Buying Insta & Twitter Love, Never!
Here at Mark Summers Casting & Management we would never, ever consider buying followers– frankly, we don’t need to- but there are many reasons as to those who do.
We all know that buzz we get when we notice a slew of new followers on Insta or Twitter, right? This goes double for companies who rely on social media interaction to boost sales and business. However, the buzz is probably more around the projected padding of their wallet.
Although the concept has been around since the beginnings of social media, ‘buying’ followers has become more common in business today. It may look good on the surface, seeing a company that has 1 million followers on Twitter. But the question is: how many of those followers actually interact with the posts? How many of those 1 million followers are real people, opposed to fake or spam accounts? Is it worth having so many followers if only a small percentage actually view the post?
There are some obvious reasons why a business wants to obtain more followers. For new companies, it definitely increases awareness and credibility. It allows potential customers to see that a lot of people enjoy what they are advertising/selling. Specific campaigns can be more effective because it looks like the business is more plausible and trustworthy. Since so many other people are engaging with it, legitimacy is the perception. Appearing as a more popular page on Twitter or Instagram increases the likelihood of engaging with real people and potential customers. Once the interaction is there, the business can start using analysis to see how many people a post reached, or when to boost outreach even further.
On the contrary, the negative side of buying followers can actually have the opposite effect. Getting masses of followers that are largely fake or ‘bots` will only give a business an initial boost in engagement. After that initial boost they then eventually flat line. It will look like they are not increasing interaction at all. Percentages actually decrease because the number of actual people is being compared to a bigger pool of followers. For example, a post that gets 200 likes on an account with 50,000 followers will have a much lower ratio in comparison to a post with 200 likes and only 1,000 followers. As the number of followers increases, so does the likelihood of spamming.
Sending out multiple posts about the same thing in a short period of time may seem like the right tactic, but it ends up annoying followers. Those followers are more likely to unfollow the account as a result. Most consumers with real accounts will not overlook an account that is following 20,000 people but only have a few hundred followers. People have the ability to go into the lists of followers and see that some of the accounts are bots. This can be a giant red flag for some people and turn them away from hitting that follow button.
So how would you go about buying followers on Twitter? The first way would be to aggressively follow large masses of accounts and then wait a day for them to follow you back. If they don’t follow back, then you unfollow them. This can be an effective way of doing it, but over the years most social media platforms have caught on. If suspected of abusing this scheme, Twitter or Instagram have the right to suspend the account. You can also pay third party companies called zombie accounts to get more followers for you. However, these accounts are typically inactive or random usernames combined together, so it is obvious that they are fake. And although buying followers has become relatively inexpensive — less than £10 for 1,000 followers — there are certainly ways to gain more followers for free.
Experts generally agree that it’s better to have a lower number of followers that actually engage with posts than to have 1 million followers who simply scroll through and may not even be real people. Last year Facebook claimed that there were over 83 million fake Facebook accounts. Sometimes these fake accounts can even be harmful because the businesses end up having to buy third-party tools in order to block the spam accounts.
It really comes down to a matter of preference and a social media manager’s perspective. If your business benefits from a large number of followers regardless of interaction, then buying followers may be of interest. If your business focuses on more intimate relations with their customers, a more organic method may be a better option. Nothing beats actually meeting people face to face.
Here are some tips on how to get more followers without having to buy them:
- Use hashtags. The more the better. People scroll through hashtags similar to their own on a regular basis.
- Add a location. People are more likely to engage when they see you are near them or in a place that interests them.
- Mention other users. The more direct connections, the better.
- Engage with others. Make it a two-way street instead of expecting likes for nothing in return. Quid pro quo, right?!
- Sharing the love, or other people’s content. They’ll be more likely to do it for you later.
By Lindsey Davis, current Intern at Mark Summers Casting & Management
Follow me on Instagram: @davislindsey
Follow the team on Twitter: @MS_Artists and Instagram: @marksummerscasting_mgt