We all know social media is a hugely valuable element of online marketing when it comes to building a customer base, search engine rankings, and brand recognition. As a major player, Twitter is one of the most important and popular social media networks frequented by users around the globe.
Obtaining a high number of followers is a landmark goal of many Twitter users. Getting those followers isn’t always easy though, which leads some innocent businesses to wander down the shady path towards the ominous castle black-hat, wherein lies the dark tactic of buying Twitter followers.
With a simple swipe of a credit card, you can obtain legions of your own mindless Twitter drones! To buy or not to buy? Let’s review the reasons for and against buying Twitter followers.
In this post, we’ll be looking at:
- Why You Should Buy Twitter Followers
- Why You Shouldn’t Buy Twitter Followers
- How to Buy Twitter Followers
- Where to Buy Twitter Followers
- How to Increase Your Twitter Followers Naturally
- Why Earning Twitter Followers Naturally is Best
Look Like a Boss: A Big Twitter Following Makes You Appear Important
Let’s face it, a lot of social media activity is already just thinly veiled narcissism. Those who give themselves a pat on the back when their newest instagram post gets 13 likes must certainly be temped by the idea of buying more Twitter followers.
Businesses have the advantage of labeling their self-promotion as branding, but ultimately it’s two sides of the same coin. There’s no judging here though – we’ve all felt the rewarding confirmation that comes with a retweet.
While boiling down the value of your online presence to a mere number on Twitter sounds ridiculous, there’s really no denying that one’s Twitter following, despite being a vanity metric, is often thought to correlate with a user’s importance. For clubs booking comedians or venues hosting bands, a high Twitter following can easily put you ahead of the competition. A large Twitter following shows promise and possibility – not just of a good show, but of bringing in more followers and fans in to see the show, and therefore bringing in more money.
Even if the followers are fake, the clout that comes with a high Twitter following is very much real. A boost in Twitter followers can transform a stand-up amateur into a professional comedian, a garage band into a rising star, a movie extra into fresh new talent, and a small business into an authoritative source. Individuals have even been hired for job positions as a result of their high Twitter following, since the number serves as a representation of how powerful your online word can be.
With fake followers it’s all a masquerade, so it really comes down to how long you can push the act or live the lie.
Related to the previous section, once real users see your Twitter numbers rising, they’ll be more likely to follow you as well. If someone claims to be an expert food critic but only has 23 followers, most will think that the only food they’re judging is their mom’s mac and cheese. If that number is more like 800 or 2,000, they become a considerably more reputable source – one that users will be much more likely to follow. This means your Twitter robot followers are actually generating real followers as a result of your imagined prestige.
Easier & Cheaper
It’s a heck of a lot easier to buy followers on Twitter than earn them. Gaining a real Twitter following takes time and effort – you need to consistently be sharing great content, posting hilariously witty remarks, or broadcasting the latest news.
You could put in all that effort… or you can grab your wallet and buy a militia-sized army of Twitter followers for less than a Starbucks Frappuccino. On Fiverr, where users provide various products or services (often web related) for only $5, marketers are promised as many 8,000 Twitter followers within 24 hours in exchange for an Abraham.
All The Cool Kids are Doing It
Start-ups, celebrities, and politicians alike have been known to buy more Twitter followers – it’s a fairly common practice for those who have something to gain from amassing a large number of Twitter followers in a short period of time.
According to the Fake Follower Check tool from StatusPeople, which claims the ability to determine how many of a user’s Twitter followers are fakes, 71% of Lady Gaga’s over 35 million followers are fake or inactive, along with 70% of President Obama’s nearly 30 million followers.
It’s Not All That Bad
If the President of the United States has fake Twitter followers, it can’t be all that bad, right?
While purchasing bot Twitter followers is against Twitter’s terms and white-hatters might scoff at the idea, it’s completely legal. One also has to question how corrupt buying Twitter followers really is compared with regular Twitter marketing practices like paying for a promoted hashtag – is it just a matter of splitting hairs?
Can You Even Call Them Followers?
You’re not really buying Twitter followers so much as mindless spam bots. You won’t have any interaction or engagement with these robo-accounts. Do you really want to be the sad kid who only has robots for friends – robots you had to buy?
It’s An Empty Number
All the fake Twitter followers in the world won’t do much to raise your Klout score. Social media influence scores tend to look at interaction and Twitter engagement rather than sheer numbers, so you won’t be getting any added SEO or influence bonus with the inflated metric. Those skewed Twitter numbers also make it much more difficult to properly measure social media ROI and the true effect of your social media efforts.
Is Buying Twitter Followers Safe?
There are a number of dangers associated with buying Twitter followers. Many of the sites that offer to sell you more Twitter followers are a scam – you may put up your hard earned cash and come away with absolutely nothing. Often these nefarious groups are simply looking to take advantage of businesses that don’t know any better, or are hoping to cash in on desperate marketers looking for a quick fix. Providing them with your credit card might not be the brightest idea.
Your fake followers could also end up doing damage against your real Twitter followers by hacking, phishing, and infecting real followers with link spam. Is it worth buying Twitter followers when you consider all the risks?
Public Humiliation & a Ruined Reputation
With tools like the Fake Follower Check tool, it’s pretty easy to discover who is desperate enough to buy friends.
While the high Twitter number may feel cool, your real followers aren’t likely to share your perspective, and you might end up a laughing stock and lose the few real followers you do have. Especially for businesses hoping to be viewed as industry experts, being caught cheating can do serious damage to your reputation.
While Twitter isn’t making huge efforts to clean up spam accounts at the moment, who knows what action they may take in the future. If Twitter does decide to clean up the spammers, it’ll be pretty embarrassing when your follower count drops by half.
All right, you understand both sides. If you’re still interested in buying…
There are a couple different approaches you can take for buying Twitter followers.
Buy Cheap Fake Twitter Followers: You can buy cheap Twitter followers, but the most economical Twitter services provide only fake bot followers. It doesn’t take Jack Dorsey to figure out that this profile isn’t real.
Buying Twitter followers cheap gets you faceless, bland bot accounts – these are referred to as generated followers. Pricier services provide Twitter followers with more finely polished profiles, with pics and bios filled out.
Buy Real Twitter Followers: If fake doesn’t float your boat, buying real Twitter followers is a preferred option, although it isn’t likely to be as cheap as buying fake followers.
You can buy access to real followers using Twitter follower software that searches through and finds Twitter users with interests similar to yours and automatically follows them, hoping that they will follow you in return. This process is referred to as buying targeted Twitter followers.
If you’re set on buying Twitter followers, here are some sites that sell them.
Fiverr: Search Fiverr for “buy Twitter followers” and you’ll immediately find a long list of sellers offering to provide you with anywhere from 100 – 15,000 followers in less than 24 hours. While the legitimacy of some offers is questionable, it doesn’t get much cheaper than this.
Fast Followerz: This group claims to provide real, active followers that regularly tweet, update, and are engaged. They also offer a Followerz Protection five-year warranty, guaranteeing the top-notch quality of the targeted followers offered.
FollowerSale: FollowerSale uses a credit system to encourage real users to follow their customers, providing live, active followers as a result.
Devumi: Devumi provides cheap followers, doesn’t require a password, and doesn’t make you follow anyone in return. They also offer credit card alternative payment methods like PayPal.
The best sites to buy Twitter followers from are those that provide targeted Twitter followers that are real and active. Stay safe by avoiding sites that ask for your Twitter password or unnecessary info.
If you’ve decided to take the moral high ground and not buy Twitter followers, don’t despair about missing out – there are plenty of ways to get Twitter followers naturally. These legitimate, earned followers are more valuable because you’ve built a relationship with them. These relationships will prove much more prosperous than those silly faceless egg accounts.
- Target Others in Your Industry: Getting the attention of big-name tweeters in your industry can do a lot for your reputation, so be sure to follow and interact with them. Just one retweet or mention from a well-respected industry leader can greatly increase your Twitter followers.
- Tweet During Peak Times: Tweet when your tweets are most likely to be seen – generally between 10 am and 4 pm.
- Link to and Promote Your Twitter Handle: Link to your Twitter handle on your blog, website, and other social media accounts. Put it on your business card, use it in your guest blogger bio, and announce it when you speak at conferences. The more you link to your Twitter handle and promote it, the more followers you’ll bring in.
- Share Something of Value: Make yourself a person of value by tweeting resources related to your industry, or just fun and interesting content. Also make sure to retweet the great content shared by others – this shows that you’re not just self-promoting and are actually interested in spreading quality information from a variety of sources.
- Hashtags: While you don’t want your tweets to be a messy glob of ###s, implementing some hashtags now and then makes your tweets easier to find and can help spread your scope while gaining Twitter followers.
Increasing your followers on Twitter naturally isn’t easy, but it’s worth it in the end. Just a handful of engaged, active followers is infinitely more valuable than hundreds of fake accounts that do nothing more than add to an ego-stroking number.
Buying Twitter followers harkens back to the old days of SEO, evocative of outdated black-hat logic that grows less fruitful and more damaging as an increasing emphasis is put on quality over quantity. Buying Twitter followers may provide some temporary sense of instant gratification, but the potential backlash of being found out as a liar or fraud can quickly undo any advantages and permanently destroy your reputation.
For small businesses, such growing pains are essential for character development –Twitter is a valuable space for businesses to test and hone their personality, be it humorous, technical, or offbeat. Brand persona and Twitter following grow together as a result. Discovering and becoming a power player in your niche is what really increases your Twitter following, and bypassing such steps results in a hollow brand trying to survive off a vanity metric.
So fight the good fight, earn your followers the old-fashioned way! Or don’t. It’s your call.
This post originally appeared on WordStream, and is reprinted with permission.