How to check Instagram for bots
Instagram was literally attacked by bots. Influencers are increasingly resorting to cheating in order to attract the attention of potential advertisers and gain the trust of the audience. Over a thousand subscribers and 3 likes on each post. Familiar situation? Gray bloggers are the main enemy of your ad campaign success.
By ordering a promotion from such a dubious opinion leader, you run the risk of being left both without money and without the expected feedback. In today’s article we will tell you how to check Instagram for bots and not get caught by unscrupulous bloggers who will drag your brand to the bottom.
Why is checking Instagram for bots necessary?
First, it is worth assessing the scale of the disaster. Statistics show that about 80% of bloggers shamelessly wind up followers . Impressive, isn’t it? However, advertisers themselves do not differ in a conscious approach to business. It turned out that 85% of brands do not request blogger statistics, and the remaining 15% are content with Instagram screenshots or data from a presentation.
The Times recently conducted a rather interesting experiment, creating a Twitter account and contacting Devumi, a company that specializes in cheating bots. The cost of the service is $ 225. For this money, the company promised the media 25 thousand followers.
No sooner said than done. The first 10,000 users were very similar to real people – with avatars, unfounded descriptions in the profile header, original nicknames and even geolocations. The next 15,000 users didn’t even try to look real. They were given random names and a complete lack of activity on the account.
The moral of this fable is as follows: you cannot believe a beautiful picture and imaginary statistics. If you want to get a really high-quality case and increase sales, you need to carefully check bloggers for cheating. When the lion’s share of followers are bots that are not interested in the content being published, you run the risk of wasting your entire advertising budget.
Opinion leaders often raise the price, referring to the number of subscribers, and you give them money, not even suspecting that there will be no feedback from such a promotion, alas.
We destroy the myths about cheating bots
The topic of cheats has long been overgrown with myths and here are some of them:
- If the account is verified, this guarantees the blogger’s conscientiousness. Alas, the blue check mark next to the nickname only indicates that the profile belongs to a celebrity or company. This does not affect the quality of the audience.
- Quality content is a sign of a “live” audience. Another stereotype. Of course, if a user starts an account for the sake of making money, he will ennoble it in every way and invest in promotion. Sometimes it happens that influencers, chasing quick popularity, wind up bots in order to rise in the eyes of potential advertisers. The same type of comments and a “dead” audience – such a set will not provide you with the necessary feedback.
- Good reviews. Just because one blogger praises another doesn’t mean he really likes him. Mutual PR is a common practice among influencers. It is unlikely that an influencer will analyze in detail the quality of his colleague’s audience before starting to advertise a profile.
- A high level of engagement means that the influencer does not resort to cheating. This is also a misconception. Even with a high ER, you cannot be sure that your likes and comments are 100% organic.
- A stable growth schedule is an indicator of the quality of the audience. Small fluctuations can also be present in the influencer with low-quality target audience.
How to check an account for bots
Influencers have learned to masterfully hide cheats. If earlier it was possible to find many profiles with a 100,000 audience and several likes under posts, which immediately pushed to unambiguous conclusions, today everything has become much more complicated.
In order to recognize the cheating of bots, it is not necessary to sit with a magnifying glass and conduct a fundamental analysis of the blogger’s account. There are several simple and effective ways to help you distinguish fake followers from real ones in no time. We will cover the basic methods in this section.
You can check the blogger manually. Yes, you will waste your personal time, but make sure yourself whether the influencer is cheating on you:
- Compare the ratio of likes and comments. Examine the most recent 20-30 posts. For example, if a post has collected 2 thousand likes and more than 3 thousand comments with the same admiration flaunt under it, this is an obvious cheat.
- Check the dynamics of likes. If the last post earned the admiration of users and received thousands of likes, and the post that was published a week ago did not even reach a hundred, run away from this blogger, since he is not quite is honest with advertisers and tries hard to show off. The normal distribution of likes is 40-100%. More or less is already suspicious
- Monitor comments. Bots do not shine with either intelligence or imagination, so they often leave standard responses under the photo. Phrases from the category of “great publication”, “I like your account”, “what a nice shot” are sure signs that the blogger is abusing fake followers and trying to pass on wishful thinking.
trendHERO is a convenient online service that will help you study in detail the target audience of a blogger, analyze statistics and the quality of content.
- Clear Evidence Subscriber Verification;
- no need to connect your own account;
- it is possible to check both personal accounts and business projects;
- machine learning for validation algorithms.
Basic information about bloggers is provided free of charge. If you want to check influencers for bots cheating, a subscription will cost 9.99 USD per month. When registering an account, you get 1 check for free.
A useful feature is the search for 500 similar bloggers and a built-in database of advertising posts.
Account statistics and general information
First, you need to collect basic account information: blogger name, number of followers, how many posts an influencer posts per month and how many likes his posts collect on average.
The data obtained will help you compose an approximate portrait of the blogger’s target audience and monitor the activity of subscribers. Agree, it’s very strange when there are only a few photos on the page, and the profile is followed by over 10K people. A completely logical question is brewing: why are subscribers so interested in a “dead” account?
It is important to remember about harmony. Accounts potentially attractive to advertisers, for example, with 500K subscribers and 25K likes under the posts. It is advisable that the influencer posts at least one post per day.
The second stage is detailed analysis using trendHERO . The site provides over 90 metrics to check opinion leaders and choose the most suitable one.
The first thing you should pay attention to is the dynamics of the growth of subscribers. The graph should not contain sharp spikes. If at first you observe active following, and then people suddenly start to unsubscribe en masse, this in 99% of cases indicates a cheat. Another option – the account participated in Giveaway and after its completion the followers dramatically lost interest in the blogger.
Next, let’s look at the growth of subscriptions. If you can see that an influencer subscribes to people with varying success, and then unsubscribes, repeatedly performing this simple procedure, then, most likely, the opinion leader is abusing mass following.
Engagement Rate is an indicator that helps to calculate the ratio of the number of followers to the active actions that they take on the influencer’s page. This way you can check subscribers “for reality”.
For example, according to Scrunch, the engagement rate for Instagram, derived as the ratio of all reactions to posts over the past 30 days to the number of posts and the number of followers, is subject to the following gradation:
- less than 1% – low rate;
- from 1% to 3.5% – average;
- from 3.5% to 6% – high;
- over 6% is very high.
A low score may indicate two problems: either the opinion leader has low-quality content, or he sins by cheating bots.
You should also pay attention to the ratio of likes and comments. Ideal proportions: 100 likes = 1 comment.
Check for bots in subscribers
For a start, it is worth focusing on the demographic characteristics of Central Asia – gender, age, country of residence, hobby.
It is also important to know who is the most active. This can be clearly demonstrated by charts divided according to the principle of “all” and “like”. The dominant positions in both schemes must be the same. If not, then this already gives rise to certain suspicions.
Don’t forget to analyze the interests of your followers. If these are real people, then their hobbies should correspond to the theme of the account.
The next step is to find out what type of blogger’s audience belongs to. Most of the followers should be real people, not shops and “Saratov nails”. The only exceptions are B2B profiles. In this case, commercial accounts come to the fore in percentage terms.
Finally, focus on the following indicators:
- “Target audience availability” – if this indicator is high, then you will receive good feedback from advertising.
- “Audience authenticity” – the more followers look authentic, the less chances you will get caught by a blogger who cheats bots.
- “Average Likes” is an estimate of the click-through rate for an ad.
trendHERO is a fairly simple, but very powerful tool in the fight against bots and unscrupulous influencers. Just enter your account login and the service will collect information about subscriber growth, average indicators, audience type and location, analyze comments, posts, and who the blogger advertised.
Bots are the main enemies of blogger productivity and negatively affect the success of your ad campaign. Despite the fact that Instagram algorithms have not taken into account the number of subscribers for a long time, relying on quality, some influencers are still chasing the coveted number, resorting to cheating and mass following. We recommend that you analyze in detail the profiles of influencers before offering them cooperation.