Is It Legal To Buy IG Followers

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Karen Lin

Instagram 101 | Apr 18, 2023

Want More Real Instagram Followers?

The first thing that comes to mind when someone mentions buying Instagram followers is fake, bot-generated followers. Plenty of these exist, and they’re cheap and easy to find. You spend a little money, and your account is flooded overnight with thousands of followers.

You go from 100 to 10,000 followers overnight. The appeal is obvious. With such a large influx of fake followers, you must ask yourself, will prospects and sponsors take you seriously?

Probably not.

Although buying fake Instagram followers is cheap and easy, some hidden costs might be incredibly expensive. They can ruin your reputation, alienate your real followers, and even get your account banned.

The key is buying organic (not fake) followers that grow your account naturally, delivering lasting value- not just a numbers boost. 

This article tells you how to do just that and answers the big question- is it legal to buy IG followers?

Is It Legal To Buy IG Followers: The Problem With Fakes

With fake followers, the seller likely owns thousands of fake, bot-generated accounts. So, in essence, you’re just buying a list. These aren’t real people; neither will they engage or be interested in your content. 

Photo of a list- much like the one users of fake followers are buying

Real targeted followers, on the other hand, are people — real people with real interests and needs. They can engage and help you grow your business.
These help your business grow that don’t fall foul of Instagram’s terms and conditions.

So is it legal to buy IG followers? Yes. But you need to ensure they are organic, not fake.

But how do you tell the real from the phony?!

How To Tell Fake Followers From Real Ones

Luckily, it’s not as difficult as you think once you know what to look for! Here are a few things that can help you distinguish between fake and real followers:

  • Engagement Rate: Fake views/followers have no engagement or interaction. The followers you get will never comment, like, or share your posts. To get likes, comments, and shares, you must return to the platform and buy them separately.
  • Unusual Followers: Fake followers often come in bulk — and from countries with nothing to do with your business or target audience. Imagine getting Brazil followers on a page targeting people in the United States.
  • Drop-Off: Fake views or followers don’t last forever. If you notice your follower count suddenly dropping, it is likely because the fake ones have been detected and removed by Instagram’s algorithms.
  • Fake Profiles: People need more time to create millions of Instagram accounts. So, they let bots do their bidding. And you can spot these profiles easily – they have no profile picture, posts, or bio. And even if they do, it’s often filled with random and sometimes lewd content. Plus, they won’t have natural engagement.

Bottom Line – Is It Legal to Buy IG Followers?
Yes, because the law is yet to catch up to the technology. But since it flies against Instagram’s terms of service, it won’t be long before it is made illegal, at least concerning the fake followers that try to game the system.

Picture of legal gavel- like the question: Is It Legal To Buy IG Followers

So, to stay ahead of the curve, you must follow the same golden rules that have always underpinned successful Instagram brands: great content, customer engagement, and organic growth.

Is It Legal To Buy IG Followers: What Are the Risks of Buying Fake IG Followers?

Is it legal to buy IG followers? Yes. But if you buy fake, it comes with more risks than rewards.

  • The Possibility of Getting Your Account Blocked: Instagram’s algorithms are smart enough to detect and delete fake accounts. So, if you buy fake followers in bulk, there is a high chance that Instagram might take notice and suspend your account.
  • Your Reputation Will Be Hurt: Back in the day, it was a dirty little secret for IG marketers, but now? People buy fake views, and everyone knows about them. Users can now quickly tell who has fake followers and who doesn’t. So, if Instagram catches you with fake followers, your reputation as an influencer or business will take a hit. And once you lose your credibility and trustworthiness, it’s an uphill struggle to regain it.
  • It’s Just Not Worth the Money: Fake followers aren’t just bad for your reputation. They also waste money because they don’t contribute to your growth. They don’t comment, like, or share your posts and can’t help you increase sales or build customer relationships.
  • Reach and Engagement Balance: Fake followers won’t engage with your content. And if they do, it will be minimal. So, you’ll end up with a huge follower count and low engagement rate, which looks suspicious.
  • You’ll Mess Up Your Analytics: Fake followers will mess up your analytics, distorting the true picture of your follower count and engagement rate. Remember, the Instagram algorithm considers your followers and engagement rate when deciding which posts to push out. So, if you have a lot of fake followers, Instagram will not show your post in people’s feeds, decreasing your reach even further.

How Much Engagement Do Genuine Accounts Have?

Markerly did a study to determine how much engagement genuine accounts have compared to fake ones. They analyzed the accounts of 2 million influencers and compared their engagement rates.

Here’s what they found:

  • An Instagram account with about 1,000 genuine followers will have an engagement of about 8% — that means each post gets about 80 likes or comments.
  • An Instagram account with over 10,000 followers usually has an engagement rate of approximately 4% to 5%.
  • Accounts with more than 100,000 followers can have as low as a 1.8% engagement rate.
  • And lastly, accounts with more than 1 million followers will have an average engagement rate of 1.7%.
Picture of graphs like the statistics mentioned above

While these are just averages, they give us an idea of how much engagement genuine accounts have. If the numbers veer far too off from what you see in your analytics, it could be a sign that some of your followers are fake.

If the engagement is too high, the chances are that the Instagrammer in question has joined circles that comment and share each other’s posts to inflate their numbers. While this act isn’t nearly as bad as buying fake followers, it still offers little value to brands or businesses looking to build genuine relationships with actual people.

Similarly, buying fake followers will push your engagement statistics far off the charts, an immediate red flag to those you work with or those looking to partner up with you.

So, is it legal to buy IG followers? What you want are growth and engagement. Both of which fake followers bring.

But there IS a solution.

Is It Legal To Buy IG Followers: The Safe and Sustainable Solution

We’ve answered the question, “Is it legal to buy IG followers” now: Yes; but be wary of buying fake followers. But that’s not to say you should give up on getting more followers.You may still need them to get the traction your account needs to grow.

The good news is there are plenty of legitimate ways to increase your Instagram following without resorting to shady tactics.

If you want to get more followers without risking your reputation, we recommend using an AI-targeting tool. You can use these tools to focus on high-value followers and target them with content they can resonate with.

No bots, no fake accounts, and no illegal activities. Just content that engages real people and brings them to your page.

Is It Legal To Buy IG Followers: The Safe Way and How It Works

The AI-targeted Instagram follower growth platform doesn’t sell followers. Instead, it analyses a user’s behavior and interests, then uses machine learning to target them with relevant content.

Here’s how the platform works:

  • You Inform Them About Your Target Audience: While fake followers focus on volume, AI-targeted follower growth tools focus on quality. Before boosting your social media presence, you need to tell them who your target audience is – their location, gender, age group, interests, and more.
  • The Platform Promotes Your Content: Once they know your target audience, they begin promoting content. They use machine learning algorithms and deep insights to identify your target audience and then show them the content they will most likely engage with.
  • You Get Real, Targeted Followers: With this approach, you won’t get fake followers in bulk. Instead, you’ll be exposing your brand to people with genuine interests in your brand and more likely to engage with it in the long run. Exactly what your influencing brands should be doing, just faster and on a bigger scale, by experts.

The Best Platforms for Organic IG Growth

AI-targeted follower growth tools are trusted by some of the leading brands in the world- such as Uber, L’Oréal, Buzzfeed, Fabfitfun, and Proactiv+

And that’s because these tools effectively grow real, targeted followers and drive engagement and actual sales.

It is not cheating a system. It is accelerating growth. Here are the best platform available.

  1. Path Social
    Path Social use their own team of influencers alongside their AI targeting algorithm to put your content in front of your target audience. There are no bots or fake followers. They drive organic, authentic growth that speeds up growth while staying on the right side of Instagram’s rules.
  2. UseviralIn
    In addition to being able to choose your target audience, Useviral allows you to run multiple Instagram campaigns at the same time to really boost your exposure organically. Its aim is to provide targeted results, so you get more targeted followers and grow your brand.
  3. Kicksta
    Using a proprietary AI algorithm, Kicksta helps companies grow their Instagram accounts organically by engaging with targeted followers.

    They offer a variety of flexible plans, including a top tier that guarantees 1200 followers/month through a network of influencers, and solutions with advanced targeting tools.
    It’s all about growth with; there’s no need to worry about bots, fake accounts, or unmet expectations. They target the right accounts and find you the perfect followers for your brand.
  5. Growthoid
    Growthoid is a fully-managed Instagram growth service that means that all interactions are done by hand; you will be assigned an account manager responsible for getting you more followers on Instagram. By following your instructions, they will engage with the exact users you need, not only allowing you to increase your Instagram followers but also increasing engagement.
Person celebrating- like after using this sustainable AND legal strategy

Summary: Is It Legal To Buy IG Followers?

So is it legal to buy IG followers?

Yes- but the shady, shortcut, fake followers route only builds your house on sand. A ticking-time-bomb til Instagram cracks down on the obvious fakes peddles by the less scrupulous suppliers out there.

At Path Social, we understand the value of real, organic growth. We will never suggest any unethical shortcuts or automation that could put your account at risk.

What Makes Path Social Different?
At Path Social, we help our clients build their presence by focusing on organic growth strategies– reaching your goals while staying true to your brand values.

Here’s what you can expect from us:

  • Real, Organic Instagram Followers: By real and organic, we mean genuine, interested users.
  • Quality Interaction & Engagement: When users engage with your content, it reflects the authenticity of your account and allows you to build genuine relationships.
  • Effective Organic Growth that Lasts: We’re not here to deliver quick-fix solutions. We’re here to help enhance and sustain your growth by utilizing genuine techniques that create lasting results.
  • Complete Transparency & Full Control: You’re the person in charge. We’re the facilitators. We want to ensure you understand what we’re doing and how it will benefit your account.

What You Won’t Get from Us:

  • Bot Followers: We focus on organic growth and don’t support unethical behavior.
  • Automations that Put Your Account at Risk: Automation tools can help you save time and increase efficiency. However, they must follow Instagram’s rules. We won’t suggest any automation that puts your account at risk.
  • Ask for Your Instagram Password: If you ever work with an agency that asks for your Instagram account password, run! That’s a big red flag.

That’s why 24,000 influencers trust us to take their brand to the top monthly.

Ready to Get Started? Follow this link to start growing your Instagram account today and see the results for yourself.