Buying Facebook 'likes', Twitter 'followers' and 'fans'?

Get 10,000 fans / likes for just $100

5,000 unique Twitter followers for just $50

Buy your way to the top!

Just some of the headlines of email we’ve received in the past week.

Then there are the potential clients that approach us asking if we can ‘buy fans or followers’.

Well the answer is a resounding:

NO!

We can see why it seems a great idea. 10,000 people listening to your message, all added to your account within a week or so – before you know it you’ll have sales coming out of your ears, right?

WRONG!

See, think about it. How many of those 10,000 will be REAL people, waiting to read your message and interested in what you sell? The chances are, not many.

And how many alerts will you be triggering with your super fast growth? Probably lots – Twitter is renowned for closing down accounts that grow so rapidly, as it’s the classic hallmark of a spam account (which, incidentally, yours pretty much is once you start buying fans and followers instead of building your fanbase organically).

We know, it seems like a great idea – hardly any money gets you a huge potential audience.

But we’ll put it to you that if you think this is a great idea then you’ve not quite ‘got’ the idea of Social Media Marketing – it’s not about broadcasting to a huge audience, it’s about attracting the right kind of fans and followers, building your audience gradually, interacting with them and developing credibility.

Having 10,000 fans or followers is great (our own @nikkipilkington has 11,000+, built organically) but it’s not a short cut to untold riches, and it doesn’t mean you’re going to sell loads – it just means you bought a list that’s probably as useless as the $50 link campaign you considered buying last summer – and probably just as dangerous, in terms of the likelihood of being banned from Facebook or Twitter.

Have you bought followers or fans? Would you? We’d love to hear your opinion of this practice in our comments section below.

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About Nikki

Author of many 30 Day Blogging Challenges, Nikki spends her time helping small businesses with Internet Marketing and Social Media Marketing. With 17 years of experience, she hasn't yet found someone she couldn't help to get more business from their website.

Comments

  1. As much as $50! Have they not taken a look at ffiver.com? 😉

  2. Maybe we’re missing a trick here. I can see a way of getting rich: pay me 5 pence and I follow you 😉 …… and after I unfollowed you, you can pay me again!!!

  3. Couldn’t agree more. I think if you’re looking for fans on facebook, very specific niche ads are worth a go but you’re only going to get very slow growth – its not about numbers its about how engaged your audience are. Really word of mouth is the best way.

  4. Sonusingh 4367 says:

    Buying Facebook ‘likes’, Twitter ‘followers’ and ‘fans’?
    Thanks for share such nice informative information really very nice article ..
    .

  5. I think buying fans has it’s place in small doses, in general you are right, but I think especially at the outset it can give your page more credibility, good content/posts is always the best way in the long term but in general people are more likely to follow a page if 1000 are already following it rather than 3

  6. Completely agree with you Nikki. Surely better to have 10 followers that listen than 10,000 that have no idea who you are.

    I had a client that bought traffic – about 1m visitiors over 3 months. Yes the site reports looked good (well for 3 months) but as most were from Russia and China there were no extra sales.

    Worse still, it made trying to find where the REAL visitors were a lot more work than was necessary.
    Andover IT recently posted..Get Listed on Google – FastMy Profile

  7. Interesting that there is always a ‘fast buck’ on offer, I cannot see how buying the LIKES or Twitter followers works. I do understand the package on offer but not the point, as you so nicely say, how many of these ‘people’ are really actively following you or even remotely interested in your product/service/story? We are happily plodding along with our 100ish followers, as a new account I am happy with that, and most of all I am really enjoying the interaction with real people and their ideas and experiences.

  8. I appreciate your thoughts. However, I also feel that in the maddening commotion of ‘Like’ me from different pages/products, our target customers want some credible page/product to join into or like. Having a larger fan base serves as sort of word-of-mouth and proves to be reliable. I personally like this site for low commission credible work on facebook pages: <a href=”http://www.gigstrade.com/”>Buy Facebook Likes</a>

  9. Totally agree. It’s painful and slow-going acquiring likes/fans – but every fan should be organically gained (and even they’re not always the real deal – I have some very scantily clad ladies following me for some reason – they must be awful cold in this snow). It reminds me totally of when I worked in advertising in magazines – we competed on circulation to attract advertisers but some of the ways magazines ‘acquired’ readers via subscription deals etc were distinctly dodgy – resulting in numbers but a lack of ‘targeted’ and ‘product-appropriate’ readers. Our arguement was always that our readers were ‘self-selected’ ie they bought the magazine off the newsstand because it delivered answers they were actively seeking – and they were much more likely to then respond to the advertisements because they offered the products they needed to solve their problem and trusted the source. I wrote a blog post on this issue of audience trust at http://redkitecommunications.com/wp/facebook/why-your-facebook-and-blog-posts-should-be-like-your-favourite-magazine-your-favourite-magazine/ if you don’t mind me adding a link there Nikki.
    Some things don’t change, and you just have to accept that there are no shortcuts!

  10. Hmmm interesting and something I was writing about on my FB fan page this morning. In that recently I took part in a like ladder on FB. It’s free and it is a way to spread the word about what you do. However is it really that much different to paying for fans which I have never done. In a mad frenzy people go over and like your page, however are they really engaged or just hoping that if others do the same their brand will grow? That said in marketing it is all about building weak ties as well as strong ties. At best only 30% of your fan base is going to buy from you directly, the hope is that if they are part of your tribe then they will spread the word about what you are doing and draw other people in.

    Mari Smith, the facebook guru, suggests that the best way to build up your likes is not through asking people but through other people choosing to like your page and then their friends seeing that in their feed and so checking your page out as well. Therefore I am hoping that the surge in likes recently will bring my page to a wider audience and reach a number of people that really resonate with the content that might not have seen it otherwise.

    Whilst I have never endorsed buying likes on twitter or fb, I don’t think it is as black and white as your article suggests. My aim with this comment is to get us all asking more questions and really thinking about this issue.
    Kate Griffiths recently posted..Hello world!My Profile

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