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Should You Buy an Instagram Account?

First, let’s start by saying that an Instagram account or any social media page for that matter, are controlled by publicly traded companies. That’s an important point to consider because you do not own that channel. Like we’ve seen in recent years, tech companies can shut down or suspend a page for what they deem offensive or not in sync with their terms of use. There are many variables to consider when buying an Instagram or social media account. It’s much like buying a business. So, create a list of pros and cons before you think about buying and Instagram account. There are many marketplaces (websites that match buyer and sellers) that provide this type of service. We’ll cover 3 marketplaces in this post.

Here are some questions you should consider:

  1. Does it generate revenue? If so, how much?
  2. Does this profile send traffic to a specific website listed in the profile? If so, will the website be included?
  3. How did the account get it’s followers? Hopefully they didn’t buy it or grow it through PODS.
  4. Insights- Assuming the account has been converted into a business account, ask the seller to give you full access to the Insights data (activity, audience, content) If they allow you to login their account you may want to check the actual “activity” report which tells you the amount of time they’ve spent on Instagram
  5. Followers- to learn more about their followers and the engagement with the account you can simply do this from your own account. Definitely spend a lot of time analyzing those followers (how many people do they follow vs people follow them, where are the accounts from, how many posts do they have, do those posts get engagement, etc). Have they ever used bots to increase followers?
  6. Posts- How often do they post? What kind of posts are these? static, video, stories, etc. How many people engage with their posts and what do they say? Are these the same people engaging post after post? Have they ever used bots to post comments?
  7. Original Content- Make sure you find out if the images on this account are unique. if these are stock images you’ll want to find out how they obtained it. If they simply downloaded images from Google or some other search engine you won’t know if they infringed on copyrights. If they used something like Canva to create their posts maybe they’ll share that account with you.
  8. Messaging – make sure you assess the messages with followers. The best Influencers are communicating with their audience through the Messages.
  9. Facebook/Messenger- Is this Instagram account connected
  10. Video- How many videos to they have? How many video views does it get? Are they using IGTV? Have they used Live videos with Stories?

Other points to consider before buying an Instagram account

  • StoriesHow does their Highlights folder of Stories look? What are the most popular Stories and how many people viewed it?
  • Paid Ads – Has this account ever promoted any Posts or Stories? If so, what were the results?
  • 3rd Party Platforms- you’ll want to ask them if they’ve used any 3rd party platforms to share, schedule and optimize the posts on their Instagram account. You may want to consider the cost of managing this account through those platforms like Hootsuite, Buffer, Union Metrics and many others.
  • Legal – before you enter into an agreement to buy this profile make sure you do a Search for the account name on various search engines to make sure there’s nothing hanging out there. If you decide to buy it make sure that the agreement is very specific about who owns the Content created from the accounts inception. What you don’t want to see is this user take the Content and simply start a new account using the same posts (text and images).

Another way to go about buying a profile is to talk directly to the page owner. Perhaps, follow and engage with them as a user before ever considering to make an offer. Try messaging them so you can see their response time. If they have a website to go along with the account you’ll want to address that as well. Will the website be included with the sale? Will other social media accounts be included? How will they introduce you to their fans, advertisers and influencers? Would they consider staying on for 6 months to assist you in the transition? The bottom line is you need to ask questions before taking any serious step to sign a contract or making a payment. As you can see there are many points to consider when buying an Instagram account. If all else fails, go the old fashion way and build your own empire. Good luck!

Alex Oliveira

I’m Alex. I’m a dad, husband, an entrepreneur and an information junkie. I am a passionate guy — I love business and I really love helping business owners turn their passions into profits. I’ve spent the last 10+ years helping clients advance their businesses and brands through dynamic interactive marketing campaigns. I always welcome a challenge and am relentless in the pursuit of innovative marketing strategies that actually work.