Musicals, Facebook pages and psychopaths!
The Age wrote a rather scathing article today entitled ‘Why you should delete your Facebook page’. And while I strongly believe in the power of Facebook, in lecturing why people should log off, they suggested a couple of reasons why Facebook pages are actually important – especially for theatrical productions!
We have all heard the naysayers for years calling for an end to Facebook and this article doesn’t provide many new arguments against the social media platform. The article cites issues like wasting time, ruining your job prospects when employers ‘research’ potential employees and prolonging the awkwardness of break-ups. As I said, nothing new.
But in refuting the importance of Facebook to society they have brought up a couple of good ideas that you should use in a Facebook page for a musical or play.
The most recent in this barrage of reasons to deactivate Facebook relates to employment. Most of us are friends with co-workers or even out bosses on Facebook, so of course posting pictures of your day at the races after you called in sick isn’t a clever idea. But more and more we are hearing of recruitment agencies or departments using the platform to do a bit of investigative research into potential employees.
In this sense, it really comes down to how the individual uses Facebook. If you constantly upload photos into the public album ‘Drunken nights with mates’ where your potential employer gets a pictorial account of your weekend adventures similar to any of The Hangover franchise, then you deserve not to get the job. But if you use your account to share insightful articles in the employment field and connect with other like minded professionals, then you can use the platform to your advantage.
Same goes for theatre.
The fact that all these employers are turning to Facebook to find out more information says that Facebook is quickly becoming a new form of Google. And if it has worked its way into the professional world, you can bet it is well ingrained into the behaviours of the average person.
So what does this mean . . .
When making a decision regarding whether to spend money on a show, chances are that consumers will visit the Facebook page first. As the article says, we spend on average between 64 and 81 minutes on Facebook each day. That looks like a pretty good window of time to convince potential audience members to come to your show.
And the same thing goes for theatre. There are smart ways to use the Facebook page, such as running competitions, posting insightful updates and providing lots of appealing pictures that give consumers a behind-the-scenes look at the production. And then there are the ‘Hangover style’ use of Facebook pages without any recent updates, out of date information and incorrect links to purchase tickets. Believe me, they are out there!
I just want to leave you with a quote from the article that sums up my feelings towards the importance of Facebook:
“Other studies have shown that employers may believe a person not on Facebook is a psychopath, although that’s one of the most extreme conclusions.”
So don’t let your brand be seen as a psychopath and use Facebook effectively!
Let me know what you think. Do the risks of using Facebook outweigh the benefits?