As a small business owner, you likely rely on Facebook to market your products, connect with customers, and build your brand identity. However, as we enter 2023, more entrepreneurs are realizing that showcasing vanity metrics like Facebook likes may not align with their business values or goals.
Let‘s discuss how hiding likes can transform your social media strategy to be more authentic, improve mental health, and foster genuine engagement.
The Mental Health Impacts of Likes
The constant pressure to gain likes and followers on social media has proven detrimental effects on mental health.
- According to the Royal Society for Public Health, 81% of 14-24-year olds report social media negatively impacts their mental health.
- A 2017 study by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that the more people use social media, the more likely they are to experience depression and anxiety.
- Constant online comparison is linked to lower self-esteem and feelings of inadequacy. Likes often determine self-worth.
As an entrepreneur, poor mental health will inevitably affect your business success. Hiding likes is a simple yet powerful way to improve your social media experience.
How I Hid Likes to Improve My Business Content
Let me share my own story. As the owner of a boutique bakery, I relied heavily on Facebook and Instagram for marketing. At first, I became obsessed with getting the highest engagement on my posts.
I would spend hours analyzing what got more likes and deliberately create that type of content. But it made social media feel inauthentic and draining.
Once I hid likes on my posts, it became easier to share content that expressed my brand‘s unique personality vs chasing trends. Baking imperfect yet delicious treats that reflect my values resonated more with my target customers.
My mental health improved vastly when I stopped equating self-worth with vanity metrics. While my following has grown slower, engagement from real customers is far more meaningful.
Tips for More Authentic Social Media as an Entrepreneur
Here are some tips on using social media in an authentic way that engages your niche when you hide likes and followers:
- Post varied content – don‘t just share promotional material but give glimpses into your brand personality, values, and unique identity.
- Engage personally – respond to all comments, ask questions, and interact, don‘t just post and leave.
- Share behind-the-scenes – give fans a peek at your production, facilities, employees, or business events.
- Spotlight customers – repost user-generated content, recognize loyal customers, and feature testimonials.
- Convey purpose – showcase how your business helps people and works towards a greater mission.
The Positive Impacts of Hiding Likes
Studies reveal that hiding likes and followers creates more positive user experiences.
- After Instagram hid likes in Canada, only 2.9% of users said it made the platform less enjoyable.
- Facebook found that hiding like counts resulted in less depressive feelings among users.
- According to Instagram researchers, people engage more with topics relevant to them vs most popular posts when likes are hidden.
- Hiding metrics leads to less targeted harassment related to posting unpopular opinions.
An Ethical Approach for Businesses
For businesses, hiding likes reflects an ethical social media philosophy:
- It shows valuing mental health over vanity metrics.
- It respects authentic expression over mass conformity.
- It displays responsibility for how your platform presence impacts society.
- It focuses on quality connections, not just reach and frequency.
Adopting this approach builds customer loyalty more than flashy engagement metrics ever could.
As you grow your business in 2023, I encourage you to hide likes and followers. See how much positivity it brings to your brand and your own mental health.
What do you think about this strategy? Have you tried hiding likes on your business accounts? I‘d love to hear your perspectives in the comments.
Sources: Royal Society for Public Health, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Instagram, Facebook, Social Media Today, Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology