Think fake followers are your cheap, fast track way to success? Think again.
We know the appeal of having hundreds of thousands of social followers is real. We also know you can achieve it in an instant – without becoming famous overnight. But buying followers is damaging to not only your account, but your reputation as a content creator.
Some creators believe the more followers you have, the more brand collaborations you will secure. But today, this is not the case. Brands no longer only look at your following. Instead, they tend to seek out creators who have a high engagement rate and a strong connection with their local following. Something fake followers can’t help you with.
Keep reading to discover the real impact of buying fake Instagram followers and how you can grow your account in a more authentic and sustainable way.
The cost of buying fake followers is surprisingly cheap. They’re also very accessible and easy to purchase. Plus, the amount of increased followers will give you a sense of credibility and worth, which is what every creator wants. Right?
Wrong. This is a false sense of credibility and worth. Fake followers don’t engage with your content making them worthless. Bots won’t like, comment, save or share your posts. They’ll just sit there, dragging your engagement rate down. Nor will they help your reach or impressions, other metrics brands look for when collaborating with creators.
This hinders your chances of securing brand collaborations, ruins your chances of becoming a Vamp creator and will cause your actual followers to lose trust, potentially resulting in a loss of real followers.
Risks and no reward
One of the main risks that comes with buying fake followers is triggering Instagram’s moderators and having your account suspended. Buying followers violates Instagram’s Community Guidelines and in the past, the app has purged and removed all likes, comments and followers from third-party apps.
Another risk is once you have bought the Instagram followers, you don’t have any guarantee of safety. The company who you purchased these bots from will unlikely regulate their site or be there for you to answer any questions or concerns you may have. Or worse, the company will have access to your Instagram account which could put it at risk.
Once your followers and potential collaborators find out that you have bought your following (which they eventually will), you lose all trust and people won’t want to follow a ‘fake influencer’ or collaborate with a creator whose audience isn’t real.
Of course a small number of fake follower tag alongs is the annoying (but inevitable) reality of having an Instagram following. The goal is always to keep your bot count low and engagement rate high. Learn more about spotting fake followers and what to do about it here. And discover how to de-bot your Instagram following here.
How to gain real Instagram followers
Now we’ve warned you off the fake followers, you’ll want to know how to gain some real Instagram followers. Every creator should grow their Instagram in a positive and sustainable way. It makes the journey of being a creator exciting as you can see your hard work being paid off when you gain a real, authentic audience.
Luckily there are plenty of ways to organically grow your following:
Make your account public. Sound obvious, but it’s important. It will allow your content to potentially make it onto the Explore Page, a sure fire way to boost your following, and gives potential followers a preview.
Engage with similar accounts. Interacting with like-minded creators is how you’re going to get on their radar and encourage them to follow you. Like their content, leave meaningful comments, save and share their work and give them a follow.
Create high-quality content. When users come across your profile, give them a reason to stay with your high quality content. How do you know which posts are performing the best and resonating with your audience? Use your analytics to discover these post insights.
Use every inch of Instagram. Instagram has confirmed that the most successful creators on the platform are those who use all of the different features available. This includes in-feed posts, Stories, IGTV’s, Lives and Reels.
Use relevant hashtags. To increase your reach, and have new users find your account, use specific hashtags that are relevant to your content. Research these hashtags prior to using them and check your post’s analytics to learn how many users came through your hashtags. This will indicate how effective they are.
Need more tips to help you grow your local following? Here are our top seven.