Facebook Fan Pages vs. Email Subscription Forms

For any business that has a web presence, one of the most important activities is generating leads.  Most businesses these days capture leads with email subscription forms embedded on their websites.  This allows the business to build a large list of email addresses to whom they can keep in contact with for promotions, special offers, etc… and in turn, generate sales.

But wouldn’t a Facebook Fan Page provide a more valuable “list building” solution than email subscription forms?

When I think of a Facebook Fan Page, I immediately associate it with a “permission based marketing tool”.  Meaning, people follow Facebook Fan Page voluntarily by pressing the “Become A Fan” button.

And people know that once they are following a Facebook Fan Page, they are opting in to receive updates from that Facebook Fan Page.

So now whatever business owns that Facebook Fan Page can send out updates, promotions, and other informative content to their growing list of fans.  And better yet, the fans of your Facebook Fan Page can actually comment and interact with your comments and updates.

Doesn’t this make a Facebook Fan Page more valuable than an email subscription form?  Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Another advantage I see that Facebook Fan Page has over an email subscription form is that Facebook can deliver viral marketing to your business that email forms cannot.

As a fan of your Facebook Page, if I comment on that page then all of my friends can see that comment.  That comment is directly linked to your Facebook Fan Page which opens up exposure and traffic to a wide audience of people on Facebook that never would have heard of your business otherwise.

And I would also argue that it’s easier to get people to become a fan of your Facebook Fan Page than it is to get them to join an email subscription list.

A Facebook Fan Page promo box can easily be integrated into any website, and all someone has to do is push the “Become A Fan” button – no forms to fill out, no links to click in their email address to confirm their email subscription.

A Facebook Fan Page makes it super easy to build a “list of subscribers”.

So I guess what I’m saying is that the term “list of subscribers” is analogous to “fans of a Facebook Fan Page”.

And in my opinion, Facebook Fan Pages provide a more perspective value for list building than email subscription forms.

I now defer to you – what do you think?  Would you agree that a Facebook Fan Page is more valuable than an email subscription form and email marketing service?