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The Impact of Hiring Fake Influencers with Fake Followers
By implication, creators using fake followers willingly render themselves to be fake influencers. Creators build their success on a trustworthy reputation. Resorting to fake followers to build one’s brand cannot establish credibility as a creator.
Creator dishonesty can have negative consequences for the brands that partner with them. In most cases, creators using fake followers deceive brands about their ability to convert consumers during a campaign.
Additionally, agencies that supply fake followers will often have those followers like a brand’s social media page. When customers examine a brand’s followers closely and discover that some of them are fake, the brand loses credibility in the eyes of that consumer. Fake followers on a brand’s profile could also keep honest creators from wanting to collaborate.
The end result of partnering with fake influencers is little to no ROI and possibly even a damaged reputation. Against the backdrop of what good creators can do, recruiting wanna-be creators with fake followers can cost a brand thousands of dollars per campaign.
Fake followers are social media accounts that someone (usually an agency) creates for the sole purpose of boosting follower counts.
These profiles do not belong to an active user. In some cases, these fake profiles steal personal information from real social media accounts.
Either way, fake followers are not real people. Agencies that sell “more followers” or “more likes/comments” are most often creating fake followers to boost an aspiring influencer’s numbers.
Even if the creator has no idea that they’ve paid someone to create fake followers, that creator’s account is still considered dishonest. And those creators will not be able to maintain good brand relationships.
How To Spot Fake Influencers
There are several ways to spot fake followers. The first and most obvious tactic is to visit the follower’s page. Many fake followers have just a couple of posts (often none at all) and don’t appear to be very active.
Fake followers usually don’t use pictures of real people in their profile pic or posts. If they do use pictures of people, they’ve taken them from somewhere else. You can perform a Google image search to see if a picture exists elsewhere.
Some suppliers use fake followers to post comments on a creator’s posts. This tactic tries to increase the creator’s engagement rate. However, taking a closer look at those comments usually exposes them for what they are. Fake follower comments are shallow (they might say something like “Awesome!” or “I like that”) and offer no real value. These comments often have glaring spelling or grammar errors due to suppliers not having a command of the native language.
Also, fake followers aren’t consistent. Typical engagement followers interact with creator posts somewhat regularly. But fake followers show a spike in engagement followed by an eerie silence.
Conclusion: Don’t fall victim to fake influencers. Recruit only the most authentic creators for your program.