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The dire warning an influencer manager has for Instagram as they remove the ‘like count’

EXCLUSIVE: The dire warning an influencer manager has for Instagram as they remove the ‘like count’ – as she warns of an unprecedented rise in ‘talent buying FAKE followers’

It’s been seven days since Instagram removed the ‘like counter’ for Australian users, and the move could be even more disastrous for influencers than first imagined. 

With many social media stars already losing followers and seeing drops in their engagement levels, an influencer talent manager fears things will only get worse.

Lucy Ronald, from the agency Born Bred, told Daily Mail Australia that one possible repercussion of Instagram’s controversial update will be a rise in ‘fake followers’.  

Expert: Lucy Ronald, a talent manager for influencers, says that Instagram's removal of the 'like counter' may lead to an influx of stars buying fake followers. Pictured: Brooklyn Kelly

Expert: Lucy Ronald, a talent manager for influencers, says that Instagram’s removal of the ‘like counter’ may lead to an influx of stars buying fake followers. Pictured: Brooklyn Kelly 

‘Influencers may be inclined to purchase “fake followers” now,’ she said. 

Lucy explained that it was previously possible to tell who had fake followers due to ‘the like-to-follower ratio’, but due to the recent change influencers can’t ‘be called [out] for it as easily’.

Without the visible ‘like count’, influencers may be able to fabricate their numbers in a bid to secure lucrative endorsements, with the deceit not as easily detected.   

Lucy stressed that the removal of the ‘like counter’ is as concerning for brands as it is for influencers, and will change the whole industry forever.  

Changes: Lucy explained that it was previously possible to tell who had fake followers due to 'the like-to-follower ratio', but due to the recent change influencers can't 'be called [out] for it as easily'. Pictured: Rochelle Fox

Changes: Lucy explained that it was previously possible to tell who had fake followers due to ‘the like-to-follower ratio’, but due to the recent change influencers can’t ‘be called [out] for it as easily’. Pictured: Rochelle Fox

‘I think that we will have to re-structure the way we look at measuring the success of an influencer collaboration moving forward,’ Lucy added.

‘And look more at the reach of posts, generation of sales, as well as the quality of content that is being produced.’

Speaking of her talent roster, Lucy explained: ‘Agencies like ourselves will still be able to see the back end of our influencer’s content, through analytics and metrics.

‘This will still be accessible by the influencers, which means that brands and clients will still be able to be shown how well a post has performed.’

It is more likely that ‘micro-influencers’, up-and-coming stars and people without representation may turn to buying ‘fake followers’ to try and get ahead, says Lucy.

Update: Lucy stressed that the removal of the 'like counter' is as concerning for brands as it is for influencers, and will change the whole industry forever. Pictured: Brooklyn Kelly

Update: Lucy stressed that the removal of the ‘like counter’ is as concerning for brands as it is for influencers, and will change the whole industry forever. Pictured: Brooklyn Kelly 

'New approach: I think that we will have to re-structure the way we look at measuring the success of an Influencer collaboration moving forward,' Lucy added. Pictured: Josh Moss and Amelia Marni

‘New approach: I think that we will have to re-structure the way we look at measuring the success of an Influencer collaboration moving forward,’ Lucy added. Pictured: Josh Moss and Amelia Marni

Ashleigh Ross, a 19-year-old influencer from Sydney who is represented by Born Bred talent, told Daily Mail Australia she was happy to see the change implemented.

She said that removing the ‘like counter’ has taken away the ‘stress and competition of people that create content as their full time job’.

‘It will be beneficial to the youth market of Instagram who have grown up around these apps and sometimes find validation through a number,’ she added. 

'It will be beneficial to the youth market': Ashleigh Ross (pictured), a 19-year-old influencer from Sydney, told Daily Mail Australia she was happy to see the change implemented

‘It will be beneficial to the youth market’: Ashleigh Ross (pictured), a 19-year-old influencer from Sydney, told Daily Mail Australia she was happy to see the change implemented

Daily Mail UK

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