One of the biggest problems on Instagram is fake posts and fake user accounts. You’ve probably come across a fake account or post even if you’ve spent any amount of time on Instagram. But may not have recognized any of the posts or accounts on Instagram as being fake.
The main reason for fake Instagram accounts is the importance placed on the number of followers an account has. And the difficult process of acquiring those followers organically. The individuals who buy fake accounts with high follower counts are simply looking for a faster way to measure up to the competition without putting in the work.
And they don’t just stop there. These fake Instagram users go on to create fake posts. Sometimes making up stories or more commonly—pretending to be someone they are not. There is a multitude of reasons why someone would create fake Instagram accounts and posts. In some cases, they are looking to scam their followers into making purchases of non-existent products.
However, one of the growing issues we have been seeing is when fake Instagram accounts with fake postings, stories even, are being used to dupe unsuspecting brands. In what way? By fooling these brands into thinking that these fake accounts are managed by genuine Instagram influencers who can help them promote their products and services.
Whatever the reasons are for people creating a fake Instagram post or even a fake Instagram account, it’s just important to remember that they are out there!
We are not going to cover the reasons why these folks resort to these scammy tactics. We’ll dedicate a future post to doing that. Instead, today, we’re going to teach you how to recognize a fake Instagram account and post when you see one.
The Effects of Fake Instagram Accounts on Businesses and Brands
Companies and brands that partner with influencers invest in the influencer’s platform and the level of trust that influencer’s followers have in them. A lot of companies are willing to pay top dollar to work with influencers who are relevant to their brand. And influencers with a large following in the hopes that this will result in a larger audience and an expanded customer base.
This means that businesses that are taken in by fake accounts with large follower numbers are effectively being scammed and losing out on their investment.
We want you to learn how you can avoid falling for these scams. So here are a few tips to help you recognize fake Instagram accounts and posts.
4 Tips for Recognizing Fake Instagram Accounts and Posts
These tips will help make you wiser for the next time you scroll through Instagram accounts. However, we’d like to remind you that there are some cases where an Instagram account or post may show all signs of being fake but they are 100% real.
So the best thing we can suggest is to first understand how to spot these fakers. Then use your own judgment as to how you wish to proceed.
Let’s say you’re a brand looking to partner with reputable Instagram influencers. But you come across what you believe to be a fake account based on what you will learn here. Then the simple approach is to completely skip past the suspect account. After all, if you think they’re fake, then chances are their followers will think they’re fake. So they would have very little chance of having any success promoting your brand and products.
Now get your pen and paper out. Here are the tips to help you spot fake Instagram accounts and posts.
1. Fake Bio: Take A Look At Their Account’s Profile Photo
Since fake Instagram accounts are usually trying to copy a real account and draw in followers they will make their profile photo a picture of an attractive man or woman often in a state of undress. They’re hoping that this photo will make the account seem more attractive and interesting to those who stumble upon it. However, if you take a look at their posts, the person from the profile photo will be nowhere to be found.
It’s not uncommon to also use pictures of models or celebrities, or not to have a profile picture at all as not all who make fake profiles bother to make them look organic. Another thing you should take a look at is the bio. It will often have unrealistic promises or an outlandish background story.
2. Fake Posts: Explore Their Instagram Feed
We’ve already mentioned that a fake account won’t have the person in their profile picture in any other posts. If they mention a profession in their bio, the posts usually won’t be related to that field. These disparities should be fairly easy to spot even from a quick glance through their profile.
If you want to go further into confirming whether the account is fake take notice of how frequently they post and the time frame in which the majority of the posts are made.
Since the people who make and build fake accounts with the purpose of selling them want to achieve their goal as quickly as possible, they will often make the account and share several posts in order to make the account seem populated. You will notice that their posts have very little activity and are often unrelated or even downright strange.
3. Fake Followers: Compare Their Follower/Following Counts and Their Activity Level
This is one of the best indicators that an Instagram account is fake. When you compare the number of followers the account has and the number of posts and stories they’ve shared you’ll notice a very unrealistic scenario. A profile with only 10 posts is very unlikely to have gained 10K followers organically.
Another thing to be on the lookout for is an extremely high number in the following category. Fake Instagram accounts will often max out the following feature at around 7,500.
4. Instagram Tools: Use an App to Spot the Fakes
There are many tools and Instagram apps that are created specifically for determining whether an account is real or fake. Most of these apps can be found for free or relatively cheap in your phone’s app store. These apps use statistics and authentication technology to verify whether an account is real or not.
If you’re a business owner and you’re uncertain whether an influencer you want to work with has a genuine following this is one of the best ways to make sure they’re the real deal.
Looking for influencers to join your affiliate program? HERE are tips from Affiliate Manager, Dustin Howes on how to get influencers excited for your affiliate program.