of updates must be more engaging. Brands with a long, colorful history have the most to gain from Timeline.
This is what the inventor of Timeline, Facebook product manager Sam Lessin, said about it:
"We're doing this because consistency matters. Organizations have identifies too. A lot of brands aren't great storytellers, but the best ones are. All brands should aspire to that level with their Timeline. It weaves together the best stories from the brand and the best stories from your friend about the brand."