Facebook Introduces: Close Friends and Subscriptions

Facebook has made changes to Profiles and these ones will help you!

You may have noticed that you have recently been asked to opt in to Subscriptions and there is a list called Close Friends down the left hand panel of your home page.

These changes will help you to

  • publish information to the right people
  • have more choice about what you see in your News Feed
  • help keep the balance between personal, professional and private
  • reach a larger audience
  • follow interesting people without having to friend them
  • make sure that you don’t miss important news from your close friends and family

What are the differences between Close Friends and Subscribers?

If you haven’t grouped your friends into different lists, now is a good time to start.  Read Facebook:  Why you should put your Friends into Lists if you want to know why.

Close Friends

We have a loser definition of friends since Facebook and you may have a mixture of family, close friends, acquaintances and customers in your list of Friends.  This is the group to put all the friends that you really care about.

  • The default for Close Friends is that you will see all their updates.
  • If you have a friend who you like but plays a lot of games it is now very easy to untick the games options so that they don’t feed into your News Feed. Click on the subscribe button to see all the options.
  • By adding people to this group you will automatically get notifications each time they post.  (I have switched off the notifications because my friends are quite active!)

  • You can also chose to post certain updates to this group exclusively by choosing close friends in the drop down box when you update your status.

  • By having your close friends in a list, it makes it easier to catch up with what they are up to.  If you have a lot of Friends and have liked a lot of Pages, it is easy to miss your close friends updates.


Facebook now allows you to subscribe to people’s updates without having to be friends.  This is similiar to the follow on Twitter.  You need to opt in to accept subscribtions.


  • Fine tune your News Feed – Each friend has automatically got a subscribe button.  You can easily fine tune which type of updates you want to see.  For example, you can switch off games if you don’t want them appearing in your feed.  You will receive all updates from people in your Close Friends lists, normal Friends you will get most of their updates as default and if you put people in the Acquaintances list, you will only see the most important updates.
  • Can subscribe to people without being friends – this means that you can follow what famous authors and celebrities are saying without having to be their Friend.  You will only be able to see their updates that are public and not the updates to their friends
  • People can subscribe to you without you accepting them as friends – this means that if you are using your profile to talk about your business, you don’t need to let subscribers see your personal photographs or posts.  You can reach a larger audience by making work related updates public.  Read Facebook Profiles: Personal, Professional and Private if you are using Facebook for a mixture of personal and business.

Note:  If someone puts in a Friends request, they will automatically be subscribed to your updates.  Did you know that?  Leave a comment below to let me know what you think.

Nicky Kriel

Nicky Kriel is a Social Media Coach & Trainer inspiring, educating and empowering Business Owners to use Social Media more strategically. She is also the author of bestselling, "How to Twitter for Business Success" and newly published "Converting Conversations to Customers". For more information visit http://www.nickykriel.com or to find out about her courses that she runs in Guildford visit http://www.nickykriel.com/courses

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