Well not completely…
If you are an avid Instagram user you may have noticed the social networking platform has recently begun testing a new feature which hides the number of likes on all photo and video posts. Liking other users posts and receiving likes from others is still possible, however, the like count is no longer visible on posts in your feed and other users aren’t able to see the total number of likes your content receives.
This test started in Canada a few months ago and has now been introduced to Australia last week in an attempt to encourage users to share authentic content that builds connections with people rather than competing with them. With the like count hidden, users can post more freely without the pressure of posting what they think will perform best or worrying about the best times to post and won’t feel judged if they have a drop in engagement.
Although Instagram states this change is meant to help users feel more comfortable expressing themselves and therefore improve their emotional wellbeing and mental health, many argue the social media platform is only removing the like count so they can control engagement and drive businesses to invest more money through paid advertising.
What’s the impact for business?
Fortunately, the change won’t affect measurement tools and businesses will still be able to view their likes and other engagement metrics however, taking the focus off numbers will force businesses to evaluate the quality of their content rather than the analytics. Although businesses will now need to invest more into the content they produce in order to get the same results, it will be easier to compete with well-established accounts with large followings particularly for small or new businesses.
It is the influencers that will be impacted the most as they rely heavily on their likes to attract brands to work with them. For many, Instagram is a source of income with the number of likes on a post representing their success and status on the platform which they then generate a profit from.
Luckily for them, there are better metrics that businesses and content creators can utilise than just likes. Quality content is more important than ever to catch people’s attention.As a business or brand you should be focusing on creating value, relevancy and impact to engage with your audience as opposed to just creating content that you think will receive likes.
Don’t know where to start? We’ve got you covered.
At Digital Freak, crafting unique and valuable content guaranteed to boost engagement is what we do best! Contact us today to start getting noticed on Instagram.