In a world in which larger numbers provide proof of authority and expertise I wonder if there is a benefit to paying for fans for your Facebook Fan page.
I posed a similar question earlier this year regarding whether people should pay for Twitter followers and the general consensus was that it shouldn’t be done.
There is no doubt in my mind that organic growth is far superior to paying for fans, followers, comments, likes and all things similar. Dig through this blog and you’ll find lots of commentary about why comments are not currency and support for building your community around you.
Read through the various posts and you’ll find more than a few posts in which I referred to Steve Jobs as Voldemort and talked about the Cult of Apple. Yet if I was going to search for an example of a community of fans and fanatics Apple would be at the top of the list.
Think about it. It is not hard to find computers, cellphones, tablets and MP3 players for less than what it would cost to purchase the corresponding Apple Product but the Cult of Apple doesn’t care.
That is because Apple has convinced them that price is not the factor to base their purchasing decisions upon. They aren’t the low priced leader and you won’t ever see them be.
In a perfect world our community would be populated by that same rabid support. The readers of this blog would tell their friends. family and colleagues that they HAVE to read this and that it is a mistake not to.
Building The Cult Of Jack
It could be fun to create my own cult. Hell, who doesn’t want minions and groupies. Minions and groupies are happy to do all the scut work and handle the chores you just don’t want to do, but I don’t see it happening. Nor do I really want it.
What I want is to build a bigger platform and to reach more people. What I want is to build a bigger community which leads me back to the initial question and more thinking out loud.
Is there a significant difference between advertising and paying for people. Would that provide a short cut to the top and or make it easier to break free of the noise? What is natural growth for a blog? What would happen if I spoke every month at various conferences about social media?
One could argue that the additional exposure and the inclusion as a speaker at a conference(s) might yield significant benefits and that I’d gain a lot of new readers/fans/followers that way. Of course I would still have to retain them, but let’s not get into details.
While some of this is clearly tongue-in-cheek I can’t help but wonder. Every where we look there are stories about this. Google Klout and see what you find. Read Mark Schaefer’s post about Klout scores and ask yourself what you would do if you saw an easy way to gain that exposure we were talking about.
Part of what I love about social media is that it affords the opportunity to experiment and to try things. That is what led me to Triberr and it is going to continue to be part of what I do here.
I am going to keep poking, prodding, twisting and turning to see what happens. I might even try paying for those fans just to see what happens. There are multiple opportunities on Fiverr and I might give up my morning coffee and oatmeal to try it.
Will I feel slimy afterwards? Maybe or maybe not. I am experimenting and that requires taking some chances. Ultimately that won’t be what makes or breaks me. Content and people drive this corner of cyberspace. If I don’t provide content that makes you think/feel you won’t come back.
If I don’t work on building relationships with you it will make it that much harder to keep your attention.
So, what do you think about all this? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.