If she ever tires of being one of Instagram’s most famous influencers, Chloe Morello might have a second career as a detective.
The YouTube star has posted an expose on fellow beauty bloggers, claiming they’re buying fake followers and likes in an attempt get money and products from brands.
Although Chloe refused to name these illegitimate influencers, she went into detail to show her fans just how they can discern which profiles are fraudulent.
‘I really hate drama, but I’m getting right into the drama. I’m basically the Instagram Edward Snowden’ Chloe began in the video, which has already been viewed more than 400,000 times.
YouTube star Chloe Morello has posted an expose on fellow beauty bloggers, claiming they’re buying fake followers and likes in an attempt get money and products from brands
Although Chloe refused to name these illegitimate influencers, she went into detail to show her fans just how they can find out which profiles are fraudulent
‘I’m seeing a lot of influencers come up and actually committing fraud, by fraudulently acquiring followers, comments, and likes on Instagram.’
Chloe began the video by recognising that, in the grand scheme of things, it may seem like a non-issue that people are spending their money buying fans.
‘This is going to sound so dramatic, but keep in mind, social media is a billion dollar business,’ she said.
‘We get paid to promote products, we get sent away on trips, we get gifted so much cool stuff. Brands are paying thousands of dollars for posts with these people, and some of these people have no following.’
‘It’s really frustrating to see people with these fake followings take opportunities away from my close friends who have a smaller but more authentic audience.’
Chloe said she mainly made the video for people in the Australian beauty industry, hoping it will ‘clue them into’ what is happening behind the scenes.
Chloe said she mainly made the video to speak directly to people in the Australian beauty industry, hoping it will ‘clue them into’ what is happening behind the scenes
Chloe’s investigation began when she came across one Instagram profile and saw the woman had more likes than views on a video (pictured), which she said is impossible
But she also showed the notes from her own investigation, giving any curious fan the tools to see if they could spot a fraud.
Chloe’s investigation began when she came across one Instagram profile and saw the numbers didn’t quite match up.
The person, who had 50,000 followers, had posted a make-up video that was viewed 2,500 views but somehow had 2,800 likes.
‘I’m not good at maths, but that’s not possible,’ Chloe said. ‘I knew immediately.’
The profile also had almost exactly 2,000 likes on every single picture, which Chloe also pointed out was unnatural.
‘You get a natural fluctuation in your interaction and engagement,’ she said. ‘I upload a picture and its got six comments and 10,000 likes, the next photo has 30,000 likes and 500 comments.’
‘There’s a very natural variation in my posts and that’s the same for everyone.’
The profile also had almost exactly 2,000 likes on every single picture, which Chloe also pointed out was unnatural
Chloe believes that these bloggers are getting these exact numbers via ‘comment pods’ (pictured), a WhatsApp group made up of hundreds of wannabe influencers
But after Chloe went through 50 posts on this Instagram account, she found that there were exactly 200 comments on almost every single picture.
Chloe believes that these bloggers are getting these exact numbers via ‘comment pods’, WhatsApp groups made up of hundreds of wannabe influencers.
‘You post your pictures or the link in the group, and everyone in that group will like and comment,’ the sleuthing beauty blogger explained.
‘So if there’s 200 people in the group, you know you’re getting 200 comments because, before you can post your photo in the group, you must comment on every single person’s photo in that Whatsapp group.’
And, after examining these profiles, Chloe believes that influencers aren’t even writing the comments themselves but rather hiring ‘virtual assistants’ to do so.
‘I’ve been following certain people to figure out how they’re doing this, and I believe they’re hiring someone in a foreign country,’ Chloe said.
Chloe found it strange that the same girls she had met and chatted with at events were leaving comments in broken English that often didn’t make any sense.
She also found evidence of her theory on SocialBlade , a social media analytics site, and found how different her projection of growth looked to these accounts sudden rises and dips
Meanwhile Chloe pointed out how her photos naturally get a varied amount of comments and likes each day, rather than these profiles that consistently get the same number
She also found evidence of her theory on SocialBlade, a social media analytics site that can track the growth of any Instagram, YouTube, or Twitter account.
Chloe compared her own projection of growth to that of two users who she suspected were buying fake followers, muzzing out their names.
‘I’ve got a very smooth projection of growth, and there are some times when that projection increases quite rapidly and sometimes when it’s really slow,’ she explained.
‘You can see pretty clearly that these people are buying followers once a week. It will go up really fast and plateau really fast, these followers have been bought in chunks.’
‘It’s natural that someone might have a very rapid projection – I get them when I do giveaways or someone gives me a shout out – but to have a succession of it 10 weeks in a row, I do not know how that’s possible.’
Chloe then recommended that any fake influencers who were watching start from scratch and try to build a legitimate fan base
Chloe said she was speaking out to help brands learn how to avoid being conned and paying for ‘fake followers, fake likes, and fake comments’.
‘The second a brand invests their ad dollars or gives opportunities or products to fake influencers, that’s where I think it’s fraud,’ she said.
‘This person has a fake following, it’s not legitimate, but the brand doesn’t know that. The brand isn’t going to get anything out of it.’
Chloe then recommended that any fake influencers who were watching should start from scratch and try to build a legitimate fan base.
‘Your only form of recourse would be to start a new account, just tell everyone you got hacked and start again,’ she said.
‘It’s my duty, as someone in my position, to Edward Snowden this s***.’