Almost every Instagram user knows it is possible to purchase followers and likes for their account. Buying Instagram followers is tempting for many because the cost of doing so is relatively cheap. Many people dream of having a substantial audience where their posts receive dozens, hundreds, or thousands of likes, so spending a few bucks each month to gain hundreds of new followers seems like a quick fix.
However, the consequences of taking this shortcut can be detrimental to your brand in the long run. Buying Instagram followers is particularly risky if you have ambitions of becoming an influencer in your niche or are using the popular social media platform to promote your business or drive sales of your products and services. This article delves into why purchasing followers is risky and why building your audience organically is the best way to enjoy sustainable success on Instagram.
The Dangers of Buying Followers
The lack of genuine engagement is one of the significant downsides to buying Instagram followers. Purchased followers are often inactive accounts or bots, which contribute nothing to your content regarding comments, likes, or shares. Take the accounts of top rated online sportsbooks as a shining example of the downside to buying followers. These accounts want a vast audience to push their offers and generate sign-ups. However, inactive or bot accounts will never share posts, and there is zero chance of them ever signing up for an account, which is the ultimate goal of them being on Instagram!
Sure, some follower-buying services promise live accounts or followers that will like your posts, but these, too, are pointless because they are not genuine likes. Would you rather have ten genuine followers like, comment, and share your posts or 150 robots pretending to enjoy your content?
Purchasing followers has the potential to damage your reputation in a world where authenticity is crucial. Social media users appreciate transparency, so any attempts to artificially boost your popularity can result in a loss of credibility and the erosion of any trust they have in you. What else are you faking if you lie about your accurate follower count? How can genuine followers take anything you post seriously?
The algorithms social media platforms use are often overlooked by users, especially those willing to cut corners and buy extra followers. These algorithms are smart and can detect abnormal account activity, including sudden spikes in follower counts. Such irregularities can result in platforms limiting the reach of your content, hindering its visibility to a broader audience. They can also give temporary and permanent bans to accounts that purchase fake followers.
The Benefits of Organic Growth
Authentic engagement is the number one benefit of building your Instagram audience organically. Likes on your posts become meaningful because someone genuinely enjoyed your content, while receiving a comment from a real person can provide a significant confidence boost. Furthermore, genuine followers are more likely to share your content with their authentic audience, making it possible to see an influx of like-minded people discover you, thus increasing your follower count.
Unlike purchased followers, an organically grown audience is likelier to stick around. Social media followers are a loyal bunch and will remain followers for as long as you post content they like. This longevity contributes to sustained success over time. Nothing stops your purchased audience from unfollowing you or having their accounts closed by the platform for being bots that take up valuable server space.
Instagram users who focus on organic growth are encouraged to create high-quality, relevant content that resonates with their audience. This dedication to quality naturally attracts more followers and enhances your brand’s image and authority within your niche. A lack of engagement from a genuine audience allows you to refine your content because it evidently didn’t sit well with them. Purchased followers will like anything you post, so you’ll never know if your content is good or not.
Tips for Organic Growth
Growing an Instagram audience slowly but steadily is the way forward, but how do you do it? Consistent posting is your first port of call. Regularly sharing content that aligns with your brand and resonates with your audience is crucial. Try sticking to a posting schedule, but don’t spam your followers with dozens of daily posts. Consistency builds trust and keeps your followers engaged.
Engaging with your audience is a surefire way to create a sense of community, which is proven to attract and retain followers. Respond to comments, ask your audience questions, and participate in conversations. People want their voices heard, so give them what they need.
Consider collaborating with other accounts in your industry to expand your reach. You will unlikely be able to collaborate with an NBA or NFL superstar or a Hollywood A-list celebrity, but there are popular accounts across every niche. Such collaborations expand your reach and do so to an audience that already has similar interests as you. These collaborations often lead to mutually beneficial growth.
Lastly, the strategic use of hashtags cannot be underestimated. Hashtags allow users to search for content relevant to their interests. Add hashtags that describe the content you shared, and research popular hashtags in your niche.
In a world where millions seek instant gratification, purchasing Instagram followers is tempting and seems like an excellent idea. However, as you have just discovered, the risks associated with buying followers far outweigh the benefits.
Choosing to walk down the path of organic growth does take time, but the rewards of authenticity, engagement, and long-term success are worth the effort. Stay true to your brand, connect with your audience, and watch your Instagram presence grow organically.