Instagram can label 2019 as a successful year. With more than 1 billion users every month and as one of the most downloaded apps in the Apple App Store, Instagram can look back more than satisfied on 2019.
Yet we also have to look ahead to 2020, what will Instagram look like? Because the social media platform 2019 may (probably) close more than positively, the big question naturally follows: Will 2020 be the end of Instagram?
Two things in advance: I don’t have 10,000 followers on Instagram and I’m not an influencer.
I am very interested in Instagram because it is the only social media platform that I really like and also use on a daily basis.
That is why I want to make a prediction on the basis of a small study of what Instagram will look like in 2020.
But before I really answer this question, I first want to look ahead to the new features that will most likely come in 2020.
- Farewell to the like counter
One of the biggest updates on the schedule is hiding like counter. Like since April this year, Instagram has been busy experimenting with a small percentage of users in different countries such as Canada, Australia and Japan. But also for some Dutch users the likes have recently been hidden.
By hiding the like counter, users can see how many likes their own photos and videos get, but their followers do not see this number.
Instagram explains this limitation (or perhaps enlightenment):
“We want people to worry less about how many likes they get on Instagram and spend more time connecting with people they care about” – Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri.
- Prevent online harassment
Instagram will tackle bullying online. In July the platform presented a new feature that will take care of this. Using a smart AI tool in the comment section, Instagram wants to warn bullies or that they are aware of that nasty comment that they want to place under a photo or video any moment.
This user will then receive a notification with “Are you sure you want to post this? Learn more”. If the link is clicked, the user will be activated to use Instagram in a positive way. The hope is that the user will not post the comment.
- TikTok features
For those who are still unfamiliar with TikTok; TikTok is a social media platform with which short music videos can be made and shared. These videos have a length of 3 to 15 seconds.
In 2019, more than 500 million users were active on TikTok worldwide, especially young people. Due to the significant growth that TikTok is making, Instagram can no longer ignore this social media platform.
Instagram is therefore going to do something about it. The social media platform already has a reputation when it comes to copying features from competing apps, such as Snapchat ‘s Stories and face mask features .
It is therefore no surprise that the company has already taken the first step towards growing more towards TikTok. Instagram is in the process of adding a music lyrics feature to the Stories. With this lyric function, the lyrics are synchronized with the selected music.
In 2020 many more features from TikTok will probably find a place on Instagram.
Now that a number of future Instagram features have been explained, we come back to my question: Will 2020 be the end of Instagram?
To answer this right away, the answer is: no, Instagram has a lot on its schedule for 2020 and will therefore not disappear quickly. But with the planned new features a lot will change for some users.
Changes for Influencers
Do you use Instagram to earn money as an influencer? Then things will change for you in 2020.
Because the like counter will remain hidden with the photos and videos, this can pose a threat to current and potential influencers. This is because influencers are discovered by brands on the basis of the number of likes and the involvement they get on their photos and videos. But hiding the like counter makes it harder to measure whether a certain influencer is effective enough for a brand or not.
In short; this limitation in particular will determine in 2020 how interesting Instagram is for influencers who are still fully active and see results.
Measuring the comments, on photos and videos, will most likely make the value of the like counter take over?
Opportunities for the average user
Yet there are great opportunities for the average Instagram user. The platform wants to do more to tackle online harassment. If this new feature yields positive results, this can provide a more positive image for Instagram.
In addition, hiding the like counter can cause users to experience less pressure on the amount of likes they get, on a photo or video they post, on Instagram. As Instagram itself has indicated, they want their users to connect more with people they really care about.
Finally, with the addition of TikTok related features, more (young) users will remain active on Instagram.
Off to 2020
In short: 2020 will be an interesting year for Instagram and for the time being we don’t have to worry that this great adventure will end.