Need 'Friends' 'Fans' and 'Followers?' Paying for Social Media Popularity

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams West Sound Realty

paying-for-facebook-friends-and-fansMost of us have read the classic book, "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie.

Now comes a new twist. If you want to win friends/followers and influence people through social media, just hand over your credit card!

An Internet-based social media marketing company, uSocial.net, just recently launched a suite of services for Facebook, including the ability to purchase friends and fans.

For only 7.6 cents per friend, you can buy up to 5,000 Facebook friends. The company has also been selling followers on Twitter, offering a sliding scale from 1000 followers for $87 to 100,000 followers for $3479.paying-for-followers

According to the company CEO Leon Hill, "Facebook is an extremely effective marketing tool, as anyone with a large number of targeted friends or fans can attest to. The only problem is that is can be extremely difficult to achieve such a following, which is where we come in."

The folks at uSocial.net say they can target friends/followers to be added to a user's Facebook or Twitter account determined by specific interest groups, industry affiliations, or geographic location.

My question is this: "What kind of friends/fans/followers are you paying for?" Will they be genuinely interested in what you have to say or what you're marketing/promoting? My sense is that the people who would be willing to pay for friends/fans/followers are the same ones who would pay for a 3rd party to automate their 'twits' and 'updates.' What kind of conversation is that? It runs along the same vein as hiring a ghost writer for your blog.

The true value proposition of 'social' media lies in its ability to attract, engage, and foster meaningful dialog - dialog that necessitates 'real' active participation from both sides of the conversation.

Unfortunately, there will always be those who simply hit the 'easy' button and attempt to shortcut the process. In the end, their automated content will only serve to further clutter the netscape with annoying SPAM, and fall on the deaf, indifferent ears of their hired following/friends.


Would You Pay for Facebook Friends/Fans or Twitter Followers?(polls)

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Rich Jacobson is a licensed real estate professional in Kitsap County WA. He's been married to a drop-dead gorgeous blonde for over 25 years, has four totally awesome kids, and a purebred Golden Lab named Sadie. You can also find him at KitsapLife.com, SOUNDBITEBLOG, and Crabbing in the Hood.

 

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Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Tim Ludemann 10/01/2009 11:33 AM
  2. Donald Bradbury 10/01/2009 08:46 PM
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Rainmaker
562,448
Steve, Joel & Steve A. Chain
Chain Real Estate Investments & Mortgage, Steve & Joel Chain - Cottonwood, CA

Rich,  I think it just exploits a human weakness. That is, the tendency to fall for a get rich quick scheme.  Business doesn't work that way.

Oct 01, 2009 10:38 AM #29
Rainmaker
526,485
Robert Hammerstein
Keller Williams Valley Realty - Hillsdale, NJ
Bergen County NJ Real Estate

Rich - Paying for friends? unbelievable.... Just goes to show you that some people just don't have real friends and that's sad...... Maybe they'll put up a late night tv add to complement their service as well... I have become more selective in my "friends" list on FB as well as Twitter.... It's just another form of spamming buying people's names.....Just my two cents...

Oct 01, 2009 11:09 AM #30
Rainer
199,058
Tim Ludemann
Sand Castle Realty Group, Inc. - Estero, FL

WOW!...I had no idea the steps people would take for marketing!

Oct 01, 2009 11:32 AM #31
Ambassador
536,155
JO SOSS
HOMEFRONT Realty - Bremerton, WA
Kitsap County WA Real Estate - HOMEFRONT Realty

At first I thought how crazy -or why didn't I think of that first! haha - But then I read John's comment and he does have a point.  If a company could get me in touch with locals that would be worth a charge.  We pay for other types of "social networking" - PTA's, Chambers, and other organizations. 

Oct 01, 2009 12:02 PM #32
Rainer
14,060
Martin Clement
KELLER WILLIAMS OTTAWA REALTY - Ottawa, ON
ClementMoore Real Estate Group

Interesting!

What advantages would someone gain in having more friends (facebook) or Followers (Twitter).

This company decided to make a business out of it... They must be seeing advantages we are not.

John does have a good point...  

Oct 01, 2009 12:14 PM #33
Rainmaker
55,331
Kristin Mason
New Market Title Agency - Independence, OH

It's about quality not quantity.  I recently was on a "social media" webinar and the whole focus was more, you need more....What? I couldn't believe my ears...then i hung up...I would rather have 100 followers on twitter then 3000 just to have the numbers.  I focus on what interests me and what we may have in common.....

my thoughts.......

Oct 01, 2009 12:42 PM #34
Rainmaker
313,249
Karen Pierce
Karen Pierce | Housing Counselor |Oregon - Medford, OR

I can hardly keep up with the numbers I have, let alone add to that. It IS about interaction and providing something of value vs. who has the most numbers, is it not?

Oct 01, 2009 12:59 PM #35
Rainer
47,226
Cassi @ Knightyme Video Tours
Knightyme Video Tours - Lawrenceville, GA

Now I have heard everything. Most importantly are being really paying for them?

Oct 01, 2009 01:03 PM #36
Ambassador
528,881
Rich Jacobson
Keller Williams West Sound Realty - Poulsbo, WA
Your Kitsap County WA Real Estate Broker

Jo and John:   I suppose that much would have to depend upon the process/premise by which this company obtains these 'friends' 'fans' and 'followers.' How qualified are they? How are they solicited? Is there someone out there simply creating these phony profiles just to sell to companies such as this? And so, let's just say, for argument's sake, that a person pays for these 'friends/followers'...then what? Will they pay for someone to post updates and the occasional tweet? For those of us who have been at this long enough, we know what truly attracts viable, qualified connections is contributing consistently good quality content. The only advantage I see to a service like this is just creating the allusion that someone is popular in the hopes that others might be-friend or follow.

Oct 01, 2009 01:24 PM #37
Rainmaker
645,178
Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

Buying "friends" sems to be defeating the purpose of the social networking sites.  I think I'll just make mine the old fashioned way.

Kathy

Oct 01, 2009 01:27 PM #38
Rainmaker
43,560
Cara Pearlman
Frankly Real Estate, Inc - Bethesda, MD
Realtor - ABR, SFR

With out a doubt "buying friends" defeats the purpose of of Social Networking as Kathy stated. I find it kind of disturbing that people are purchasing friends. If the purpose of having a FB page is for exposure and the people that are being paid to be friends most likely don't care what you have to say then it is pointless. I don't think clients want a Realtor that is the most popular person in the world - they want some one that has experience and is competent. Number of friends does not equal number of transactions. 

Oct 01, 2009 01:59 PM #39
Rainer
119,326
Sean Carroll
The Get Off Your A$$ Academy - Manhattan, NY
Real Estate Speaker and "Expert" Coach

I agree with you. While I don't see the harm in paying a virtual assistant to post SOME articles that are less personal in terms of a blog, I believe I should be posting regularly, or else its not my personality coming through. Same with social media. If I am automating everything, my followers will see that, and how relevant will I really be in that community?

Oct 01, 2009 02:37 PM #40
Ambassador
1,258,050
Erica Ramus
Erica Ramus - Ramus Realty Group - Pottsville, PA - Pottsville, PA
MRE, Schuylkill County PA Real Estate

Paying for friends? I think that defeats the purpose.... nope.

Oct 01, 2009 06:42 PM #41
Rainmaker
309,039
David O'Doherty
Hometowne Realty Clayton East - Clayton, NC
Clayton NC Homes, Raleigh, NC

No I'm not buying friends, Is that a regular Facebook page you have or a business page?

Oct 01, 2009 09:19 PM #42
Ambassador
1,892,230
Judi K Barrett
Judi Barrett~Integrity Real Estate Services~Idabel, Oklahoma - Idabel, OK
Broker/Owner, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDAB

NO.  'nuff said.

Oct 01, 2009 10:19 PM #43
Ambassador
1,565,439
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 800-610-7253 DRE01267479 - Costa M

I don't see spending money for friends or followers.  I'm not sure how this would add to anything.

Oct 02, 2009 01:10 AM #44
Rainmaker
325,145
Esko Kiuru
Bethesda, MD

Rich,

Something like this was expected. As you point out, buying friends or contacts likely isn't going to pay off as envisioned by the buyers. This is no social media as it was intended.

Oct 02, 2009 05:27 PM #45
Rainmaker
147,182
Carol Pease
Pacesetter Properties - Cedar Park, TX
CRS, Broker-Associate 512-721-6320

I had no idea I could pay for friends.  Wow!  I can't believe what people will pay for and what others will sell. 

Oct 02, 2009 08:49 PM #46
Rainmaker
334,075
Judy Greenberg
Coldwell Banker Buffalo Grove- 350 Half Day Road - Buffalo Grove, IL
Coldwell Banker - Buffalo Grove - Long Grove Homes

What's next..  How ridiculous

Oct 03, 2009 07:21 AM #47
Rainmaker
531,769
Liz Moras
Harrison Hot Springs, Cultus Lake - Chilliwack, BC
Chilliwack Realtor, Garrison Crossing,Chilliwack, Abbotsford

No....but to be expected - someone would want to capitalize on it.........i personally think they should come up with a different word then 'friends' though...:-) - connections - works ....:-)

Oct 11, 2009 03:08 PM #48
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528,881

Rich Jacobson

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