You have a fantastic product or service, an eye-catching website, and now you’re ready to tackle social media. But let’s be honest, building a following from scratch takes time and effort. Enter the tempting world of buying followers. Thousands of “fans” with a single click—sounds like a shortcut to social media success, right? Wrong. Here’s why purchasing followers for Facebook and Instagram can harm your ability to connect with authentic customers.

Why Artificial Followers Are Not Good for Businesses

The main issue with bot followers is that these artificial accounts do not engage with your content, meaning your posts may not reach real and potential customers. Additionally, social media platforms are cracking down on fake followers, which could result in penalties for your business, such as decreased visibility or account suspension. Sure, your follower count might skyrocket, but these fake accounts aren’t real people scrolling through their feeds. They won’t like, comment on, or share your posts.

Remember, social media algorithms prioritize engagement—the more interaction your content gets, the more people see it. When there’s low engagement despite a large number of followers, it signals a problem to the algorithm, effectively burying your content and limiting its exposure to real customers. For example, if your business buys fake followers to boost your numbers, you may find that your posts are no longer showing up in your followers’ feeds or search results. This could lead to a decrease in website traffic, resulting in lower sales and a negative impact on your overall brand reputation.

How Fake Followers Hurt Your Advertising Efforts

Imagine you’re running a targeted ad campaign on Facebook. When you pay to reach a specific audience, you want to make sure your ad reaches real people who might be interested in your product. Having numerous fake followers makes it challenging for Facebook to identify your ideal customer, turning your targeted ads into a guessing game. This can result in wasted advertising dollars and a lower return on investment.

In order to effectively reach your target audience and maximize the effectiveness of your advertising efforts, it is crucial to regularly audit and clean up your social media following to ensure that you are reaching real, engaged users who are likely to convert. By focusing on quality over quantity, you can improve the performance of your ads and ultimately drive better results for your business.

The Benefits of Building a Real Community

Here’s the not-so-secret secret: building a loyal following takes work, but the rewards are immeasurable. Focus on creating high-quality content that resonates with your target audience. Consider running contests and giveaways to encourage interaction. And, most importantly, be authentic and engage with your followers directly. Although it may require more time, these authentic connections will be valuable and drive actual growth. It is better to have a smaller, engaged audience than a large, disengaged one.

By building a real community, you are creating a group of loyal customers who are genuinely interested in your brand. These followers are more likely to make repeat purchases, refer their friends and family, and become brand advocates. Additionally, a strong community can provide valuable feedback and insights that can help improve your products or services. So, put in the effort to nurture and grow your community, and you will see the benefits in the long run.

Over to You

Abandon the tempting trap of buying followers and instead focus on creating a vibrant online community where sincere relationships foster long-term success.

Here at MYOB, we understand the challenges of social media management for small businesses. This includes customized content strategies, targeted audience engagement techniques, and ongoing support to enhance your online visibility and engagement. Our experienced team of social media managers, with years of industry knowledge, can collaborate with you to create a content strategy that not only reflects your brand values but also captivates your intended audience.

What aspect of building a loyal following do you find most challenging? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments!

Written By: Jennifer Hanford, MYOB Blogger