How To Detect Fake Followers & Engagement


Influencer marketing provides brands with outstanding results and enables them to raise awareness and drive sales through a more organic setting. As influencer marketing becomes more popular with brands, influencer selection becomes more scrutinised and selective, with clients requiring more research and justification into the influencers taking part in a campaign.

On the flip side, the role of an influencer is becoming a more desired job title than ever before, and after seeing the success of  influencers such as Lydia Millen, Sarah Ashcroft and Danielle Peazer, they are many people who want the perks and recognition of an influencer without putting in the hard work, dedication and patience that the job requires. Ultimately, an influencer has to have the ability to influence people, building and nurturing trust in an audience in order for them to base purchasing decisions on their recommendations. We’ve provided some of our most valuable tips below to help you spot fake followers & engagement for your next influencer marketing campaign.

Look Out For ‘Unusual’ Numbers

Genuine accounts will tend to see a steady growth in their followers, with any sudden growths usually coming from brand reposts or viral content. If an influencer’s following suddenly increases and decreases over a small period of time with no real reason to justify it, it is most likely because they are buying followers. Similarly you should be looking at an influencer’s engagement rate. A good quality influencer will have an engagement rate of anything from 1-3% of their followers (e.g. an influencer with 100,000 followers should see around 1,500 – 3,000 likes/comments on their posts). If an engagement rate is any lower than this, it can be a sign that their following isn’t genuine and won’t produce useful results from your campaign.

Use Instagram’s Following Tool To Spot The Bots

If you haven’t discovered the following tool on Instagram yet, there are a lot of reasons why you should. Not only can you see the content that the accounts you follow are interacting with, you can also see who they are choosing to follow. If an account is following a large amount of accounts in one go, or accounts that aren’t genuine followers, they won’t have any influence over that audience.

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Check For Spammy and Irrelevant Comments

If you are engaging with influencer marketing, then you want to pick influencers who can deliver results and drive an interest in your brands, and a lot of that comes down to the interaction an influencer has on their content. Some account will use bots to create comments that appear to look genuine, but aren’t relevant to the post in question. Whilst these comments are technically engagement, they have no value to a brand that is looking for influence within a particular demographic.

At The Blogger Programme, we can take this hard work and time consuming process out of your hands and into ours, providing you with the very best, tailor picked influencers for your brand and campaign. If you would like to get in touch please email

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