Social media’s importance in marketing efforts cannot be understated, but many business owners choose to focus on the numbers. While yes, it is important to see results from your social media efforts, the numbers you are focusing on just might not be the best ones.
In most cases, this means the number of followers, the amount of engagement, and the number of leads from social media content. Most people associate a large number of followers with success.
How you get those followers is a better show of your success. Buying followers using bots is NOT the way to increase your number of followers.
Social Media Credibility Means More
As Voltaire once said, “with great power comes great responsibility.” And you thought it was Uncle Ben from Spiderman.
Just because you have a large number of followers does not mean you have the credibility. Most social media platforms recognize and remove bots and your real followers will notice.
It’s more effective to earn your followers and demonstrate your credibility with knowledgeable content. Content can come from a variety of places, but knowing what your followers want and interact with the most can help you and your business know what to focus on.
If your audience is not reliable, such as is with bots, your content might not be as diverse or focused as your audience wants.
This chart from Influencer shows a Like-Follower ratio by account size. The smaller the account, the better the ratio is because followers are engaging with the content. If your ratio is too high, say, 15% on an account with 50,000 followers, your real followers are going to notice that you have fake followers.
Social Media Engagement Rules
What is the point of having many followers if they are not engaging with your content? The only engagement that bots and spam accounts may provide is spam and inappropriate comments.
Which would you rather have, 10,000 fake followers or 100 real followers that engage with your business?
Large numbers of followers may sound appealing and might look impressive to the untrained or unknowledgeable eye. However, this large number will eventually decrease back to your previous amount, which includes real people that may or may not interact with your content.
Your real followers will notice if your follower count decreases drastically. A quick loss of followers can result in your business losing credibility. The real followers, you know, humans, will wonder if something happened to tank your numbers and consider bailing on you.
This chart shows celebrity and athlete accounts and the total number of followers per account. You can also see the percentage of fake followers, which, is way too high. But because they’re celebrities, it’s less noticeable. Now imagine these numbers on a smaller scale; it’s much more noticeable.
Show me the Money
Businesses use social media to turn their target audience into leads, effectively increasing their paying customers. Fake accounts and bots will never become leads.
Organic social media and paid advertisements are great ways to increase your business’ presence and reach a larger audience.
However, if all or a majority of your followers on social media are bots, the message you share on social media will be lost. Bots will not interact with your content and therefore can never turn into leads.
Businesses use social media to bolster other marketing efforts; it is a great way to connect directly with your audience. And social media can work as an amplifier, getting your useful content out to as many in your target audience as possible.
Just Say No to Buying Followers
While buying followers may be the quicker and “easier” option, it has more negative outcomes than positive.
If someone tells you that they had success buying followers, they failed to mention that their success was short term. It probably looked great to have hundreds of thousands of followers but the engagement, and therefore ROI, is not there.
Put in the time to engage with your real followers and post engaging and creative content. Karma always has a way of coming around to those who buy fake followers.