• Vivian Teo

IG users who follow you, then unfollow you after you follow them back - yeah, they exist!

Updated: Jul 22

An insight into Instagram users who follow you, then unfollow you after you follow them back. Yeah, they exist and here's the deal about such people.

So, I ranted on my IG stories the other day about how some people follow you, and then - thinking that you won't find out - unfollow you once you followed them back. After doing some 'spring cleaning' and analysis of my following/follower lists, I have gained some interesting insights. I had wanted to share this on my IG stories but seriously, don't think anyone will be able to read something so wordy unless they can speed read or have photographic memory!


Firstly, I don't use an app that informs you who had unfollowed you (Instagram itself doesn’t let us do that so you need a third party app to do so) and chances are most people don’t either, which is why people get away with “follow then unfollow” scams like that.


After my spring cleaning, I found these two traits among those who unfollowed me soon after I followed them back. Let's call the offending account 'X'. First of all, X and I have a number of mutual followers - IG does show the names of mutual followers - and by searching the names of these mutual followers (for easy search as I don't have time to search every single person on X's list) in X's follower/following lists, you'll find:

1) X follows NONE of these followers and

2) X only follows those who doesn't follow it (probably in wait of them following it then unfollowing the new followers).


I know there can be many reasons why someone unfollows someone but I've found the above traits in a number of accounts that followed then unfollowed me after I followed back. A little too coincidental if you ask me. To conclude, if I'm a follower chaser, I shouldn't follow X back, so that X will continue to follow me, no?


Like I said, I get it if people unfollow me if they are no longer interested in my content after a while but this unfollowing right after I follow you back is an outright scam. It stinks of dishonesty on your part to create a facade that you have loads of followers because you have a great product/content and people flock to follow you despite you following very few people.


There are people who gain followers by working hard to create good content and they attract followers who are genuinely interested in their content. These hardworking people don't resort to ploys like following loads of people to get them to follow back, then scamming people by unfollowing those who were nice enough to follow you back.


I usually follow fellow parents as I like interacting with other parents. Sometimes even if someone is not a parent, I do follow them back out of courtesy if their pics/content/products look nice.


I don't mind helping to boost people’s follower numbers even if I may not use their products or services and I'm sure I'm not the only one out there who extends such courtesy. But some people do take advantage of your niceness by unfollowing you right after they added you to their follower count thinking that you wouldn't find out. I had even unknowingly continued to support such people by liking their posts even after they had unfollowed me because I'm not so free (and most people wouldn't either I'm sure) to check all the time.


To people who do such things, I only have one thing to say: you'll get found out sooner or later, and your brand/name is going to take a beating from it as it reflects the kind of person/business you are. Would I want to support a dishonest business/product/person like that? No way. And trust me, word gets around. The next time you follow me, I will just remove you. I really don't need fake followers like that.


Lesson learned from this? I would only selectively follow back public accounts from now on. So if I don't follow you back, I’m afraid your content does not interest me (hey, to each his own, right? I'm sure not all people are interested in my family-oriented posts) AND/OR you display the two traits I listed above – even if I don’t install an app that tells me who unfollowed me, if it's very easy to tell from one's follower/following lists, ok?


(Please note that I don’t usually follow back private accounts as I understand they are mostly for friends and family. Once in a while I do request to follow back private accounts if I see that we have mutual friends or you have liked my posts many times. But if you rather not have me follow you back, feel free to ignore my request, no offence will be taken. And if you’re a legit account and would like me to follow back your private account, just drop me a DM, and let's decide from there 😊)


Disclaimer: My opinions and reviews here are strictly my and my family’s own.

©Vivian Teo. All content and photos are copyrighted to Vivian Teo unless otherwise specified.


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