Hiding likes on Instagram posts is a feature that Instagram has been testing for some time. The feature was made available in select geographical locations earlier. However, since May 2021, the company has started a slow rollout to all its users.
The question that strikes the mind of many people: users, brands, or even influencers, is how the hiding of Instagram likes would affect the reach and the performance of the posts. The thing to clarify upfront is the algorithm of Instagram is not affected when a user decides to hide likes. This means that the post-reach is also not involved in any way. Then why was this concept rolled out? There are a few possible things that can result from this. Below mentioned are the ways this update may affect brands and influencers.
The company believes the new update can help in creating more quality content. The number of likes has created a scenario where everyone is trying to get more and more numbers. The competition seems to have been adversely affecting the quality of content. When users can no longer see the number of likes on the posts of competitors, they will concentrate more on the quality of the post. The user can see the number of likes on their content. This will help them understand how things are working with their audience.
As mentioned earlier, we would like to assert that the new update does not affect the algorithm on Instagram.
This is a doubt that worries a lot of the users and influencers on Instagram. Though other users may not be able to see the number of likes, Instagram keeps collecting all the data, including likes. The users will also be able to see the number of likes on each of their own content. Thus, we may not be able to see the number of likes, but the metrics will keep running the social media platform as usual. Engagement through the number of likes will be used to prioritize individual content on the feed.
The thing that can be seen to be getting affected by this update is collaboration. The collaboration between influencers and brands depends critically on the metrics. Once these are hidden, particularly the likes, the brands may not understand the performance. Influencer marketing has become one of the mainstays of promotion. Most brands are now jumping into influencer marketing. Instagram remains one of the favorite platforms for brands for this exercise. With the likes on posts hidden, the brands no longer understand which influencers would suit their campaign the most. The solution to this issue is vital if brands want to continue their influencer marketing over Instagram. A platform that can provide brands and influencers with hidden metrics will be essential for success of this model.
Hidden likes can indeed help the quality of content and reduce competition. However, brands and influencers might find it tough to collaborate with the lack of visibility of likes. This new update will, however, not impact influencer marketing if the data can be accessed through the platform being used for marketing.