I have learned all of this the hard way. In one of my most early start-up companies, we were deciding whether or not to buy some Facebook likes or Twitter followers so that we didn’t look like a bunch of jabronis. We went forward and thought we were pretty cool with a few thousand “fans.” But really… they weren’t fans. They were random fake profiles from various countries. When we posted something on our Facebook page… we’d get zero likes.
We really felt the pain when we tried to actually do some legit Facebook marketing. Facebook’s algorithm had no idea how to build an audience for us because our existing followers were so whacked out.
There is an old saying: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. This adage holds true when it comes to taking shortcuts with your social media strategy. Getting a quick boost for your business by purchasing Facebook likes and Twitter followers is tempting, but doing so is likely to cause far more problems than it solves. From damaging your company’s reputation for integrity to skewing your marketing data, in the long run, buying Facebook likes and Twitter followers will cost far more than growing your business organically.
5 Reasons Not To Buy Facebook Likes or Twitter Followers
Companies just starting out on social media – or those that have been neglecting their social media strategy – often find the process for getting the necessary likes and followers frustrating. They want that “vanity metric” to help them look “more legit” to others that might look at their social profiles. They figure that if they have a bunch of fans and followers, that others will somehow find them more attractive and follow them as well. But the bottom line is that there is no shortcut to being legit.There is no shortcut to being legit Click To Tweet
Services that offer to increase your likes and followers for a fee are tempting. However, this is never the best solution for creating a robust social media presence. Here are 5 reasons why:
Social media users are quite sophisticated when it comes to spotting incongruous social media activity. Those who are familiar with your page will notice when your page likes and Twitter followers increase suddenly – often overnight. Users visiting for the first time are likely to scan through your recent posts, and they can tell something isn’t right when you have thousands of followers but minimal interactions per post. Purchasing likes and followers is unpopular among your current and prospective customers, as it demonstrates a lack of authenticity and dilutes your reputation for integrity. Businesses that have tried this route often find that they receive the wrong kind of attention for their efforts.
Facebook and Twitter want to ensure that users see the most valuable content on their feeds, so in addition to looking at the number of page likes and followers, the algorithm measures the quality of posts. Several factors go into ranking post quality – all related to how much your followers interact with it. Unfortunately, liking, sharing and commenting on individual posts isn’t part of the package when you buy followers. If you have too many posts that are ignored, you can expect that fewer “real” users will see you on their feeds. This is exactly the opposite of the results you expect when you buy Facebook likes and Twitter followers.
Both Facebook and Twitter have developed paid advertising opportunities, and most businesses build their social media brand organically through sponsored posts. These posts are structured to ensure that your current social media followers see your message. However, the money you spend on this sort of advertising gives you no return on investment if your audience was purchased.
The personal data that users include in their social media profiles is rich in detail, and you are unlikely to be able to target your advertising with such precision anywhere else. However, when you purchase social media likes and followers, the demographic information is useless, which means you lose access to an extraordinarily valuable resource.
Terms of Service
Finally, social media platforms strictly prohibit users from purchasing likes and followers – and they are quite skilled at identifying accounts in violation of this rule. Losing your account as a result of buying followers is a serious blow to the effectiveness of future marketing campaigns.
Cut Your Losses, Start Over, Or Start Deleting
I met with a guy the other day that had purchased 10’s of thousands of followers. My advice? Just delete your account bro. Start over.
If you don’t want to start over… there is a solution. It’s tedious and time-consuming, but well worth the effort. Using tools offered by paid advertising features, you can break down the demographics of your followers. Most fake and purchased accounts are assigned to a country that you probably don’t otherwise do business in. Then – unfortunately – you will have to remove them one by one. Facebook offers a series of courses to better manage your marketing efforts, and you can learn more about removing paid followers through the help section. The Twitter Help Center has a series of articles on identifying and removing fake followers, as well.
Instead of investing your resources in purchasing likes and followers, increase your fan base organically. A comprehensive social media strategy will include high-quality, engaging content that inspires real social media users to interact with your page.