5 Ways to Spot Fake Instagram Followers

One of the biggest issues to do marketing on Instagram is the fake followers. Social media has created an expectation in which having a large amount of followers is famous or popular. Some marketers got trapped by this idea. After all, if they spend $50 to post a picture or a video on those account with 25,000 followers in specific niche, it sounds very good way to market. However, it may turn out all those followers are fake.

In fact, it is quite common to see fraudulent and spammy accounts on Instagram.

So why would people create fake accounts on Instagram? The reason is quite simple: having a high number of followers can create the idea that the brand is more relevant than they actually are. The money would be wasted if the marketers pay for these accounts for sponsor posts.

Ways to Spots on Fake Instagram Accounts

So how can the marketers spot on these accounts?

5 Ways to Spot Fake Instagram Followers by Tony Yeung, Toronto Social Media Marketing Specialist
Maybe pizza itself can have great engagement yet it cannot be fake!
  • Low Engagement

An account with high amount of followers but low engagement is one of the keys to show that the account has fake followers. If you see an account with 25,000 followers but only 3 likes per post, that account will be highly fake and should not be invested in.

As I own my Instagram account with 200,000 followers, I create a “question” post, such as a post with a question “where are you from?” to monitor the engagement with my followers sometimes. It turns of the post has over 300 comments with different kind of people around the world. On the one hand, I can some people that I have a large number of real followers on my Instagram accounts; on the other hand, I can monitor my account to check if any auto bots follow my Instagram account.

  • Nine or fewer photos on page

This one is tricky. I am not saying all accounts with nine or fewer photos on page are fake. Some people have just created their Instagram account and posted fewer pictures.

However, if the Instagram accounts with many followers yet it has less than nine photos on its page, then the marketers should better to skip it.

  • Sudden spike in followers

If the marketers see an Instagram account that has a sudden leap in the followers on its page, it is pretty odd. And, the growth, clearly, is not organic because the followers are phony.

  • The ratio: followers to following

Spam-bot accounts typically have a high ratio of people they follow to people following them. It is reasonable to have 1:1 follower to following ratio but fake accounts do not have such ratio.

  • Check individual followers

The marketers can check if the account has real followers with the following check: private accounts, different language, spammy username, such as lots of numbers in one username, and spammy comments.

5 Ways to Spot Fake Instagram Followers by Tony Yeung, Toronto Social Media Marketing Specialist
Well… you may not need to check most celebrity Instagram accounts…

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