Spotting An Instagram Ambassador Scam

By Marina Krivonossova on June 10, 2021

If you’ve got a public account on Instagram, you’ve probably received offers to become an ambassador for a certain company. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but these offers, while seemingly tempting, are more often than not scams. They can come your way via comments on a photo you posted or via private messaging, but no matter how they make their way into your life, they share one common goal: to exploit you and take your money. But how do you differentiate between the legitimate offers to become an ambassador and the scams? Here’s a quick guide to spotting an Instagram ambassador scam in a few easy steps. If you’re wondering if the offers you’re receiving to represent a brand are real or not, start by asking yourself the following questions.

“Does it seem too good to be true?”

If the offer does indeed seem too good to be true, then more likely than not, it’s unfortunately a scam. If you’re the proud owner of an Instagram account that doesn’t have thousands of followers, daily posts, and no photos generating hundreds of likes, then think about it: would it make sense for a reputable brand to offer you their products for free? Imagine yourself as a company owner who’s trying to get word out about your products. Whom would you offer free products to? The Instagram user with thousands of followers, hundreds of posts, a new story every day, and a clearly positive reputation amongst their respective community? Or the Instagram user with eight hundred followers, ten posts, and ninety likes per photo? Approach the situation logically and genuinely try to evaluate whether the offer you’ve received sounds too good to be true.

Pro tip: If you’ve received an offer to rep a brand selling skincare products when all your Instagram photos are very clearly nature shots without a soul in sight, you’ve clearly become a victim of a mass messaging ambassador scam (image via

“Did the message or comment come from a legitimate Instagram account?”

Take a look at the user who sent you the brand ambassador offer. There are a few red flags to look out for when evaluating a user: the quality of their profile photo, the amount of posts they have up, their followers and the quality thereof, and the feedback they receive on their posts. I promise that if you look at most of the accounts sending out these ambassador offers, you’ll see that they’re lacking any substance. They’re very clearly spam accounts existing solely to manipulate and exploit naive Instagram users.

“Is the message or comment you receive asking you to DM somebody?”

If your offer to become an ambassador entails reaching out to someone — generally not the person who sent you the initial offer — it’s a scam. If a brand really wants to work with you, I promise that they will make an effort to make it happen. But if they request that you make the first move by messaging yet another arbitrary account, then I hate to say it, but it’s absolutely going to be another Instagram ambassador scam.

“Are you being asked to invest your own money into becoming an ambassador?”

“Become one of our brand ambassadors today and receive two FREE pieces of jewelry with the purchase of one!” Sound familiar? That’s generally the sort of phrasing you’ll see with Instagram ambassador scams. Another take on that is, “Become an ambassador today and get two pairs of leggings FREE! Just pay shipping and handling.” In these situations, the company is generally profiting exclusively off your one purchase or the shipping fee you pay. The goods you receive are extremely low quality and certainly not worth a single penny. But, if these companies trick you successfully, they’ll be profiting not only off your purchase, but also off the exposure you’ll offer them. That’s why it’s extremely important to stay vigilant in such situations.

Pro tip: never invest your own money into an Instagram ambassador opportunity. If they really want you, they’ll be paying you and not the other way around (image via

Those are just a handful of things to watch out for when it comes to spotting an Instagram ambassador scam. There are many red flags, and the more time you spend on Instagram and other social media, the more adept you’ll become at spotting them. Collaborating with an organization to be a brand ambassador can be an amazing opportunity. Just remember to keep your guard up, question everything, and do your research in advance! It’s better to miss out on an opportunity than find yourself the victim of a scam. Do you have any other advice for spotting an Instagram ambassador scam? Have you ever been the victim of one? Share your tips and experiences in the comments below!

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