“I’ve known them for years, and I thought that it was a little strange that out of nowhere she was a doing social media work and suddenly had tens of thousands of followers. I knew she was one to cut corners. She was getting consultancy gigs off the back of this, but no-one I knew in social knew her, had met her or had heard her speak. When she finally got a speaking gig, I was tempted to go along and out her but I resisted the temptation and she cancelled at the last minute. It was enough for me to know that she was blagging it, had bought fans and it was enough for her to know that I knew.”
This was a conversation I recently had with a friend, where she talked of her frustration of those who fake their social media numbers.
It’s easy to buy fans and it’s easy to buy them cheap. 10,000 for $5 dollars seems to be the going rate. People have different positions on this:
– Some say buying followers is no different to buying advertising space.
– Others say it’s a breach of trust, so why would you work with such people.
What do you think?
You could argue that:
– You know when you’re looking at an advert that it’s been paid for. But at first glance you don’t know when you’re looking at followers or fans that they’ve been paid for.
I’m not a fan (pardon the pun!).
I think it’s a weaker long term strategy as it’s saying something that isn’t true. You don’t have that number of people following you/ liking you. And when you take into account the impact that this has on reach and who ‘the most influential person at an event may be’ although the impact of buying fans is a big temptation, the impact of misleading others could end up having bigger consequences. Is it worth it?
If you want any further proof, look at those who have bought followers and don’t want to talk about it. Generally, I feel we get embarrassed or awkward about things we’re a little ashamed of.
As our social footprint becomes increasingly important, perhaps in the future as well as ‘credit checks’ we’ll see ‘social media checks.’
If relationships are built on trust, why buy followers and pretend you haven’t. Retweet this.
In my series looking at Twitter tools, here’s a tool that will help you work out how your account looks. Why don’t you see what it says about you and tidy up your account if you have fake followers in your ‘tribe.’ You can also see what it says about those you know.
Try out Fakers Status People and have a look to see how you and how your friends perform on this. You only get 3 free searches, so check the priority ones first. And before you’re tempted to call others out, I think it’s important to remember that we all make mistakes and have our own weaknesses. I’ve learnt from seeing my own weaknesses in all of it’s glory that it’s not my place to stand in judgement, but hopefully the discussion may give us confidence to believe in our long term potential over the short term gain.
What are you thoughts?
Is it cheating buying fans/followers? Have you been tempted? Why have you/ have you not purchased fans? Are you ever tempted to ‘out those’ who have bought fans?
I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.