Many agencies are looking for ways to increase the number of fans on Facebook by offering freebies and discounts. The numbers suddenly go up and everyone is happy. But how long will this last? And how genuine are these so-called fans? And will they really support the brand for the long term? Isn’t it a bit like spamming or giving away lots of free samples and claiming the recipients are your new audience for ever?!
Manipulating search engines, creating fake fans to bolster figures is not a good long term policy. Just as conventional search engines learned how to screen out marketers who tried to manipulate their algorithms; new social search engines are likely to find out ways of screening out bogus fans.
As Augie Ray from Forrester shrewly points out, “Brands hoping to help their social search engine relevance by amassing fans should take heed — the easy way may work for a while, but the authentic and hard way always wins in the end.”