I’m not what they call a ‘Twitterholic’ – I think I only cracked the 30 followers mark the other day. But I do spend a lot of time working with it, and I’ve started to pick up on the underhanded tactics of some of the bigger Twitter profiles…
In these social times, the amount of Twitter followers you have has a heavy influence on your social standing, but as I recently learnt, this isn’t a trustworthy measure of popularity.
While fluttering around Twitter the other day, I noticed that an agency I follow suddenly had a huge Twitter following – we’re talking a 5,000 people plus increase.
Why try when you can buy?
Interested at the sudden increase and all the new followers, I took a closer look to see what on earth this company could have been tweeting that ± 5,000 people would follow them in one day! And then I found my answer about 6,000 followers in: they’re all lingerie models, and even Tara Reid was following them under a pseudonym – it’s amazing!
Of course this was obviously the result of the Twitter phenomenon of businesses buying followers…
After doing some investigation, I found many websites on the net that sell you followers at a minimal fee, depending on the type of followers you want. If you just want the basic Twitter egg follower, expect to pay about £10 per 1,000. The more ‘upperclass’ followers, like the blonde models, are about £15 per 1,000.
The price of fake Twitter profiles
But what does this actually do for you besides making your Twitter following look unrealistic? Let’s be honest – nothing.
Our approach has always been to create an organic following of like-minded people who actually care about what you have to say. For example, we recently tweeted a download from our site through Mike’s profile, and instantly we saw about 7 downloads.
Now Mike’s profile has around 10,000 followers; the profile in question retweeted this to their almost 20,000 followers – and there wasn’t a single response.
The truth is, these bought followers are usually dummy or dormant profiles.
So what is the point?
A quick look at these profiles reveals that most of them have never tweeted, have thousands of follows, but hardly any followers.
A healthy profile will have a good balance between followers and follows, and also a good tweet rate. A big following isn’t necessarily important when it comes to influence; it’s about who is following you – it’s the quality of your following that makes you influential.
You may only have 400 followers, but if your followers are important in your area or line of work, and they’re engaging with you regularly, then you have a great deal of influence.
The point here is that people make a choice to follow you; it’s important that in any industry, you build a following who are interested in what you have to say.
Fake it till you make it?
It’s the people (read individuals) that have decided to follow you that are important.
Buying Twitter followers is like hiring a ferrari and rocking up to your High School reunion – seriously, just don’t do it. Those who fake it to make it on Twitter have missed the point completely.
It’s crazy to think that up to 46% of the Twitter followers of companies could be fake profiles generated by bots. Basically, unless you’re in the league of the celebs below, your massively inflated Twitter following is just going to look ridiculous.
Highest followings on Twitter
- Lady Gaga – 26 million
- Justin Bieber – 24 million
- Katy Perry – 22 million
- Rihanna – 21 million
- Britney Spears– 18 million
- Barack Obama – 17 million
- Shakira – 16 million
- Taylor Swift – 15 million
- Kim Kardashian – 15 million
- Youtube – 14 million.