February 3, 2022
While the act of buying and selling social media accounts is nothing new, we recently stumbled across an account on Instagram that was blatantly selling its account ownership over their stories and it got us thinking: what are the dangers in doing this, and why isn’t it more common?
Turns out, there are a lot of reasons brands and people shouldn’t do this. To save you the soul-searching, we’ve listed a few reasons as a warning:
It’s against network terms
Let’s start with the big one: it violates the network’s terms and conditions stating You can’t sell, licence or purchase any account or data obtained from us or our Service.
This includes attempts to buy, sell or transfer any aspect of your account (including your username); solicit, collect or use login credentials or badges of other users; or request or collect Instagram usernames, passwords or misappropriate access tokens.
There’s no way to know if this is closely policed, but we’d put money on the fact that if a large, profitable account were bought and sold, social networks wouldn’t turn a blind eye.
It monetises your audience
Yes, there is a place for brands and people to generate profits on social media. There isn’t, however, a place on social to do this without any audience loyalty or brand integrity. Buying and selling followers shatters the trust of audiences and if they get wind of it – they’re more than likely to exit stage left.
You may be asking how will they know? Which brings us to our next point.
Brand TOV won’t survive
As much as you tell yourself that audiences won’t pick up on a shift in ownership, it’s very unlikely without getting experts involved. Audiences are smart and they’re likely following a social account for a reason – be it the jokes that are told, the insights that are given or the people that intrigue them.
Even the slightest shift in tone of voice and consistency will sound alarm bells with your audiences. People crave authenticity and selling followers shatters trust.
If you’re looking to build your audience the right way, we can help. Drop us a note here.