How spammers are having a field day making money on Instagram
I’ve talked about how to make money on Instagram the legitimate way on my posts about Instagram limits and scarcely mentioned it on an update on automating Instagram growth. What I didn’t plan on doing was to write about spamming Instagram and making money doing so.
Well, I thought it’s about time I explained the nature of those click-link-in-bio-to-get-10000-followers-now! type of accounts. I have to declare that I’m not a huge fan of those types of ventures for many reasons. For one, they’re extremely annoying especially when you get tagged on their posts multiple times by unknown accounts, and secondly, these are churn-and-burn type of accounts meaning they are created in masses and even when they get caught and banned by Instagram, the owners don’t really care. I’m one person who takes losing an Instagram account very personal.
You might be wondering why anyone would bother creating new Instagram accounts and then just lose a bunch of them in an instant even if they made a few dollars.
The answer to that is, folks are becoming smarter by the day and the thousands of staff working at Instagram are simply not enough to contain tens of thousands of spammers coming up with smarter methods to spam Instagram and make a dollar every hour.
So how do they do it?
How to make money spamming Instagram
In this entry, I’m going to cover only CPI (Cost Per Install). What this means is, they’re getting paid when a viewer performs certain actions. I’ll give an example:
In 2016, for instance, there are thousands upon thousands of app developers. It could be Android- or iOS apps but the competition to get your app downloaded or even seen by mobile users is extremely stiff that many are forced to quit.
The solution to this? Advertisement! Not very genius but still an unconventional kind of advertisement.
What happens is, mobile developers, for instance, will join networks that offer CPI to publishers as a means of earning money and by so doing, they get their apps downloaded and installed by the masses. In return, they make money when you run their apps (e.g mobile games) and while you’re playing the games, ad banners (Adsense) will show on your mobile screen and they will make a few pennies off of it. It could be anything from $0.20 to $5 depending on the value of the product being advertised on your screen. They make even more when you make in-app purchases.
It gets even better for them when their apps get downloaded multiple times and either Google Play Store or the App Store will list them among the popular apps leading to organic downloads.
So these spammers will set up multiple accounts each offering you something for FREE. When you click on the link, you’ll be led to a landing page with the product. Here, you will be asked to perform a certain action in order to receive your gift. In many cases, you’ll be asked to ‘prove you’re human‘ by downloading an app or two. I’m not sure, but I doubt you actually get these gifts even after you’ve completed the action. Here’s a random landing page I requested:GoPro Giveaway. If you complete any action asked, a few cents/dollars will be added to my account.
I think most people prefer to work with Ogads because it offers free landing pages and pays on a weekly basis.
- Disclaimer: I don’t believe Ogads supports spamming. They actually have many tools through which genuine publishers can monetize their content.
Now let’s talk about how spammers get you to download these apps.
There are two types of spammers: moderate and the aggressive spammers. The difference is in the efforts they make to get your attention. The moderate spammers lose their accounts seldom, while the aggressive ones are losing accounts by the hour (some may last for days/months).
The moderate spammers will do just what most people are doing: follow you, like 1,2.. images and hope you’ll take a look at their accounts and notice what they’re advertising (followers in this case).
The aggressive ones, on the other hand, will follow you, like, comment and even tag you on posts using multiple accounts just so you’d notice what they want you to. They use services like Igerslike to buy ‘tagging’ which are extremely cheap. Instagram usually catches up on them and bans these accounts, but by the time they get caught they will have bought many more of the same. The whole process is automated so they hardly break any sweat.
As I’ve mentioned, spammers don’t actually create 100s of accounts by themselves, they buy them. Yes, there are multiple providers of Instagram accounts, you just need to know where to look. It could cost as little as $0.15/account that is more than 2 weeks old.
One spammy Instagram account could easily make between $1-$5/day depending on their strategy. I know what you’re thinking: too little? Well here’s where it gets interesting. These spammers are running hundreds of accounts at once. Their tools of trade are:
- 100s/1000s of Instagram accounts
- 100s proxies
- Massplanner/FollowLiker or any other automation tool and
- Igerslike (for the aggressive spammers)
I’ve only seen these four at work but there could be more.
They join CPI networks like Ogads, select offers and request landing pages (takes minutes to receive one). Once the account is set up, they load it on Massplanner or any other tool, each with its own proxy and leave them to make money for them while they go lay in a hammock.
So if one account makes $1/day, 200 accounts will get them a minimum of $200/day.
With the kind of money they’re making, they are able to pay for better VPS or better computers that will run all their accounts on bots effortlessly. There’s really no visible limit to how many accounts they’re running. Not forgetting that if you’re running this scheme on a grand scale, your monthly total cost could be as little as $50. This is probably why no one wants to share this kind of information.
In preparing to write this post, I did a mini experiment and used one of my old accounts to test this method. I’ll admit that I suck at this and the results I got do not necessarily represent what the experienced spammers are getting.
So I joined Ogads. Since everyone is seemingly excited about Pokemon, I picked an offer for PokeCoins and requested for a landing page which I received soon after. Basically, it promises to reward PokeCoins for free, so a few lazy Pokemon trainers will definitely be interested in this.
Pokémon Tales (@pokemon.tales) * Instagram photos and videos
As soon as the account was ready, I deleted all old images and went to Reddit to look for new images that rhyme with the Pokemon theme. Everything you need for any topic, there’s always a subreddit for it 🙂 . I found Reddit.com/r/pokemongo for my experiment. The beauty of Reddit is, you can easily find threads that are most popular based on the upvotes. So I collected a good number of images based on upvotes and their descriptions and scheduled MassPlanner to post them to my page for an entire 3 weeks. It took less than 30 minutes to get all these done.
At the time of doing this, I had a little over 1000 followers on this account. And with the growth methods described in my older Instagram posts, the account has gained followers and continues to, all on autopilot.
I’m the worst in this game so my daily average results from the 1 account I used would look like this:
Well, there you have it. Next time you’re tagged on some random posts at least you’ll know what they’re about.
Feel free to shoot any questions you may have.