Posted | January 28th, 2020

The future of Influencer Marketing on Instagram?

The future of Influencer Marketing on Instagram?

Where is Influencer Marketing going on Instagram? 

Since Instagram announced the ‘removal of likes’ in 2019, the influencer marketing industry have been questioning what this would mean for the popular social platform. Whilst, initially many influencers, brands and marketing agencies were in a frenzy, and convinced this could mean an end to the influencer economy. Now the realisation is that this could bring even greater rewards to the sector.

The removal of likes could actually bring about great benefits to the genuine creators out there and help them bloom even further. 

Why the change?

After studies were carried out, the results rolled in and it was proved that Instagram is the worst platform for a person’s mental health.  These findings forced Instagram to take some responsibility and look to assess and improve the wellbeing of their users mental health.

Trials for the removal of likes started in the summer of 2019 in various countries. Australia being among the first to see the change, these tests have now been trialled all over the world and with positive responses. Instagram have started the ball rolling in getting the new feature update ready.

This now means that instead of the sole focus being on the ‘shallower’ metrics, people should feel more at ease on the platform. The hope is that disabling likes from being public, people will feel better about posting authentic content and uploading things “for the gram”.

How Will This Help Mental Health?

Lets face it, no matter how much you try to sustain from falling into the big trap of comparison, Instagram definitely makes it hard not to at times. What is now a breeding ground for low self- esteem, anxiety and FOMO, Instagram should hopefully have nothing but positive changes on a person’s mental health after the removal of likes is in place.

It has been argued that the comparisons users have to endure are more to do with the lifestyle of the creators against their own life and not about the amount of likes a person gets. However the hopes are to take away any anxiety or panic in the person that wants to post content. This may not have any effect on people that use the platform to consume content out there.

But one step towards positive change on mental health is better than none!


How will this affect Influencer Marketing?

The announced feature update has left a lot of people wondering how this affect the influencer marketing industry. Whilst influencer marketing is also still a baby in the marketing world, initially likes were used as a measure of a how high a creators influence was. However even prior to the announcement from Instagram many agencies and brands have already been moving away using likes as an indicator of influence. Other metrics such as engagement, clicks, saves and shares have proven to be more reliable in deciding on whether a creator really has the influence-factor or not!

It is highly likely that the change will benefit the influencer marketing agencies largely, as now the insights they will have to offer on creators will be measured on more valuable metrics. No more need to assess if somebody has bought likes or not.  

My final thoughts…

When there is change to better mental health and promote more authenticity, I am 100% in support of that, not only will this help to ease some of the low self esteem and anxiety some users feel, but taking away the likes means more authentic content from creators, which is really a right step (back) in the direction of bringing marketing back to its roots also.


By Yaz Boolaky


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