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How to Spot Fake Instagram Influencer Accounts

Fake Instagram Influencers are rife these days, and it can be really difficult to know if they're real or fake. If you're a brand considering spending money investing on influencer marketing, this guide will help you determine if any individual account is worth it. Often, PR marketing agencies might also not know whether an influencer is real or fake, but this guide will show you what tools to use to determine it for yourself.

What is a Fake Instagram Influencer?

A fake instagram influencer is (in most cases) someone who sets up an Instagram account with the goal to scam brands into paying them to "promote" a product or service.

Why do people create fake accounts?

The advertising and marketing industry is adapting fast, to the surge in popularity of platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest etc. See below Goggle Trends snapshot showing how influencer marketing compares to traditional TV advertising over the last 3 years.

These trends mean that $ billions are being spent on influencer marketing, and people want a piece of that pie! Sometimes, so much so, that they're willing to create fake accounts to scam you into believing they can provide serious reach in a particular niche.

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Check out our blog on How to Create a Media Kit

6 Obvious Red Flags to Spot a Fake Instagram Influencer

These are 6 very obvious signs that an influencer account is fake. If you are already familiar with the basics, jump to 6 in depth ways to spot a fake instagram influencer

1. Lack of posts

Your average Instagram user might not have many posts, but we're talking about Influencers here. This is either their job or serious side hustle - never invest in an influencer that doesn't show consistency of posting regularly. 

2. Lack of personal bio

Not to say that their bio should be an essay explaining their whole life story, but influencers tend to have a unique and to the point bio which reflects who they are and what they're all about. If a bio is empty - red flag.

 

 

3. Follower vs following count

An Instagram Influencer is a be definition, a person with an influential presence on the platform. There are different tiers of influencers, and they don't need to have millions of followers to have value. We're not concentrating on number of followers here because it is very cheap and easy to buy fake followers. We're looking at followers vs. following. If the account follows more accounts than are following them, this is a huge red flag.

 

Infact, if they are following more than 1,000 other accounts, they are probably fake and have a bot doing following/unfollowing for them - watch out for this.

4. Previous collaborations

Don’t worry if you haven’t worked with anyone before, just add them to your media kit as you go along. This is a great way to showcase the work you have done before and demonstrate your creativity.

 

↠ Top tip: It’s also a good idea to ask for testimonials from people you have worked with before – this increases your credibility and makes you more attractive to collaborate with.

 

 

5. Visual Content - consistency

Here is your chance to state clearly what services you are offering (a blog post, an Instagram post, stories, giveaways etc.) and how much you charge for each.  It’s great to include it in here as many brands may potentially try to ask you to promote them in exchange for free products, especially when you’re just starting off – having a collaboration fee page makes it clear that you’re not willing to accept ‘free’ gifts in return for a post. This is up to you to decide though

 

 

1. Niches - products that relate.

A great design goes a long way when it comes to your media kit. Make sure to include lots of your content, photos, graphics or even charts. The more visually appealing your media kit is, the greater the chances a brand is willing to properly look through it and consider you as a potential partner.

 

6 In Depth ways to Spot a Fake Instagram Influencer

These are 6 very obvious signs that an influencer account is fake. If you are already familiar with the basics, jump to 6 in depth ways to spot a fake instagram influencer

1. Niches - products that relate.

2. Quality of followers

3. 

Branding is very important and first impressions count, so  start your cover page well! Your brand name portrays who you are, your personality and values. Your name should be the first thing on your media kit.

2. About Us section

Who you are, your niche and your interests are all important to discuss in your ‘About Us’ section, to give a little bit of background about whether you align with that particular brand you are pitching to. Put across when you first started your page, why you started, what topics you are interested in, what keeps you going, what makes you stand out and how easy you are to work with. Sell yourself! It’s great to include a photo of yourself here as well so brands can put a face to the name.

 

 

3. Audience profile, demographics and page insights

Brands will want to work if you if your audience profile fits with their target audience, so make it clear to them.

Key data to include here:

  • Follower count/traffic

  • Location of your followers and proportions  

  • Age range (18-24? 25-34? 35-44?)

  • Gender

  • How many impressions do your photos/blogs/videos get?

  • What is your reach?    

  • Individual post insights – you could include screenshots here

  • Your growth

 

↠ Top tip: When you switch to a business profile on Instagram, you’ll find this under the Insights tab of your account. You’ll also have individual post insights which are useful to include in your media kit.

For your website, use GoogleAnalytics to get more insight into your website.  

4. Previous collaborations

Don’t worry if you haven’t worked with anyone before, just add them to your media kit as you go along. This is a great way to showcase the work you have done before and demonstrate your creativity.

 

↠ Top tip: It’s also a good idea to ask for testimonials from people you have worked with before – this increases your credibility and makes you more attractive to collaborate with.

 

 

5. Visual Content - consistency

Here is your chance to state clearly what services you are offering (a blog post, an Instagram post, stories, giveaways etc.) and how much you charge for each.  It’s great to include it in here as many brands may potentially try to ask you to promote them in exchange for free products, especially when you’re just starting off – having a collaboration fee page makes it clear that you’re not willing to accept ‘free’ gifts in return for a post. This is up to you to decide though

 

 

1. Niches - products that relate.

A great design goes a long way when it comes to your media kit. Make sure to include lots of your content, photos, graphics or even charts. The more visually appealing your media kit is, the greater the chances a brand is willing to properly look through it and consider you as a potential partner.

Conclusion

Hope this has helped answer your question on how to create a media kit, let us know if you have any other questions, we’d be happy to answer them.

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