Dear Social Advisors,
I’ve started up a new business and I’m trying to build a Facebook presence for my company. I don’t have a lot of money to spend on Facebook ads or boosting posts. Should I buy Facebook Likes so my page looks more credible to visitors?
Terry H., Daytona Beach, Florida
Buying Facebook Likes is about as useful as drawing a six-pack on your stomach. It may LOOK really impressive, but it’s still fake (and it won’t stick around for the long run). We don’t recommend it.
With bought Likes, you’ll have a big following, but your followers will give you little to no engagement. When the State Department spent $630,000 to increase its Facebook Likes, the Likes skyrocketed from about 100,000 to more than 2 million users. However, of all those users, only about 2 percent actually Liked, shared or commented on the page’s content. Most people visiting YOUR page probably won’t get easily tricked by your large number of Likes when they see the lack of engagement on your posts.
When you have a large number of followers but no engagement, it messes up your EdgeRank on Facebook. EdgeRank is the algorithm that Facebook uses to determine what articles should be displayed in a user’s News Feed. It is based on the number of page visits you have, your comments, content Likes and shares. If your page followers aren’t interacting with your page, your EdgeRank score will plummet and, in the eyes of Facebook (and consequently, your fans), your page will be deemed unimportant.
Terry, the question you have to ask yourself is this: Do you want to fake your popularity for short-term success, or do you want to grow a genuine online presence for your brand and a community that REAL people want to be a part of?
Thanks for your question, and stay tuned for a follow-up blog with tips for growing your Facebook following the right way!