In contrary to what you might think, influencers have welcomed Instagram’s move to trial hiding the number of likes on posts. Experts predict that it will improve the social media landscape.
Last week at the Facebook, annual F8 conference, Instagram confirmed it is testing the feature among a small group in Canada.
Social media experts predict that it’s a step in the right direction from Instagram, and that the feature will probably be rolled out globally in the future.
The feature comes with several advantages; including an improved wellbeing of users who feel less pressured to create posts that ensure a lot of likes. It will also benefit influencers; this feature will change the Instagram environment. Human connection, self-expression and genuine engagement will become more important than simply generating as much likes as possible. The idea behind scraping likes from Instagram is supported by the popularity of stories, where views and engagement count and we don’t know how many others have seen stories and direct messaged about the story. We just enjoy the content.
So, with this feature we might be moving away from the believe that influences are as valuable as the amount of likes they attract. Making likes private could event make influencers more authentic, and consequently more appealing to brands? Brands will use other metrics to assess the relevance of influencers, likes and engagement are not the only metrics to asses the quality and relevance of the content published by influencers and brands.
It’s time influencer marketing focuses on quality over quantity, on engagement, the sentiment of comments, the authenticity of content and reach. Quality engagement will follow as long as content is authentic and good. This is how consumers decisions are influencers, via qualitative and inspiring content plus real connections between the influencer and their following.
Another reason influencers are supporting this move is because they aren’t immune to the impact that social media has on their wellbeing. Focusing on generating as much likes as possible is unhealthy.