As a consultant specialising in music digital marketing and PR I found myself working on a project where the client decided to use software more commonly know as "bots" to boost his artist's Facebook and Twitter numbers. This was against my clear and firm recommendations. However, this client went ahead with this cheat of a tactic anyway.
What he didn't fully understand is that artificially pulled accounts may as well be artificial accounts as the person the account is attached to didn't not personally approve the "like or "follow."
Any following spam in their newsfeed will be ignored, unliked or unfollowed. He also didn't take into account that Facebook users can report this activity as spam. Some accounts get banned from Facebook for these actions.
Neverthless, I was so disgusted at the lack of ethics regarding this practice that I dropped them as a client and distanced myself from the agency providing the service. I should probably mention this agency had met with me and I had been very clear on best practice in this area. The Director there still decided to go ahead and source someone who used this type of software.
Ridiculously, the manager following this artificial campaign decided to pitch the newly added accounts for funding via a crowdfunding platform. Of course, it didn't work out and not much money was raised leaving the manager and the agency to pick up the shortfall in funds.
Put it this way - if someone on the street shoved a flyer into your bag and then asked you for a cheque - would you write it?
No, I didn't think so.
It may feel good to say you have 5000 fans on your Facebook page but when it comes to getting cold hard cash out of those "fans" - you'll find that you're speaking to pixels. And pixels don't have purses to open.
In the end - this particular artist fired her longtime manager and it would seem that not much consistent progress or set up has been made by any of the parties. This is what happens when people spend 20-30 years of their lives looking for a quick fix.
You are better off taking the time to nurture 1000 true fans than cheating your way to 5000 fans and still finding that you can't pay your rent.