Oh, hey look, a new follower! Wait, they already unfollowed me. What's going on here?

It happens a lot more than you'd think. Lazy Instagram users use a tactic called Follow/Unfollow in an attempt to get more followers on their account. It's super lame.

Here's how it works: You go and follow as many accounts as possible, in hopes that they'll also follow you back, increasing your follower count. If they don't follow you back after a certain amount of time, you unfollow them. Rinse, repeat. Ad nauseam.

While that sounds pretty harmless, it's actually a pretty shady thing to do, and it's ruining Instagram in a lot of ways. Don't believe me? There's whole blogs written about the topic. Basically, it's just a cheap way to appear as if you have a large social following, that you're a "social media guru," or some big social media influencer. If you have to beg for followers using this method, trust you're none of those things.

Even worse, some people have stooped to using paid, automated apps to Follow/Unfollow for them. This is a real thing you can pay a company to do for you. If you've ever seen an Instagram account follow you, unfollow you, follow you again only to unfollow you again, this is what's happening. Suspect that someone is using a Follow/Unfollow bot? It's super easy to find out. The website Social Blade tracks Instagram users follower and following count so you can see daily how many people an account is following and/or unfollowing. If you see an Instagram user following hundreds of accounts in one day, only to unfollow hundreds a few days later, they're using a Follow/Unfollow scheme bot. Just type in the users Instagram name at the top and all the data is right in front of you.

Luckily, there's a lot of real and honest ways you can boost your social following, all without being lazy or using a bot. Want to grow your numbers the right way? Check this out.