Building a Facebook audience is never an easy task.
We’ve previously outlined ways to grow a social media audience through the five P’s.
But there was one practice we didn’t mention – purchasing Facebook Likes.
Is it a worthwhile investment to pay for a Facebook audience?
There are two ways this can be done: Buying fake Likes through a third party click farm, or by running a targeted campaign with paid Facebook advertising.
Both methods have their detractors. For obvious reasons, the first practice does nothing but create the perception that a Facebook Page is followed by large numbers of people. But the reality for businesses that choose to go down this path can be quite different.
In a recent article, the ABC spoke with Rahul (not his real name), a click farmer based in Delhi.
For as low as $300, a click farmer can significantly grow the fan base of a Facebook page within a day.
“We create them through programs but all the profiles are just for show. You can go to a profile and check it, out and all the photos and the videos are fake,” said Rahul.
A purchaser of Facebook followers is effectively buying nothing.
The downsides don’t stop there because bought Likes dilute the reach of content to fans.
In a growing trend that frustrates all social media marketers, Facebook’s algorithm severely limits the amount of people who see posts on their News Feed.
If a large number of followers are fake the likelihood of real followers viewing organic content will be even slimmer.
The damage can also spread to potential customers.
A customer could go to a page and see a large number of followers, but little or no engagement. This may lead them to question the credibility of the page and potentially move onto a competitor.
Facebook users are savvy and not easily fooled by large amounts of followers. Quantity does not equate with quality.
And quality is one of the most vital aspects for growing a Facebook audience.
If the content is informative, educational and fun, most audiences will respond.
More active approaches can also help grow a Facebook audience.
Inviting an email database to join a Facebook page can garner a huge response and growth in Likes.
Better yet, these are real people who are already engaged with a business.
Using Facebook’s advertising feature is also a very effective method.
Specifically, the Promote Your Page option, which creates an ad that invites Facebook users to Like a page.
“Facebook may be a vast sea of people, but that doesn’t mean that marketers need to search the waters blindly,” said Web Marketing Director Peter Roesler for Inc.
These ads can be targeted to a specific audience, based on factors such as location, age, gender, behaviours, interests, profession and relationship status.
Effective targeting can potentially see a massive spike in engagement from Facebook users who are more likely to become customers.
As Roesler sums up: “When the right people see the right message at the right time, then advertising is usually effective,”
Growing an audience on Facebook takes time and planning.
However, buying Likes from foreign click farms is never the answer.
Perhaps New Media Manager Anna Gonzalez says it best about purchasing Likes, “If you’re still not convinced, let me ask you one final question: Can fake likes purchase your product?”
Have you ever bought Facebook Likes? What was your experience? Comment below.
And if you have any more questions on building your Facebook audience, please contact one of our Social Media experts.
- What is Social Media Marketing?
- Top Social Media Marketing Trends 2015
- 8 Reasons Why Facebook Ads Should be on Your Radar
- Forbes – Create a Facebook Page that Gets “Likes”
- Melwater – Easy Ways to Get More Facebook Likes for Your Business Page
- FBAdvanced – Innovative Ways to Get More Facebook Fan Page Likes