TAKEAWAY: If Instagram removes public likes metric, marketers will look at clicks, view-through rates, and swipe-up engagements to dig out the best influencers for their marketing campaigns.
If Instagram permanently removes public likes – a test that went global Thursday – it will greatly impact the influencer marketing industry by forcing influencers to embrace more sophisticated marketing metrics.
Marketers will push even harder to evaluate influencers based on clicks, view-through rates and swipe-up engagements with stories, said Daniel Schotland, chief operating officer at influencer marketing platform Linqia.
“A like or an engagement isn’t a business result,” he said.
But likes help brands select the right influencers and avoid fake followers and fraud. Agencies who have access to like counts through Instagram’s API will stand out from those who don’t.
“Manual work is going to get a lot harder if likes are removed from public profiles,” said Mae Karwowski, CEO and founder at influencer marketing agency Obviously.
The push for better metrics and insights will drive more business toward microinfluencers – people with large, loyal followings – rather than celebrities that get lots of likes, but don’t have a personal connection with their audience. […]