Facebook has taken it's first real significant legal action against companies that are selling fake accounts, fake likes and fake followers to both Facebook and Instagram users. The way that the process works is you head over to google, type in “Buy Followers” or “Buy Likes” and you will see a wide range of choices and pricing structures to get what you want. If you are looking to increase your IG following you can buy thousands of “Likes” for the price of a Starbucks cup of coffee.
The problem of going down this rabbit hole is that once you buy these likes, followers, comments etc they are not actual real engaging follows. So yes visually you can increase your “vanity metric” of likes to those that view your profile. In the end you are ruining your chance to grow a healthier and REAL following organically.
With the way the algorithm works on Instagram and Facebook, your content is shown to a small percentage of your Likes and Followers. The small percentage of users that see your content do not engage with it. Facebook and Instagram see that content as not being valuable and will stunt the content reach from showing up in the newsfeed of other potentially REAL Followers.
To put this into perspective, if you had 200 REAL Likes and you were to buy 1,000 likes on Facebook for your business page to make it seem a little more impressive you would visually have 1,200 Likes. Looks great if you are a small business to have that many Likes, seems impressive to the naked eye. This also looks like what you are building is valuable and others might want to then Like your page.
Here is the problem: when you put out your next post whether it be a video, static image, or just plain text and Facebook shows that content to 50 of the Fake followers. Since they are fake, nobody engages with it, your potential reach to have your content shown to the 200 Real followers is almost zero.
Also if you had posted content to the 1,200 Likes and NOBODY engages with your content since it was shown to the fake accounts, your engagement rates will drop. If someone sees that you have 1,200 Likes and no engagement on any of your status updates that is going to potentially trigger a red flag to the customers.
Social Media Today has a great write up on this topic.
If you have never heard of the term LIKE FARM then please click HERE
That link is a simple google search and you can view for yourself how this process is done. It is rather amazing to be completely honest.
What are your thoughts about this process?