You see, the like count on an Instagram post is just a marker, in a way like people queuing outside a shop or seeing a busy restaurant as you’re walking by.
It feeds the little sheep 🐑 inside of us and we think “I want to be part of that club!”
And we take notice of ads and posts more that have tons and tons of likes and naively think, “wow, this must be important, the world and its mother loves this.”
In reality, liking a post shows extremely low intent and liking posts has almost become a habitual part of using Instagram. There’s probably very little thought process prior to that big thumb press.
So what happens now?
Like any of the other changes to Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn etc. it’s important to pivot.
It’s now important to create engaging content that is going to encourage comments. This in effect replaces likes as the new marker.
And it actually has an opportunity to improve the effectiveness of social proof. By focusing on content that promote comments, engagement will now come with context, whether that be client testimonials or general feedback.
So embrace the change and think about how to encourage more comments on your content by using open questions; “Tell us what you think about x“, “What would you do with y?“,What are your tips for z?” are some pretty basic examples.