Let’s Talk About Instagram


I know it’s been awhile since I’ve posted a blog and there are many, many social media marketing related topics I could cover. (Facebook is now ranking us, the latest Facebook scandal, or how to keep up with Facebook news just to name a few.)

But I’m not going to talk about that today.

Today, I want to talk about Instagram. More specifically, let’s talk about those Instagrammers that use the follow/unfollow technique. They drive me crazy!

If you’re not that familiar with Instagram or this particular move, let me first explain. Instagram users can create personal or business profiles and rather than ‘liking’ or ‘friending’ someone as you would on Facebook, you can ‘follow’ other profiles on Instagram. It’s the same concept essentially, just different wording.

Now that you have that concept down, let’s move on to the shady practice mentioned above. Essentially, an Instagrammer who wants to grow his or her follower count will go around and follow hundreds of other profiles. How do they do this? By taking advantage of the natural tendency to follow someone back.

Think about it for a second. If someone decides to follow you on Instagram, you tend to give them a follow back, right? It’s only natural. But these people don’t continue to follow you. As soon as you follow them back, they unfollow you. But you don’t get a notification from Instagram about this so you won’t know when it happens.

I haven’t kept official count of this, but it seems that this is happening more and more often lately. I figured I’d write up a little post about it so that if you’re new to Instagram, you become aware of this annoying tactic. In my mind, it’s just plain rude. I tend to be rather suspicious of anyone I don’t know that follows me on Instagram these days. Especially if they seem to have a disproportionately high number of followers compared to accounts they actually follow.

For instance, I won’t name names, but a musician found one of the Instagram profiles I manage and followed it. Her profile had 30,000 and some followers while she only followed some 1,000 or so. This was highly suspicious to me so I made a point to check back in 24 hours. Sure enough, after I followed her back she unfollowed me.

*insert eye roll here*

Maybe it doesn’t bother other people so much but it certainly gets under my skin. So if you are new to Instagram, please consider this a polite PSA to avoid this tactic. Grow your follower count organically or run some ads if you must, but don’t resort to shady tactics like this. Remember that social media is about being social, not tricking people into following your profile just to get some absurdly high number of followers.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Have you noticed this happening more and more frequently on Instagram? Does it bother you or do you just let it roll off your back? Drop a  comment below and tell me what you think!

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