Never Buy Reviews, Followers or Likes – Here’s Why
We’re certain that at some point you’ve wanted more likes for your social media outlets. You’ve scrolled through your friends list and invited all those old pals from high school, some coworkers and maybe even a few relatives that you probably should consider a social media liability. It’s still not enough you want more.
For a brief second you consider buying some followers or likes. It looks easy enough! Spend a few dollars and get a huge audience for your page that will rival anyone in your industry.
Not so fast, there are a lot of risks that buying fake social media engagement can cause for your business in the long run. Not to mention it’s against the Terms of Service (TOS) on many social media platforms. Here’s the Facebook stance on fake activity and here’s the Twitter take on fake followers.
Just Say No
- Diminished Ranking: Facebook understands how appealing your page and the content posted to it is to people. If you’ve purchased thousands of inactive, non-engaged users it can make your page look like nobody is engaging with it to Facebook’s eyes and your posts will reach less people organically. You’ll likely only reach 5-10% of your audience organically anyhow, so why would you chance lowering that number by filling it with fake users?
- Loss of Credibility: Do you really think your users will fall for this? If you can tell a competitor has purchased fake engagement then why wouldn’t customers be able to tell as well? Also, your numbers will never match up. It says a whole lot more about your pages if you have a high number of followers and only a few likes per post.
- Advertising & Targeting: Here’s where buying fake engagement can negatively affect your page the most. If you spend any money advertising to your audience on Facebook a portion of that will inevitably end up being spent trying to reach your fake users. Congratulations, this has officially cost you twice!
- Skewed Demographics: Not only will buying fake reviews or likes mess up your advertising potential it can really screw up your demographic data for the nerds like us. Let’s say your social media presence and product is popular among Females between the ages of 18-30 living in an urban setting and you’ve bought some fake likes. You could potentially end up with an audience full of Males aged 50-64 that live in a rural area! Sure, there are some companies that sell fake likes from a specific audience of your choosing but they’re not selling you an audience with any long term engagement.
- Permanent Issues: Once you’ve purchased fake reviews, followers or likes you can’t get rid of them. It’s likely that you’ve permanently messed up your chances of getting some good advertising metrics using Facebook Ads and your audience. We’re sure someone out there could correct the effects of buying fake engagement but it would be an arduous task to complete.
- It’s just wrong: You know it is. It’s disingenuous. You’ve purchased likes but you’ve sold your integrity. Social media ultimately relies on honesty and transparency and you’re followers will likely see right through it. Heaven forbid someone calls you out on it and then you’ve got even more issues to deal with.
- It fixes nothing: In the case of your reviews, it fixes nothing at all. If you’re getting negative reviews online then you should probably address the issue. Simply overloading your score with fake positive reviews will certainly up your score but the negative reviews will undoubtedly continue rolling in. Negatives reviews aren’t necessarily a bad thing. They help your page establish credibility and building trust with your audience. MIT’s Sloan School of Management has done the research on negative reviews to prove it.
How To Do It Right.
If you really want to grow your social media presence here’s what you should be doing instead.
- Facebook Advertising: Use one of these types of promotions, website clicks, website impressions, post promotions. Heck, even running page likes campaigns will yield more meaningful results.
- Utilize Audience Data: Check your existing audience age, interests, day and time when they are active in your Page Insights to see the best day, demographic or interest to run your ads to. Use your audience data to create custom audiences based on visits from your website. Those people have already shown an interest if you!
- Content is King: We know, it’s a tired trope. Making sure that any content you publish is relevant to your audience, is potentially engaging, and most of all make sure it’s social is easily the strongest avenue to engage your audience.
- Create Rabid Fans: Make your organic audience do the work for you. Create content that your fans will want to share and show to their friends! Engage with them when they engage with your page. Social media, like all communications works two ways.
Buying likes, reviews or followers is a lot like paying people to be your friend. What happens when you stop paying? Would you pay someone to be your friend? Need some help getting your social media up and running and more importantly being genuine? Give us a call at 724-209-7852 or send us a message. We’d love to talk to you.