Fake Followers and You: Why They Hurt You and How You Can Get Rid of Them
You spend a lot of time and effort carefully cultivating your followers on social media. You want followers who are interested in your brand and willing to engage with you, not mindless bots that seek only to pour out spam messages or artificially inflate follower counts. Fake followers aren’t doing you or anyone else any favors, and here’s why:
How Fake Followers Hurt You
Fake followers provide no real benefits. All they do is inflate your follower counts. However, those followers do not interact with you. They may not interact with anyone at all, and if they do, they can potentially share spam and other content that neither you, nor your other followers want to see. Followers that do not interact with you help to drop your engagement rate. If you have a large number of followers that are not interacting with you your engagement rate is low. Fake accounts don’t care how awesome your content is, they won’t look at it, and they won’t spread the word about your brand. Next time Facebook or Twitter comes along and gets rid of a bunch of fake accounts and you notice your follower or likes go down, don’t freak out! Say thanks, they are doing you a favor and getting rid of the followers you didn’t want anyway.
How You Can Get Rid of Them
You can wait for the sweeps of fake accounts that most social media networks do every so often, or you can be more proactive. Reporting fake accounts help everyone in the long run. No one joins a social media network to connect with fake accounts. If you find a suspicious account in your following you can block and report them to your social network, this helps the network zero in on suspicious accounts and take action against those who violate their Terms. Additionally some sites, like Facebook offer you the ability to block accounts from certain countries, or to only allow those in certain countries that you specify to find and like your page. This can help you zero in on your ideal customers and ensure only those fans you are actively targeting are going to be able to see your content, while at the same time denying countries that are typical favorites of fake accounts to see your content.
Ultimately, social media is about being social, with other real people. Fake accounts do nothing but artificially inflate your follower numbers while at the same time driving down your engagement rates. Fake accounts can follow or like your page through no action of your own, however one of the biggest causes of fake accounts is bough likes or followers. Don’t waste your time and money on followers that have no interest in you! You can be successful on social media, but only if you focus on your real fans.
Do you have any tips for dealing with fake followers? Share your tips in the comments!