Followers (real ones) can’t be bought. Do you know the disadvantages of buying followers? You need to stop using this method.
I’m not kidding. Stop. You are not doing yourself any favours. You genuinely need to go back to the drawing board if you are the decision maker of your business’ brand and marketing strategies, and you think buying followers is a good move. We all want bigger numbers on our social media profiles, who doesn’t? You are straight-up lying to yourself if you don’t, but here’s the punchline -buying them is not the answer.
Here are my top 3 reasons for staying away from buying followers.
(1) Buying followers means they are not real people
There are two main sources:
a) Click farms
Click farms are ‘farms’ full of low-paid workers, usually in less economically developed countries that sit in a warehouse all day and, well..click. They click away ‘liking’ your content, they click away ‘following’ your accounts yet, never actually engaging.
Bots are the more popular option, but you will never know. They are more efficient to those running fake following services, they are also of course faster than click farm workers.
As you can probably tell, neither of these are nowhere near as good as actual people that engage with your content. Yes granted, the click farm workers are actually real people technically, but I promise you, they have 0 interest in your tweets and insta selfies. They only want their 7 cents an hour and to go home.
(2) Engagement will drop
I’m not good at maths, but even I can work this one out.
Without buying followers, let’s say you accumulate 100 in the first 2 months. These are actually people that are there because you provide them value. Imagine this scenario. You upload a post. It reaches around 70 of your followers. Of those 70, 30 hit ‘like’. Of those 30, 10 leave a comment. That’s an engagement rate of 30%. Which is pretty high, believe it or not!
Now let’s buy 1000 fake followers for £5 (yes, unfortunately it is that cheap). Now you have 1000 fake followers and 100 real followers. You upload a post whilst remembering, the fake ones don’t interact with your posts, they are only there for the number at the top of your profile to be bigger. 70 of your real followers see your post again, 30 hit ‘like’, and again, around 10 leave a comment. But all is not the same, because now your engagement rate is not 30% (30 of 100), it is now 30 of 1100, which is 2.7%. Which is very far below average.
Just to emphasise how bad of an idea this is, social media platforms prefer accounts with high engagement rates. Trending pages, recommended tabs etc, all favour accounts with high engagement. Yes your follower count might be nice and high, but the percentage of people actually interacting with your content suffers tragically.
(3) Reputation and account credibility will suffer
Let’s look at the Twitter policies, although other platforms do the same thing due to the popularity of this activity. You will find that purchasing followers is something they would like you to stay away from. Twitter can actually make an account “temporarily locked or subject to permanent suspension….if you are selling or purchasing account interactions (such as selling or purchasing followers, Retweets, likes, etc.)”.
The question is, is it really worth the bigger following count to suggest superior popularity and risk getting locked down or suspended? There are plenty of cases where accounts were suspended over breaking these terms and conditions, and therefore did more harm than good and most worryingly of all, still had to pay money for the service. Sadly, the number of accounts that get away with it outweighs the number of accounts that don’t, which continues to be a growing problem.
To conclude, I hope that I have succeeded putting you off of purchasing followers by portraying the facts and reasons for keeping things organic. There is an unlimited amount of free resources available online that will guide you in the best direction to grow your social media following and how to do so effectively. Furthermore, you will have the personal satisfaction of growing your community whilst providing value in the meantime.