Honestly, I hate that this is a topic that we have to talk about. As someone who works on both side of social media marketing, it is shocking to see the lengths people will go to just to prove themselves to the internet. From buying likes on a photo, to completely faking a following, there are a lot of people out there spending their money to avoid putting in the necessary work. If you’re curious about how to tell if someone has purchased their Instagram followers, then keep reading.
One of the most important reasons to not buy followers is because it seriously isn’t fair. You can never buy your way to the top, and if you do, it won’t work out for you. Additionally, it actually kills your engagement rate! The higher your follower number, the higher your engagement rate needs to be to balance out!
Engagement tells all!
The quickest way to identify if someone has purchased their Instagram followers is by their engagement rate. If someone has 100,000 followers, but only receives a few comments and likes, this could be a huge red flag. When you purchase followers or likes, you have to know that those are not real people. It doesn’t matter what the website says, what the reviews say, or anything. The only way to have an active following is by putting in the time and effort. I wrote a post about increasing your engagement, which goes further into detail!
As someone who has to find out if a creator works for my job, this is something that I really focus on. After all, the entire point of using influencer marketing is to utilize that creator as a form of advertisement. If there are few likes or no comments, that means their audience is not receiving their message. This could be because that person needs to realign their goal, or because they purchased their Instagram following.
Social Blade gives great insight
Influencer marketing has gotten to the point where we need to know quite a few different analytics. Social Blade is a site where you can find out information about a certain social media users profile. Social Blade has graphs to show the following rate, average likes, and views for platforms such as Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
A major red flag is a sudden spike in any area of a creator’s profile. An influencer that I was interested in for a project had gained over 5,000 followers within a matter of days. I know that social media can be crazy, but I doubt anyone is pulling that kind of growth, and if you are, let me know how! Her engagement rate was still the same, so I knew something was up. It was a clear sign that this person had purchased their Instagram followers, and we decided to choose a different route, and a different user altogether!
One of the biggest ways to see if someone purchased their Instagram followers
Here is a fun fact, your followers should come from relevant areas. Majority of my views come from either the United States, Canada, or the United Kingdom. When you purchase a following, it will completely throw your analytics off. Instead of logical places coming up, it will be quite a few different international locations. Primarily Asia, Middle East, or South America. Your audience should be from the location that you live in.
In terms of selecting influencers, audience location is something that I look at first. If the influencer is not reaching an audience that aligns with our target market, then we typically pass. If you aren’t using your analytics to grow your Instagram, then you’re missing out on some key elements that might help you monetize in the future!