We’ve all seen them. They’re on your newsfeed and get about as much attention as a nun’s bush. Facebook “sponsored posts”. Ok, so there’s very little point pissing and moaning about Facebook itself, it’s a free social network that everybody uses daily, so calling IT a scumbag would be pointless. Plus anytime i see someone with zero interesting qualities posting about how Facebook is selling their precious details and boring weekend photos to some unnamed third party, i generally urge them to hit the “delete account” option. It’s free. Nobody cares that much about your dull life. Post more photos of cats or videos of Slayer. Anyway, sponsored posts are annoying, and in the great gangbang of life, SOMEONE has to fuck themselves, and I nominate the people who USE them. And here’s why.
The idea of a sponsored post is to reach a wider audience, which is or would be fine if there was any real gain from the point of view of the person/business/band using them, but there REALLY isn’t. Tayto crisps have a sponsored post in my newsfeed? Why? Who or what are Tayto crisps? That’s right, they’re those things that every person in this country has been shoving in their heads since before we could speak. Usefulness of advertising snacks to a nation who prides itself on eating junk? None. This works with any company using this as advertisement for shit that everyone knows about. nope, there wasn’t some collective amnesia, we didn’t forget that Dolmio makes pasta sauce ( if you live in the city, you probably exist on it.)
Now, to the REAL blood boiling offenders of “sponsored posts”. And i KNOW some of you will agree with me on this. me and you, we’re tight like that, right?
Something popped up recently that basically spurned this entire diatribe on. It was a singer who specialised in acoustic covers of shit like Drake, Lady Ballgag etc… Now, for the life of me i cannot see the point of acoustic covers of pop songs anyway. Yep, you slowed down a Britney Spears song and sang it in a “heartfelt” way. Fine. Your 17 year old friends love it. Right on. But, you decided that you needed to share that with strangers. No dice, partner. You set that target audience, and somehow thought that i needed to hear it, subscribe to your Youtube channel to “check out” more Drake covers. Fuck Drake anyway, i’m pretty sure he’s another rapper who claims to be a genius, raps mostly about being a genius, and is about as much of a voice of a generation as Matchbox 20 were in the 90’s. The idea that someone insists themselves on people who have zero interest is bad enough, I mean it really is the pits, but what exactly is the end result here? And this is the arc of my entire point; exactly WHAT is the end result? A few new followers? Then what? There is NO product on sale. You can’t SPEND facebook likes, and the myth that if you have X amount of Facebook “fans” somehow equals stardom is exactly that; a myth. Ditto bands who have 200 followers, a black and white promo photo of themselves staring ruefully in the distance. No, chances are i really don’t need to hear your new “single”, recorded on Pro Tools in your drummers’ basement. How many of your friends have EVER said “oh hey, dude, i heard this amazing band. found ’em on a suggested post.” Fucking NONE, that’s how many. Now i know, some of you are shaking your head and saying “but what about that really great local band who have a new EP out and have a sponsored post for it?” Really, are they gigging it? Well then, if I fall into their “target audience” then there’s a good chance i’ll hear ’em play it at some point, won’t I. Oh they AREN’T touring it or playing a bunch of local shows to support this great new EP? Then they’ve missed the point of being in a band and now i REALLY don’t want to hear their music. You CANNOT pay for fame. At least not if you have a shred of integrity or good old fashioned faith in your art.
The reasoning is; today’s market is so cluttered that you need to pay to advertise your music.
So to break it down; advertisement is everywhere so the best thing to do is advertise.
The best things don’t NEED to be insisted upon you, you’ll find them yourself, through friends or good old fashioned hard work.
To sum all this up, because I SWEAR I had a point; you’re using it wrong. Facebook and any other social media has never been about breaking new bands, it’s always been where GOOD bands point their fans towards new releases, merch, tour dates. The idea that Myspace “made” The Arctic Monkeys is ridiculous, the band gained a following through gigging extensively, which is the truth for any successful band or act. If you already have a following then social media is a useful tool to keep them informed, if not then you need to book some shows, because none of the artists you love “made it” with a sponsored post, and neither will you.