Facebook launched a major feature last year that was basically copied from Twitter. The new Facebook Subscribe button allows you to keep a track of feeds from any Facebook users that are public. You may not need to be a friend of the user to subscribe but they need to share the posts with the public.
The Subscribe concept is taken from the Follow concept of Twitter and looks like a blatant rip off but Facebook has done similar things in the past with Smart Lists from Google Plus as well and status messages from Twitter updates.
Facebook allows you to subscribe to posts or photos or specific updates so they have elaborated the concept and set up filters. The Facebook user now has the option of adding a subscribe button to their profile and can chose what posts and updates he wants to share with subscribers. They do not have to approve subscribers like Friend requests.
With this Facebook aims at keeping the user in its ecosystem and directly challenge Twitter as the Follow concept forms the root of Twitter. Facebook aims to reach out to a wider audience with this feature and encourage users to engage on a larger platform. Facebook wants to become more of a broadcasting medium like the role Twitter currently plays.
The subscribe feature also allows the user to filter what posts they want to view from their subscribed people and friends so works both ways. It shifts the focus more on content relevance and the interest factor.
What does this mean for the average user that used to share on Facebook and post on Twitter?
If you are a journalist, a public figure or a Social Media Manager, you would love the new Subscribe feature as it allows you to post updates and share them with the public without have to Friend all. Facebook does have a limit on number of friends and this lets you reach out to very broad audience. You should not abandon Twitter as Twitter has its faithful followers but connect your accounts and interlink your public posts.
This will ensure that you drive traffic to your Facebook profile and eventually your website. Facebook does provide a larger set of features for you to use than Twitter and the subscribe button is one more feather in the cap.
According to Facebook, journalists have begun using the Subscribe Feature and it has been getting good feedback from the community. Facebook has a dedicated marketing team working on reaching out to content producer as it works to break Twitter’s stranglehold on the information network market. Twitter is popular in the community as a breaking news platform considering and its role in the recent political developments in the Middle East has been recognized.
Till more data emerges regarding the Facebook Subscribe Feature and Social Media Specialists analyze and decide, Twitter will continue to remain popular as it has been providing this feature since inception and people normally take time to adjust and adopt. Till then, keep Tweeting and posting.
Cynthia Reese is a freelance writer who likes writing on social media trends, Business strategy and Business communication. Currently she is involved in writing for www.lahondaworld.com.