As early as this week, Instagram is planning to begin testing the removal of “Like” counts for US users. CEO Adam Mosseri announced this news at WIRED25 in San Francisco last week.
The possibility that Instagram could possibly take away “Likes” could disrupt the influencer community, as the social proof metric goes private. Without being able to see the Likes of a post, influencers and their agencies would have to change and adapt in order to show their value to brands. Despite the outward negativity of removing Likes, it could also have a positive side. It would allow both brands and influencers to shift to deeper-level-engagement and outcome metrics beyond something as low as a “like.”