Social Media, depending on your point of view, is either marketing heaven, free and easy to use, or a hellish wasteland of crap that is free and easy to annoy the hell out of people with.
If companies play the game properly you can get some useful tidbits of information, perhaps even engage in a little back and forth with them. Social media is supposed to be a conversation after all.
Case in point, New Art Club, the comedic dance duo of Pete Shenton and Tom Roden. Following New Art Club via Facebook and Twitter has proven to be an exercise in the latter.
Why's that you may ask? Well somebody, somewhere decided it would be a good idea to put out their entire tour schedule via individual messages on their Facebook page.
So what you get are twelve messages in the space of about an hour. Not short messages either. You get the full press blurb, date and the venue, all months away so of very little practical use.
New Art Club It is 1983 - Madonna releases her first album, Boy George is top of the UK singles chart with 'Karma Chameleon' and 13 year old future contemporary dance star Tom Roden illegally tapes the first 'Now What I Call Music' LP onto a C60 cassette.
Fast forward 27 years - Madonna is a divorcee on a mission to adopt Africa, Boy George is a man with conviction after all and Tom has teamed up with Pete Shenton to form New Art Club. Finding the cassette one day, the two of them listen to it and a brand new show is born........ etc
The resulting mess in the news stream, especially on Facebook, makes the company look bad in more ways than one.
To add insult to injury for their followers you also get the same information on Twitter, since they have linked them together, so what goes out on Facebook also ends up on the micro messaging site.
We point this out to illustrate two things. Try very hard not to spam the people who are actually interested in what you do (a couple of messages a day at most) and don't link your Facebook page to your Twitter account.
It might also be a good idea to actually engage with your followers and not use either platform as a broadcasting station.
Update: in the short time it took us to write this, New Art Club have deleted all of the annoying Facebook updates along with a few complaints from their followers.
Update II Thursday 29 July: And now we have Motionhouse Dance Theatre doing exactly the same thing. Come on folks, check the image below to see what a lot of people will do if you flood their Facebook or Twitter streams with too much information.