Social Media Marketing: What Hiding Likes Means For Brands

Social Media Marketing: What Hiding Likes Means For Brands

Many brands and influencers see the number of likes they receive from a post as a marker of their social media marketing campaigns success. However, that could all be about to change. This year Instagram announced it was running a test that would hide the total number of likes and video views its users in 8 countries.

Why has Instagram taken these measures and what does this mean for brands? Our Essex marketing company VerriBerri take a look.

The reason behind the ban.

According to Instagram, the reason to hide likes is so your friends and followers focus on photos and videos you share; not how many likes you get. This is due to a problem within the influencer marketing sector known as vanity metrics. Studies show that around 52% of influencers have bought followers, comments and likes, with 21% of this group claiming they would do this again. 

What this means for brands.

By taking away the option to view likes, Instagram hopes to remove fake popularity. Despite the benefits for general users, the advantages are less evident for businesses; who rely on likes as a way to track engagement from their target audience.

Currently Instagram will prioritise posts with the most likes. It is still unclear whether the ban will impact the current algorithm. Comments and reposts could soon be seen as more meaningful; having a bigger effect on a brands’ engagement.

Our teams’ thoughts.

As an Essex digital marketing agency, we’re constantly keeping up to date with the latest social media marketing trends. We believe that the hidden likes will damage influencers ability to market products on Instagram, as many currently rely on popularity metrics in order to be seen as successful. 

For brands, however, it’s a different story. The likes ban could actually benefit brands as they will no longer be competing with influencers. Followers will no longer be able to see how popular your individual posts are. Instead, followers will simply have to like your product based on the images they see; rather than playing a numbers game. 

If you would like more information about our social media marketing services, get in touch with our Essex media company today on +44(0)1376 386850.

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