Social media marketing has become more prevalent than ever in recent times. Influencer marketing is said to be one of the most impactful tools of social media marketing.
Influencer marketing is when advertisers communicate a marketing message or brand image/awareness to the audience through a social media celebrity or an influencer. An influencer quite literally means a person or an entity that can influence you. However, with regards to advertising, influencers are the feeling heads of online media.
Social media influencers usually have a very strong agency over the opinions and preferences of their followers. Over 70% of people have admitted to relying more on influencers than mainstream celebrities. This has made influencers a fantastic ground for marketing communications.
Investing in an influencer marketing strategy takes money, time. efforts and several PR activities. An influencer, in the way they market your products can make a huge difference. Often, the influencer carries forward their face-value and reputation to your company. This is why influencer marketing creates trust for a product quickly.
Why Influencers Accumulate Fake Followers
Influencer marketing is not just something that benefits the brands. It benefits the influencers just as much. Marketing and endorsing is the major source of income for most of the influencers. So influencers look for brands just as much as brands look for influencers. This often leads to desperate creators/influencers turning to unethical practices to attract the brands. These practices are so prevalent among the influencers that 63% of advertisers admitted in a survey that they have experienced influencer fraud personally.
Almost 20% of kid-level influencers with a follower base ranging from 50000 to 100000 are most likely fraud cases. Due to this unethical practice of accumulating fake followers, many advertisers lose the money that they invested in influencer marketing.
Picture credit- taggermedia.com
To prevent this from happening, you have to be an expert at detecting fake-followers on influencer-accounts. So here are five tried and tested ways by a leading influencer marketing agency in India – Confluencr, to detect fake followers before selecting a certain influencer to market your products-
1. CONTENT TO FOLLOWER RATIO
On social media, growing a huge follower-base takes a lot of time. Influencers make content after content before they have gained enough followers to attract a brand.
So as a brand if you are attracted to a certain influencer based on their follower-base and estimated reach, then reconsider. Look at the number and quality of the content that they have posted and compare it with their number of followers. If you cannot justify the number of followers after considering the number of content, there might be a chance that this influencer has accumulated fake followers. It takes time to grow a significant follower-base.
2. THE GIBBERISH COMMENTS –
This is one of the most fool-proof ways to detect fake-followers in the account of social media influencers. Influencers who know how the Instagram algorithm works will use their knowledge to find loopholes in the system. If a post has more than a certain number of comments, Instagram assumes that the post is being liked by the people and hence increases the engagement of the content (and influencer) by recommending the content to users.
Hence, they use Bots or fake accounts to fill their comment section. Most of these comments do not make sense and are just random alphabets or figures. So if you spot an influencer that has random gibberish filled in their comment section, there is a very high chance that the influencer has fake followers.
3. FOLLOWER ENGAGEMENT –
We already talked about the influencers with a huge follower base with not enough content in their account for the numbers to make sense. Another related method is to check the follower-engagement under the posts. Meaning, if an influencer has millions of genuine followers, it must mean that there will also be relevant and abundant engagement from the followers.
Presenting consistently permits you to take a greater chomp of your crowd’s online media presence. This heightens your impact over individual adherents and positions you higher than the influencers with devotee armed forces, according to a brand.
Picture credit: www.confluencr.com
Like apparition adherents that simply increment a client’s supporter check, unpredictable influencers develop their phantom after. Users forget about them the minute they follow them and positively don’t get affected by their very rarely appearance
However, if you find an influencer account with many followers and yet not enough engagement, it can mean that the followers are merely numbers bought for money.
4. FACELESS FOLLOWERS –
Another common thing among fake followers is that they are mostly faceless accounts. It is fairly easy to detect a fake account just by taking a quick scroll through the follower list of the influencer. If you see a huge number of accounts that look inactive or without a profile picture or any posts in their account, there is a high chance that these are fake accounts that only exist to reflect as numbers on the accounts to favor the face-value of a creator.
It may stun you that this size of following is so ordinary, yet brands should realize that there are approaches to purchase fake followers or to get fake followers for free. Some of these Instagram users access fake followers to boost their follower count and to request more power than they are.
For those brands that work with influencers, checking for fake followers is basic while picking an influencer to join forces with your image.
5. PAST PROMOTIONS AND ENDORSEMENTS BY THE INFLUENCER-
This is the easiest way to detect whether or not an influencer is worth investing in for influencer marketing. Try and find out the past brand-engagements and collaborations of the influencer. If you spot an influencer with a huge fan base and yet no reputed endorsement records, the influencer may have already been assessed and rejected by all the other brands due to influencer fraud. Although it always helps to verify the authenticity of an influencer’s follower base.
So these were some of the easiest and fool-proof ways to detect and save your investments from influencer-fraud.
Guest article written by: Shweta Singh. I am an aspiring Lawyer and a Content Writer. I believe that every business has a story and I thrive to tell that story to the world through my writing. I have been writing for influencer marketing for a long time for www.confluencr.com and have grown exponentially with the industry. With Confluencr, I have learned that quality content + targeted marketing can do wonders not only for businesses but for any individual. Links: Email Id: [email protected]
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