Technology today gives us immense power to build a profile for ourselves that can be viewed and shared by millions. With that power comes the responsibility to be honest and authentic to your audience.
Those who use social media for marketing or personal gratification have one key metric to focus on: followers. The follower count is often one of the first things an individual will use to evaluate trust. If an account has thousands of followers, it must be worthwhile following, right? Well, not always. The ease and availability of technology today mean that billions of us have social media accounts.
And within those billions of active accounts, many are not exactly as they appear. Indeed, there is a growing trend of ‘fake’ social media accounts set up purely to bolster the following of others. Popularity builds trust, and those who want more social media followers and views will use any trick in the book. Convincing someone that they have a large following is a pretty easy way to do just that.
There are, of course, many ways to get more social media followers on every platform. From TikTok to Snapchat to Instagram, each major social media platform makes it easier for people to start following. One of the easiest ways to learn how to get more views on TikTok, for example, is to buy a following.
Is this wise, though? What are the pros and cons of making such a decision – could it come back to harm you later?
Getting more visibility will always help
One of the main benefits is that social media views will increase if you have more followers. People are more likely to ‘follow the crowd’ and follow an account with thousands of followers. It makes it easy for you to bring more people to your audience. The crowd will grow because others see you as popular; it does not matter how many of your followers are real or engage with you; people just see the follower count.
This means that by using the ‘fake’ accounts to get more visibility, more ‘real’ accounts start to follow you. That is very important as it means that the account you run becomes more organically popular by using the carrot of having lots of followers in the first place. Over time, this builds authenticity as more people begin to follow you, interact with you, and engage.
The reputational damage, though, can be hard to overcome
Of course, buying social media views and followers means you have one potential risk: being caught.
Tools exist that can be used to determine how authentic and real your social media following is. This makes you look like you are trying to pull the wool over the eyes of your followers by boosting your follower count. Many see accounts exposed as having lots of fake followers as either wilfully ignorant of the fact or implicit in creating false visibility.
That is a major problem and something that can be hard to live down and move on from. For that reason, you need to think very carefully before you go down the route of investing in followers and/or views. It might take longer to build an organic following, but it is more likely to provide dividends.
The quick fix of buying followers and views can get you a head start – but it can become a headache down the line if you are found out.
If you decide to take the ‘fast’ route to success, be prepared for the consequences should you ever be discovered.