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Why Buying Fake Twitter Followers is Always a Bad Idea

How Buying Twitter Followers Can Ruin Your Social Media Marketing Efforts

Social media is so beneficial for small businesses because it allows you to actively engage with your target market, as well as build your brand and give your company a personality which people can interact with.

As well as this, if you are running a content marketing campaign, social media is one of the best ways to share your content.

However, as social media becomes an increasingly important feature of the online marketing landscape, the number of followers you have is becoming something of a status symbol for businesses.

There is an enormous pressure on companies and public figures to have huge numbers of followers and appear really popular. Sometimes it feels like Twitter has turned us into a bunch of 14 year olds!

The pressure is so great that many brands and celebrities have been accused of buying fake social media followers to bolster their social media metrics and appear more reputable and influential than they really are.

It is even estimated that Barack Obama, the 3rd most followed person on Twitter, has around 20 million fake twitter followers! – However, we’re not saying that he’s bought these followers.

Most of the time, these fake followers are “bots”, created by software which people can use to automatically create and control legions of fake twitter accounts.

However, just because a person has fake followers, it does not necessarily mean that they have bought fake followers, and they may not even be aware that they have any. Many fake follower profiles will follow some real people, so that they look more genuine.

These fake profiles tend to follow influential figures (which goes some way to explaining why someone like Barack Obama would have so many fake followers) and the bigger your Twitter presence is, the more fake followers you will naturally attract over time.

However, in the majority of cases, if a Twitter profile has a significant proportion of fake followers, you can be fairly sure that that person has bought followers from any one of the huge number of companies that peddle fake twitter followers online.

What Fake Followers Can Do For Your Business!

fake twitter followers

The good news is that you can buy more than 1,000 fake followers for the price of 2 meals at Burger King.

The bad news is, well, pretty much everything else.

Here are 5 reasons why you shouldn’t ever buy twitter followers:

1. Fake followers pose a real, and significant, risk to your legitimate followers.

Many fake profiles engage in any number of scams, which can be used to gain people’s passwords and other important information. At best, this can mean that peoples’ social media accounts get hacked.

At worst, it can result in monetary and credit card fraud. If you really care about social engagement, don’t put your customers and connections at risk.

2. Fake followers are utterly useless for engagement.

In 99.9% of cases, once your fake follower has followed you, that’s it – you’ll never get any more engagement from them.

The whole point of social media is that it allows you to engage, interact and share your content and ideas.

Even if this aspect of social media doesn’t mean much to you, the fact that you have 50,000 Twitter followers but very little engagement is going to reflect badly on you – if you have thousands of Twitter followers and a low Klout score (Klout measures your influence online, but there’s arguments as to how accurate it is), no one’s going to take you seriously.

3. It’s easy to see how many fake followers you have.

If you’re not particularly bothered by suspiciously low levels of engagement and an embarrassing Klout score, it’s worth noting that anyone can see how many fake Twitter followers you have, at any time, for free.

Using a number of free tools, you can quickly and easily see how legitimate anyone’s followers are.

This is bad news if you have bought huge numbers of fake twitter followers, as it can make your business seem untrustworthy and devious.

People buy from those they trust, and this is a huge abuse of the spirit of social media, and shows disrespect for your real followers and connections.

Mediabistro put it well when they said buying fake followers shows that:

  • You think you’re smarter than everyone else (“They’ll never know.”)
  • You’re deceptive and make no apology for it (“So what if I do this? Who cares?”)
  • You have low self-esteem. Much like a fast car, an inflated follower count will not fix this.
  • You’re a fraud.

This is particularly true if you are a B2B company, as your credibility can be seriously compromised by buying fake followers. Buying followers have had big consequences for some companies and public figures.

4. Buying fake twitter followers can get your account deleted or banned.

Twitter’s terms of service make it very clear that buying fake followers isn’t allowed, and that any accounts breaking this rule can be suspended or even deleted at Twitter’s discretion. If you’re buying fake Facebook friends and likes, consequences can be similar.

Even worse, there have been hints that due to the advertising revenue generated by watching a YouTube video, Google are discussing the possibility of charging people who buy fake views with fraud.

5. You can accidentally follow fake accounts.

When people first start out on Twitter, they often follow back accounts which have followed them. Although this is quite a dubious practise from a marketing perspective, lots of businesses and Twitter users follow back their followers to quickly gain more people. As a result of this, many businesses are inadvertently following fake accounts.

As well as the other disadvantages above, following fake accounts limits the amount of people you can follow. Once you follow 2,000 people on Twitter you can’t follow more people until your follower ratio is ‘positive’. (Following: 2092 vs Followers: 2146)

Therefore, if you have been following a large amount of fake accounts, this can limit the amount of legitimate, useful accounts you can follow.

One good way to stop following fake accounts is to look for accounts which have:

  • No picture
  • Not tweeted in more than a month
  • A low number of tweets
  • A low number of followers

And stop following them.

How You Can Get Rid of Your Fake Twitter Followers

fake twitter followers

If you’ve been a bit naughty in the past and have bought a large number of fake twitter followers, there are a number of tools available to easily get rid of them.

Of all the services which do this sort of thing, we recommend using ManageFlitter, which has a free subscription that allows you to remove a limited number of fake followers every day.

Although the number of daily unfollows is limited, this actually works in your favour, as unfollowing a large number of people at once can get you in trouble with Twitter, and can even get your account suspended.

By using Manageflitter, or any other similar tool, you can quickly sort out your follower profile, and get back to concentrating on what’s really important on social media – connecting and building relationships with those who can help your business, or want to buy from you.

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Comments

  1. TubeShark says:

    I bought some Twitter followers from http://Wizish.com for my business website a few months ago lol we have over 20000 followers but no retweets or favorites. If you’re going to buy fake just to give yourself a little boost then I recommend having a few thousand real followers first so you at least have SOME interaction. It’s so obvious that you’re buying fake if you don’t.

  2. I have a number of people following me that are obvious fake accounts. I want to get them to stop following me. Are there any free services that do this?

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