Food Bloggers: Don’t Buy Followers, & Here’s Why!

Twitter Followers for Sale

You’ve been blogging and tweeting about food, and you are getting frustrated because you aren’t getting very many followers. You see a Twitter account that guarantees followers for a really cheap price, and you are tempted to buy some. Don’t do it.

There are people who claim to be social media marketing professionals, yet they buy or sell Followers, RT’s (retweets) & Favorites on Twitter. Professionals don’t do that. When I see those accounts following me on Twitter, I immediately “Block” and report them to Twitter; and, I hope you are doing that too! Why? I have five reasons:

1. They are giving false impressions to the public about what social media professionals actually do, versus what can be achieved through intelligently constructed social media strategy and campaigns;
2. They prey upon business owners or professionals who are not internet savvy, and it discourages people from using any credible social media marketing in the future, when those incredible follower numbers don’t translate into actual sales;
3. Those kinds of followers are often bot (fake) accounts that will dilute your social media credibility scores;
4. You will never get any engagement from accounts like that, which is the key to building your following and brand loyalty; and,
5. The most important reason comes from Twitter** itself:
   “Twitter strictly prohibits the purchasing and selling of account interactions on our platform. When you purchase followers, retweets and favorites, you are often purchasing bot (fake) or hacked accounts. Any account caught participating in this behavior will be in violation of the Twitter Rules and may be suspended.
     A. If your account is found to have purchased followers retweets or favorites, your account may be suspended.
     B. If your account is promoting the selling of followers retweets or favorites, your account may be suspended.
     C. If your account is set up with the sole purpose of selling followers, retweets or favorites, your account may be suspended.”

I have never purchased a single follower, and I never will. I have worked a few years to get the nearly 15,000 that currently follow me on Twitter. When I get new Followers, I personally look over the profile summary and some posts in each account before following them back. And I don’t follow back every account, just the ones that appeal to me for personal reasons. I also regularly go through and stop following the accounts that have not been active for a couple months, post something I find offensive, or have turned out to be a spammy follower. (I make an exception and keep certain favorite culinary stars I love, who don’t tweet on a regular basis.)

What about those people with tens or hundreds of thousands of followers? I have news for you, unless you are a star in music, movies, television, or have a Verified* account as a subject matter expert, you really shouldn’t expect to have outrageous numbers of geniunely interested and engaged Followers. The typical non-celebrity or unrecognized subject matter expert who has those outrageous numbers of followers, most likely has a large number of fakes and low Klout or Kred scores for social media influence. If you want, you can check for yourself for free, by typing in a @TwitterName at the sites linked to words underlined in the previous sentence. These sites are not perfect, but they can give you a general measurement of a Twitter account’s social media influence. Remember that when measuring fake followers, the site at the link also counts those followers that you don’t follow back or want as followers. [Note: This is neither a paid endorsement, nor am I a paid subscriber to those sites.]

If you watched “Dancing With The Stars” and saw “Blue Collar Comedy Tour” comedian Bill Engvall voted back on week after week, you would think he had millions of followers, right? Currently, @billengvall has 130,698 Followers, and he had even less Followers when he was on Dancing With The Stars! It goes to show you how a smaller following of loyal fans is much stronger in the real world, and in socal media. In fact, I know of many Twitter accounts with much less than a thousand Followers, that have much stronger social media influence scores than many so-called influencers with over 250,000 Followers. The higher influence scores mean you are better able to not just promote a topic, event, or product, but also to motivate people to action – – which translates into sales. So get out there and do it like you would the old-fashioned way in person – –  engage people online to get quality Followers!

To see my daily social media interactions: follow me as @Ms_Terree on TwitterFacebook
For strictly food-focused social media: Gonzo Gourmands Facebook page, “The Frugal Foodie Show” for Cooking Network Club on Blog Talk Radio, or my Frugal Foodie Daily Newsletter.

*Verified account – https://support.twitter.com/articles/119135-faqs-about-verified-accounts
**Twitter Terms of Service https://support.twitter.com/groups/56-policies-violations/topics/237-guidelines/articles/20171870-fake-engagements-on-twitter

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