We’ve all heard it before… influencers encouraging followers to like their posts to boost their engagement so they can track how successful a post has been. Well, Instagram has news for you – that all might be going away.
While still in the early testing stages, with Canada the location for the feature to be put in place, Instagram is removing the “like” counter from underneath posts. There will still be an option for Instagram users to see how many have liked and interacted with their post – a “view likes” link will take you to a page to show how many and who have liked.
The update will also hide the number of views a video posted on Instagram will receive.
Tech blogger Jane Manchun Wong acquired screenshots a few weeks ago that displayed the prototype in action.
“We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get,” Instagram displayed in one of the screenshots. “During this test, only you will be able to see the total number of likes on your posts.”
Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams co-created Daisie, a social media app for artists and creatives last year that doesn’t display a follower count on anyone’s account. Williams told Refinery29 that the decision to leave that feature out what deliberate. “When you have this reward-based system where you have view counts and followers, you start creating things those followers want, rather than creating things yourself as an artist,” she said.
What does this mean for influencers, marketers and business-owners?
Likes are currency when it comes to tracking success, failures and engagement when it comes to social media. Some people have careers just focused around tracking social media statistics. In the influencer world, creators are generally paid based on post engagement.
The owner of the account will still be able to access to total number of likes on a post, it also creates a lot of guessing games to the industry.
“We understand that this is important for many creators, and while this test is in exploratory stages, we are thinking through ways for them to communicate value to their brand partners,” an Instagram spokesperson told TechCrunch.
The like counter can be an encouraging tracker on social media but it is also linked to feelings of failure when a post doesn’t perform as well. Adam Alter, author of Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping us Hooked says that dopamine is actually produced in a user’s brain when they received likes.
The pressure to perform well on social media has gotten out of hand since the rise of influencers and the online creative space. Everyone wants to display the best version of themselves online and have half the population see it…
Let us know what you think about Instagram’s decision to prototype a “no likes counter” on their platform.