Digital Marketing Scams Part 1: Review, Click & Engagement Farms
Do you want to improve your brand’s visibility online and get more fans to follow and engage with you? Of course you do! What if we told you, it can be done, but it takes time, patience, experience, and lots of care? If your reaction is, “I don’t have any of that,” that’s okay. You are an expert at your business, not digital marketing. We’d expect you to outsource to a company or agency that can accomplish this for you.
But it’s important to do your homework before you hire! There are a lot of firms out there offering digital marketing services, but some are nothing more than sophisticated scammers. It’s easy to be dazzled by click fraud, shady metrics, and fake reviews, passed off as “results.”
Don’t get conned into wasting your money and time, and potentially get your profile banned from social media platforms. Instead, become informed about common digital marketing scams.
Review, Click, and Engagement Farms
The pitch: We’ve all seen them: Stories identified as “trending,” or products with several “glowing reviews.” Because you’re curious why so many are gravitating to this popular post or highly-rated product, you do the same. It’s the kind of traffic you want for your brand. So, you consider a service that offers to get thousands of likes and reviews for a relatively low price.
The scam: Their likes, shares, and followers aren’t real people. These services are, sadly, the internet equivalent of a scam factory. Rooms full of people setting up fake accounts to artificially inflate engagement numbers.
The truth: They take legitimate reviews you have on one platform and then create a fake profile on a new platform so they can duplicate the review. For example, they take a real review you have on Yelp and re-post it on Facebook using a fake profile cloned from your customer’s real name and picture. They will also use fake social media accounts to click “like” and post scripted comments on your Facebook and Instagram accounts.
Spot a fake: If you receive a friend request from someone you thought you were already friends with on Facebook, that’s a “farmer” at work. They are counting on a handful of people to accept the friend request from the clone to make the account appear legitimate, and in turn, useful for click farming.
The consequences: Fakes are easily spotted by savvy users. Your credibility will tank. Instagram will restrict or suspend your account if they suspect you’ve been “buying likes” or “buying followers.”
We can help identify the bad from the good
There are no shortcuts when it comes to digital marketing, period. We understand, however, that it may not be something you have time to do strategically and consistently. If you need help, we encourage you to ask us questions.
Before you pay good money for bad service, give us a call or send us an email. We are here to help!