Words by Shaun Troke
I recently learned there’s a book available informing the public how to gain a large Instagram Following…by CHEATING.
Back in a more pleasant age, the friendly routine – a Follow for a Follow – would be just that: someone Followed you, you Followed back, it was equal.
Now, though, those that Follow you first will often Unfollow you immediately afterwards, in order to increase their own Follower numbers, to make it appear as though they’ve a huge Following!
My hobby – The Travel Tab – has been up & running for a little over three months now, and during this time, since its beginnings, I have learned a great deal about how the Sales & Marketing people in the Travel & Media industries will mostly judge potential collaborators based on their amount of social media Followers…
And, I appreciate that these Sales & Marketing People have to promote their clients & products with whomever has the highest audience & reach, I completely understand that, I really do…
But, is it really correct to promote a product or a client with someone who has a false social media following…?
And, are the Travel & Media industries even aware of this corruption that’s taking place?
Following Vs Talent
From what I know and from what I’ve recently experienced, most Travel/Media industry Persons will ultimately choose to work with someone who has 10K+ social media Followers rather than someone with an actual talent & a smaller Following.
In today’s age, in a world where everyone has a camera & a laptop, and where (untalented) people believe they’re a director/camera-person, and where (untalented) people believe they’re a blogger/writer, these are the same people who are also ruthlessly growing their Social Media Following using the illegitimate Follow/Unfollow method, which in turn, is making them appear to be popular & ‘talented’….
Genuine talented People do NOT have to use the improper Follow/Unfollow method; Genuine talented People rarely crave attention or the limelight – their genuine talent will always attract a more natural, more sincere Following.
But, the problem is that these less talented People – the ones who NEED to cheat their way ‘to the top’ – are now the majority who oversaturate our social-media channels.
And, this then leaves the Travel/Media industry folk leaning toward quantity over quality!
Eradicating The Problem
There ‘s a couple of ways to spot a False Follower:
If the person has 1000’s of Followers yet they are Following only a minimal number of people themselves (say, around 200), question WHY this person would be Following you – unless you’re a celebrity, this False Follower really has no reason to Follow you, except to gain another Follower for herself/himself (from experience, if you don’t Follow these people back within 24-72hrs, they will Unfollow you anyway).
If the False Follower has an exceedingly low amount of Followers, but are Following 1000’s of people, this is also a sign of a False Follower – somebody has actually confirmed to me that this is a key method used in that ‘cheating’ book, that advises the upcoming Attention-Whore to Follow thousands of people, and then, whenever some of those thousands Follow back, they will Unfollow them accordingly.
Also, there’s many groups & companies all over the world who will Follow you, and then offer you a (paid) service that will help you people gain more Followers – again, by CHEATING – encouraging you to gain a Following the dishonest way…
This is why I’ve decided to begin offering a service that will go against this non-genuine behaviour: A service that will remove these cheaters from your own social media accounts (more about this service in the next section), because fortunately, I’ve figured out a way to monitor my social media accounts:
Every fortnight, I have a social media de-clutter. And, since starting The Travel Tab, I now Unfollow around 75+ people every fortnight, those who’ve Followed/Unfollowed me first…which, in just three months, already adds up to an approximate total of 450 accounts who have been ‘cheating’ their way on Instagram!
Twitter is a lot more easier to manage, but it took me a little while to figure out how to manage my Instagram accounts, and, Instagram is where I regularly subtract the most Unfollowers.
If someone Follows/Unfollows me within a week, I’ll instantly Unfollow them back, and send this little message to them, too:
“Thank you for the Follow & then the Unfollow.
The Travel Tab doesn’t agree with the Follow/Unfollow method that some may use to increase their number of Followers. As a result, we’ve Unfollowed you back, and in future, please refrain from following us again, should you be using this method of ‘cheating’.
If someone Follows/Unfollows me outside of the first week, I’ll simply just Unfollow them.
Random fact: I’ve noticed that Sunday is a popular day for people to Unfollow you.
Social-Media Subtraction Service
Have you also noticed that your own Twitter/Instagram accounts are continuously imbalanced, and that your Following numbers increase while your Follower numbers decrease?
My Social-Media Subtraction Service will only cost you £10 per 200 people you’re Following (e.g, if you’re following 1000 people, this would cost you £50). An advanced payment via PayPal would also be required.
All I would need is your account(s) Log In details, and, information about what you’d like to happen to these ‘cheaters’: I would either delete (and block) them for you, or, I can provide you with a list of the account names who’ve Unfollowed you, and you can then choose what action you’d like to take.
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The fact that there’s a published book available that tells people how to cheat a Social-Media Following can only vouch for everything I’ve ranted about in this article.
And, I hope many Travel/Media industry People see this blog, so they can wise-up & become aware of this problem that’s out there (and growing), because there’s just too many talentless people out who are robbing truly talented people of work opportunities.
Everyday I wish that I worked in an industry that excludes social-media, because I would love to walk away from social-media in a heartbeat, if I could; And, I wish I wasn’t so cynical about social-media. But, when I have to Unfollow 75+ people a fortnight – because those 75+ people aren’t genuine people – it’s now a huge problem that my work industries – and possibly yours – face on a daily basis.
Until this problem goes away (which probably wouldn’t be for a long time yet), I will continue my own fortnightly social-media de-clutter, to make sure I’m in no way encouraging this dishonest behaviour…
Because, what I do have are a very particular set of skills, skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you choose not to Follow/Unfollow me now, that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you choose to Follow/Unfollow me, I will look for you, I will find you, and I WILL Unfollow you!
If you’d like my Social-Media Subtraction Service, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with more details about your request.