Everyone’s talking about it and here are my thoughts. I found out in the most bizarre way that Instagram was going to start hiding likes. My husband sent me a photo of a large breasted chick in a bikini and said, “not the chick, read the article.” Of course the first thing I saw were these massive breasts and a thin ass waist. Once I stopped staring at her boobs I finally clicked the link and read the article. Out of every platform there is I found out Instagram was going to hide likes from non-other than Barstool Sports. Random AF.
How do I feel about it? I’m kinda not mad at it. I’ll keep it real, I think about likes on the daily. Do I obsess over likes? Shit, maybe. When the algorithm changed I definitely began getting tripped up over it more. As an influencer it’s really frustrating that the amount of followers you have is NEVER the amount of people that will see your post. What most people don’t know is that through our business insights we can see the exact reach of our photos and it’s never the number of followers you have. With that said…the lower the reach, the lower the likes, and the higher probability that you’ll get pissed. When it comes to likes and comments influencers get frustrated. It’s a blow to the ego even when you know it’s not your fault.
On the other hand I’m not nearly as bad as others when it comes to likes. I know people who will upload a photo and then delete it if it doesn’t get as many likes as they want. Hell I’ve known people who deleted their entire Instagram account based off the fact that they are tired of not getting likes. That stupid little double tap/heart means a lot to some people and the obsession is very unhealthy.
I’m sure there is gonna be a way around this anyways. That’s why people created comment pods, like bots, or bought their likes. We’ll find away around this, maybe it’s comment only pods or maybe brands will consider total engagement just the comments, who knows.
Maybe Instagram hiding likes really isn’t a bad thing. It will give people a chance to stop obsessing over the engagement and go back to what we loved about Instagram in the first place and that’s the content.
Now on the flip side as the Director of Social Media likes mean something to me, it means engagement. The total likes and comments someone gets can sway my decision most of the time if I want to work with them. No brand really wants to work with an influencer if their engagement is total shit. If you have 100k and only get 200 likes we have a problem. Unless you are content driven and just want gorgeous photos for you to repurpose than the likes shouldn’t really matter.
Working on the brand side and also being an influencer I’ve always said one thing, “content is key.” It’s important to try your very best to always create killer content not only yourself, but for the brand. Working on the brand side we always need killer content for our feed, website, and digital ads and if we have an influencer ally that can help us with this than to me they are more valuable than their engagement.
Who knows how long this Instagram bubble will last. Rather than being just an influencer, focus on being a content creator. This will open up other doors for you if this influencer bubble pops. Be someone a brand wants to hire because you create killer content. Also remember not to neglect your blog either. Before there were influencers we we’re bloggers first and no matter what happens to the gram you’ll own your blog forever.
I think as an influencer we’ve all lost sight of why and where it all started. It started with with a platform to see pretty pictures. I’m going to focus on not getting caught up in the likes and bounce back to a healthy environment. I’m excited to see how it all pans out. For the people who are against hiding likes I’d get use to it real quick. If Instagram hasn’t gotten rid of the algorithm than hiding likes may be here to stay. Good luck everyone.