The Facebook newsfeed is quite probably the most viewed page on the entire site, with users following what their friends are up to on a regular basis. Because so much is going on, there’s a strong incentive to interact with what you find on your newsfeed, either by commenting or liking the content.
On Facebook the notification feature allows you to easily keep up to date with the things you’ve already interacted with and because it’s likely that you’ve interacted with quite a lot, it becomes an essential feature to allow you to instantly get to the bits you’re interested in. In some ways it’s a bit like the ‘what’s new’ link on many discussion forums.
Now LinkedIn announced today that they’re rolling out their own version of the notifications feature.
Launching today is our new notifications feature, which will keep you notified in real-time when someone likes what you’ve shared on LinkedIn, views your profile, accepts your invitation, and much more.
It’s clearly designed to replicate what Facebook have, but will it work? Will it encourage more people to interact with the status updates of their network?
I’m not sure it will. I just don’t think that people hangout on LinkedIn in the way they hang out on Facebook. Because the site is a professional network rather than a social network, users are more inclined to treat their time seriously, and therefore nip onto LinkedIn to get their thing done and then leave again. This could be to message a contact or post a question on a group, but casual browsing in the hope of finding something useful isn’t done anywhere near as much as on Facebook.
It’s a major reason why company pages haven’t really taken off, because updates are sent to peoples news feed rather than their inbox. For me LinkedIn would be better served improving the features that users really do use, such as the groups, and not worry so much about those they don’t.
What do you think of the new notifications feature? Is it something you’d use?