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Hiding ‘likes’ on Instagram will bring big changes to Influencer Marketing

By now, most of you have heard the news, first shared by Wired and now confirmed across several media outlets, including Instagram itself. It is official —Instagram will rollout its policy of hiding “likes” for users in the United States. We knew this was coming as they started hiding ‘likes’ on Instagram in several other countries before rolling it out here in the United States.

Understandably, many parties are concerned about how this new Instagram policy will affect the livelihood of social media marketing and influencers. Instagram removing likes will absolutely change the way businesses and marketers work with influencers. There will be lots of great changes —and some not so great. Here are some instant consequences the removal of Instagram likes will have on influencer marketing.

Hiding likes on Instagram will change the way we approach influencer marketing.

What does Instagram hiding likes mean for businesses using Influencer Marketing? 

  1. Authentic engagement will mean more than ever: Without vanity metrics on Instagram, authentic engagement in the form of comments, sharing, and saving of your posts will become more valuable.
  2. You will need to modify your Influencer Marketing KPIs: Since the hustle of creating “likeable” content will fade, businesses will be relying on reading comments and getting Influencers to share their backend stats on story views, post saves, etc. There are other platforms, such as Raven, Later and Hubspot, who can provide businesses with engagement and other social media metrics. Note* Influencers should still be able to see ‘likes’ in their insights. It will only be hidden from their followers.
  3. Long-term partnerships will become more valuable: Engaging in partnerships rather than one-off posts will become a necessary new norm for working with influencers. This will provide more value to both parties and insure quality content and invested influencers.
  4. Quality won’t change: Despite the rumors, the removal of “likes” on Instagram will not affect the type of content influencers share on their feed. Influencers are artists and creators. Their brand is based on how they visually represent themselves on their social media channels and an Instagram feed. The absence of likes won’t take away the fact that Influencers and Bloggers are brands themselves, and they are not going to change up content just because they are no longer able to track likes.
  5. Fake metrics will become more obvious: With the removal of likes on Instagram it will become more apparent what accounts have an authentic following and which ones have purchased likes and followers in the past. 

If you are an Influencer or use Influencer Marketing as part of your overall strategy, don’t freak. Change is difficult. Stay on top of the changes Instagram’s removal of likes will have on your marketing plan. Adjust any current plan or partnerships you have for influencer marketing and remember: change is good if you adapt for it.

Want to tray influencer Marketing for your company? Here are 5 ways to implement influencers marketing into your small business marketing strategy.

You can also read more about the changes happening on Instagram this year on my previous post.

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