I don’t mean to get controversial in this blog post, but it in my opinion I don’t get why it would be. Because to me, buying likes and followers on Instagram should just be a general no-no. But it’s still happening. A LOT. Especially within the content creator and influencer field. Which is just a shame really. The notion of buying likes and followers on Instagram isn’t a new one. It’s been a thing ever since I started my personal Instagram account 8 years ago. So it’s not a new fad, or trend, and it has been proved to be somewhat unsuccessful. So why is it still a thing?
The main thing people want out of it is growing their account I presume. To organically grow your Instagram account right now, with the current algorithms and climate, its hard. SO DAMN HARD. And I think anyone who doesn’t use Instagram for a job, content creating or business purpose will even begin to understand that. But take it from me – its a lot of effort and despite people saying ‘it’s not a numbers game’ it somewhat is. So I guess the act of buying followers and likes is partially down to that pressure riding on content creators to have a certain level of following in order to make it a job. I get that, but it’s not the answer. And here’s why…
Instagram doesn’t like it. In fact, if they catch you doing it then they aren’t afraid to deactivate your account. When you sign up to use an app or site to buy your followers it adds a third party app to your Instagram account. You can view all the third party apps connected to your account in your settings. Instagram has been trying to cut down on third party apps as a whole, even planning apps. Instagram also likes to purge accounts that are seen as bot accounts. When you buy accounts the majority are inactive bot accounts, so even if you buy followers, the likelihood of them being purged and your follower account significantly dropping over night is high.
Buying followers and likes wrecks your engagement. Buying followers will offer skew your follower to engagement ratio. These accounts won’t engage with your content and people are left thinking 100,000 followers but 500 likes… somethings wrong here. So whilst people thinking they need more followers. They might do. But they need followers who will engage with their content and not sit their dormant and make your accounts stats worse.
Linking to this, brands notice this. If you have poor engagement it will affect your relationship with brands and the ability to work with them. Second to this, brands can easily tell if content creators or influencers have bought followers or likes. They have platforms in order to analyse the followings, but let’s be honest, it doesn’t take a genius to go through someones likes or followers and see it being filled with bots to understand they are fake. In this sense, it’s better to have a small engaged audience than a large dormant one.
And lastly, it wrecks your capability. If you have to buy followers and likes it doesn’t say much about your ability to run your account. I am sorry to be so harsh but its true. There are other steps to take in order to reanalyse your account rather than buying likes and followers. For example looking at the content you are posting, the hashtags you are using, the types of content like carousels or reels. Whether you are a business or creator on Instagram the brand integrity you hold in order to make your page or business a success is massive. And if you buy followers or likes it won’t get you anywhere in the long run.
But if you are sat here thinking, god, thats me there is no going back from this. Thats not true. The best way to solve this? Delete all those accounts. Go through and remove bot followers or likes and it will be a clean slate. Yes all those followers are gone, but it’s the best way to start building that integrity and trust up.
On my 19th birthday I woke up to over a thousand new followers. I was like wait a second? What has happened? I was on about 7600 followers at the time and it jumped to about 8500. Someone had sent me a message along the lines of ‘It’s your birthday and I wanted to give you a present of you 8000 follower goal’. I had never spoken to this person nor did I know who they were but somehow they had bought followers for my account. It actually made me feel a bit sick, so I blocked them straight away and made sure all those bot followers were deleted. It took me a few hours to do but I just couldn’t fathom all those bot followers and how suspicious that jump looked.
So let me know what you think about buying likes and followers on Instagram in the comments below…
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That is such a strange birthday gift to give someone. I agree with you engagement is far more important, especially when it translated to sales which is what brands are looking for.
I had no idea who they were too!
I wish more people could read this Emily, it’s horrible when you know someone has bought followers, brands aren’t completely stupid! x
Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk
I see so many big influencers still doing it and its SUCH a shame!