Some of you with Instagram accounts may have noticed that the little thing under your post looks unnoticeably yet so obviously different. Instagram has rolled out an update where it hides your likes on your posts. This update is currently still in its testing phase, and only certain countries or accounts are affected by it.
This is what it looks like with no likes displayed.
So, the question here is, will this affect your social media presence? Is this a good thing or a bad thing? In their defence, Instagram’s reason for removing the number of likes on your post and the number of views on your video is to improve the lives of consumers. They also quote “we want your followers to focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get.”
Currently, the countries affected with this update are Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan and New Zealand. There are also users in Hong Kong reportedly don’t see the number of likes anymore.
How will this update affect your social media presence? And how are the users reacting to this?
While some people are reacting negatively to it, claiming “nobody asks for this”, some people love this new update- giving them less anxiety to keep checking on how many “likes” their posts have achieved.
Influencers and KOLs are making a huge deal out of this because they claim to rely on the engagement rates as their KPIs when it comes to sponsored posts. Just like the number of followers they get, the number of likes is equally essential to them to prove that they have high engagement rates.
Does this matter? This is exactly what Instagram is trying to banish. The obsession with the number of likes on users’ posts.
@kyliejenner with over 8million likes in a post
How will it look for the world of marketing without likes displaying?
Hiding the likes on Instagram posts will help boost authenticity in the posts and might resolve the problem of fake data. For years, users have been buying likes to give their profile a boost and to appear relevant. Without the display of the number of likes, the pressure of needing to keep up with Instagram likes can be deterred. Social media can now be authentic and postings don’t have to be so heavily planned and curated- just post whatever you like!
Everyone is now equal when the likes are hidden. You’d be surprised at how many people’s self-esteem relies on the number of likes they get on one post. The anxiety caused by waiting on the likes to keep rolling in is a real thing and can be considered worrying. With the likes hidden, this issue can be defeated when users can post without thinking and worrying about the number of likes they would get.
In conclusion, the removal of likes does not negatively affect your social media presence. Instead, from a positive perspective, users are more likely sharing their posts with more freedom. They will no longer be bounded with the idea of “more likes equal higher self-esteem”.
As we’re marching into the final quarter of the year 2019, it is not a surprise that there are many “trends” circulating in the social media world. You might just shrug and scroll or tap next to these trends but what you don’t know is, these trends will help your brand stay relevant and ahead of the competition. Trends are effective because it represents the “now” and everyone is jumping on the bandwagon to stay significant in social media platforms.
Let’s dive into the 2019 trends made popular in social media and get your social media growing with followers and engagements!
Adding Animations To Your Stories & Posts
Instagram has been rolling out many new features and it has made the platform so interesting to use. Simply adding the stickers, GIF, music and or AR feature to your posts and it immediately animates a boring ol’ post into something interesting. People are more likely drawn to colorful images and videos and with the use of these trends, you’ll draw more engagement and create a dynamic experience on your stories.
Adding Subtitles/ Closed Captions To Videos
Admit it, most of the time your phone is on silent mode and you can’t be bothered to turn up the volume to watch a video. A lot of times when people are on their social media, they are most likely in public places like being on the train, eating out, waiting in line, etc. Some may argue that they could use their earphones but be real, how often do you take them out.
It is almost a MUST to add subtitles to your videos- whether it’s on Facebook, Instagram or Youtube. Up to 85% of the videos on social media platforms are being watched without sound.
With these subtitles added on, you’ll be surprised to see how much of an increase your engagement gets and it also improves your viewers’ attention span. Bonus point: having subtitles on your videos and content are more user-friendly for people with hearing impairment.
Longer Videos on Instagram with IGTV
Remember the horrible days when Instagram would only allow uploading videos of only up to 1 minute? How limited our contents were back then? Everything had to be crammed into a minute and that was not enough, obviously. Luckily for us, Instagram heard our frustrations and answered our prayers. Thus, IGTV was born!
With IGTV, we no longer have to succumb to the limited 1-minute content, we now have the freedom of up to 10 minutes! Are you a verified account? Well, good news, you get up to 60 minutes long! While this is celebratory, always remember that nobody wants to watch a video that’s 3 minutes long. While 2 minutes would be the ideal amount, we’re quite pushing the human attention span here. In order to have one person stay till the end of the video, you have to grab their attention within the first 8 seconds of the video.
So, make your IGTV content worthwhile because you can either make it or break it.
Nevertheless, we’re grateful for this!
Product Tagging & Shoppable Posts
This…THIS really comes in handy if your brand has an e-commerce website. With the convenience of displaying your product to the most-used social media platform aka Instagram, why not make it a one stop shop? With the product tagging feature, you can link your website to your Instagram account and watch those shoppers rolling in.
Similar to user tagging, product tagging allows you to tag the item directly and when your followers tap on the tag, it opens up to the exact item page on your website. Shoppers can now shop directly from that Instagram post without leaving the app.
Color-blocking & Grid Planning Your Feed
There’s nothing more pleasing and attractive than landing on some Instagram account that looks like it has its life figured out. Well, in this case, it’s the amount of thought and planning one has put into making their feed look aesthetically perfect. This might not be news to you, many influencers and big brands play around their feed- alternating posts, color themes, micro-color blocking and more.
An aesthetically impressive feed tells a lot about your brand. It subconsciously implants the impression that your brand is putting in effort and a lot of strategic planning is done. A beautiful feed will get visitors tapping on that “Follow” button in no time, hence, giving you more potential customers to your brand.
Incorporating Memes In Your Content
Yes, memes (pronounced as meems, not mi-mi) are taking over the world. Everyone loves a good, funny meme especially your potential customers- the millenials. While memes are very trendy, it is also very fast-paced. A new meme could be born within minutes to seconds but a good meme gets caught on for a long time, long enough for you to ride on it.
Take for example the latest celebrity meme that has the world talking about – Kylie Jenner and “Rise and Shine”. It all started with a Youtube video of Kylie Jenner giving an office tour and she walks into her daughter, Stormi’s playroom and nonchalantly melodize these three simple words “rise and shine”. It went viral and almost everyone on the internet is singing to the “tune”.
And what did the billionaire do? As what a smart entrepreneur would do, Kylie Jenner laughed about it and turned a meme into a business opportunity. You can now buy that meme merch which is a hoodie on her website. What. A. Freaking. Genius.
While trends are ever changing and gets replaced in no time, it is vital that your brand leverage on trends to be relevant in the social media world. While not all trends may fit your brand’s identity, there are tons of other trends that will fit perfectly. Don’t be afraid to play around, at least you’ve tried!