Tala Kattan - Instagram Likes Post

Show me the ♡: Do Instagram likes really matter?

3 reasons why a Like-less Gram’ could be a positive move.

Facebook’s F8 developer conference took place in May. Online privacy – across all platforms – was a big theme. Sandstorm was fascinated by Instagram’s announcement to hide likes, now being tested in Canada.

Instagram is the 3rd most popular social media network – it has 1 billion monthly users, so it should be an integral part of your social media strategy.

The social media team at Sandstorm considered the impact of hiding likes and came up with 3 potentially positive outcomes:


“We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your post gets.” explains Adam Mosseri at the F8 conference noting that only the account holder can see the number of likes.  However, it is still possible for your followers to manually count your likes, so it is not entirely hidden.

We like that Instagram wants to bring attention to content rather than likes; at the same time, we measure the resonance of our posts with this feature.

As a matter of necessity, content marketers require this input to gauge need and relevance. This importantly informs future posts.  

If your organization has other [effective] means of acquiring this information, this change will keep viewership squarely concerned about your message rather than the number of likes your content has managed to garner.


Instagram explained the idea is about creating a less pressurised environment where people feel comfortable expressing themselves.  The pressure to put out content that is ‘popular’ can increase anxiety, especially for teenagers.

Many individuals and businesses buy likes – this move by Instagram forces these content providers to refocus on the quality and relevance of the message itself.

At the same time, this move worries Influencers and businesses as likes have become a status symbol of success. We predict that taking the likes away can reinvent this social platform to provide a fair playground for accounts that have amazing content but don’t have a big following.

The concept to keep Instagram true and genuine is wonderful, but in practice, this may backfire causing less engagement.  We are eager to hear the feedback on the effect of engagement from the first testers.


Creating and building a community is key to any brand’s success. Building deep connections with your followers on Instagram [or any platform] is important, This shift will force companies to look at their existing followers and engage them more meaningfully with a view to understanding what content they are really interested in.

Since this feature is still being tested, there is still uncertainty on whether it will be rolled out globally.  Tell us what you think of this move in the comments section below.

Over to you…

Do you have any more reasons to add to our thoughts above? Share in the comments below…

Tala Kattan
About Tala Kattan
Tala is Managing Director of our North American operations. She also oversees the ePR and branded content marketing partnerships for our global clients.
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