Instagram influencer marketing is a new way to get the word out about your latest products and services. The power of influencers on Instagram has taken digital marketing by storm and many brands are jumping on the bandwagon to have influencers market their brand.
Unfortunately, as with any industry, there is an alarming rate of fake accounts that might be easy to fall for if you do not know what to look out for. Influencer marketing is an investment and it is an authentic way to reach your client base.
You need to choose an influencer that truly represents your brand and has a good reputation to accommodate your investment. Here are some ways to identify a fake Instagram account:
1- A low engagement rate
Social media is all about engagements, that is how people connect with an influencer or any brand with an online presence. Of course, the first thing you look at when it comes to influencer marketing is the number of followers they have.
You can recognize a fake account by taking note of how they interact with their followers in the comments sections and the number of likes they have. On a genuine account, the likes generally correspond with a large number of followers and on a fake account, you might notice a few likes.
The few likes are probably attributed to the fact that other fake accounts are probably following the fake account. Depending on your needs, you might need to work on a media studies assignment and require the assistance of a paper writer or an assignment writing help to complete your project.
There is also a rise in bot accounts where fake influencers buy likes and comments, and you can usually spot this by seeing that one post may have received 1 like while another (in a short space of time) has 100s of likes.
2- An inactive community
An influencer profile is generally driven by community engagement, and it is actually quite easy to gauge whether genuine conversations are taking place. Generally, active influencers uniquely respond to comments and queries.
Fake accounts are usually characterized by one-word answers and emojis and impersonal messages like a simple ‘thanks.’ Influencer marketing is driven by active engagement and not just a number of likes.
It is easy to spot a real account because they connect with a person and address the comment or question effectively. Conversation drives the likelihood of people coming back for more content and following what is happening on the account.
You will find that with fake accounts, bots are doing the liking and leaving irrelevant comments, which is simply bad for business! Many influencer accounts attract bots, but that does not mean that they are fake too, this is why it is best to analyze the account’s community as a whole.
3- Inconsistent numbers
You know when you are watching your favorite crime show and the detective has exhausted every possible avenue of investigation. Instead of his theory and logic, he/she would decide to follow something more tangible like money.
In the case of fake Instagram accounts, you need to follow the followers! Not literally, rather observe how their following is growing and their pattern. Sudden spikes in followings such as growing in 100s over a couple of days or one day is a sign of bot activity.
A sudden drop in followers may be a result of Instagram blacklisting the bot accounts they have bought to follow them. This is pure evidence that bot account reap no positive rewards. Some digital marketers may suggest using them for your own brand but it is a bad idea, and you probably need to fire that digital marketer.
There is no overnight trick in influencer marketing; growth in followers should reflect consistency and organic engagement.
4- You cannot find them on other social media
Now that you have your detective hat on, do some more digging to reach your target point. Google the influencer to see where else they appear because most influencers generally have a blog or website and a presence on other social media sites.
Influencers also have a good following on these platforms and find ways to expand on their Instagram content through them. For example, YouTube is perfect for longer videos, whereas Instagram only accommodates a few minutes of video.
Google is pretty much your friend when it comes to quickly identify whether someone is genuine or fake. Influencers are also big on collaborations, so if you cannot find them on other platforms, then it is highly likely that they do not exist. In digital marketing, media currency such as backlinks and mentions should also be taken into consideration.
Remember, a true Instagram influencer has the potential to grow your brand beyond Instagram and take the campaign to other platforms. An influencer has the ability to work beyond a single platform and earned media value in digital marketing space.
5- Inconsistent promotions
A key attribute of an influencer account is obviously the products and services which they promote. An authentic influencer would typically promote products that align with their personal brand. For example, some invested in beauty and make-up will promote make-brands and, perhaps, a dental brand that whitens your teeth.
The products may vary but somehow connect to influencer’s overall brand. Instagrammers specializing in the academic niche would typically advertise products like dissertation writing service and paper writing service.
A self-respecting influencer is highly selective in the brands they choose to promote and respect their audience by posting material that is of high quality.
You can also have a look at their tags to see what other Instagram accounts have posted about them. Remember, you are entrusting an entire aspect of your brand to the influencer, so you need someone that embodies the ethos of your brand.
How to vet an influencer
Now that you know how to look out for a fake account, let us talk about the steps you can take to successfully vet an influencer. No matter what you are looking for from your digital marketing campaign, we have created a checklist to help you find a genuine influencer.
Consider what you are trying to achieve for your brand, and how the influencer can respond. Are you looking for a wider reach or for people to know how to use your product or service, for instance? This means that you should look at how the influencer can help you achieve your goals.
Always ensure that the account is authentic and does not have an inflated following. You can observe their comments on promotion posts and the kind of influence their engagements have on people. Do they have the power to influence whether people buy a product or go and like a page?
Reaching out and making contact with the influencer is the best way to establish their authenticity. Ask for their profile or media pack to get a good idea of their rates and how they work, and how they can fulfill your expectations.
Ensure that they work within relevant areas where you want to market your product. It won’t be helpful to have someone with a large US following when you are looking to penetrate the European market. Generally, influencers also have a target market they focus on.
Analyze how they engage with their audience because they will be representing you. Simple things like etiquette matter to a client, and if an influencer is rude or short, this might be off-putting. At times, a client might even complain about a product to the influencer, observe how they respond in these situations.
Using platforms such as iFluenz can allow you to simplify the whole scanning process. On this platform, the 25,000 registered influencers are verified and regularly reviewed to ensure the quality and authenticity of their content, audience and engagement. Plus, only influencers matching your brand and criteria will be able to send you collaboration proposals.
A fake Instagram account is the last thing you need to waste your money and valuable resources on, so it is important to be thorough when conducting research. Before entering an influencer agreement, you have to ensure that you are entering a collaboration that will be successful.
Taking all the necessary steps is of utmost importance and you can even go as far as meeting the influencer in person. There are many ways to approach an influencer campaign to ensure that it is a winning success for your company, but the first step is ensuring that your brand is working with a genuine individual.
Justin Osborne is a writer at custom essay writing and assignment help, he loves to share his thoughts and opinions about education, writing and blogging with other people on different blogs and forums. Currently, he is working as a content marketer at best assignment writing service uk and best writing service.