How to get more likes on Instagram and Facebook. These surprising insights show it’s not about your content

When will Instagram work? How about Facebook? Shockingly (or not) the twelve-year-old YouTuber cannot tell you how to get more likes

A quick Google on how to get more likes on Instagram will most likely generate the same results. You will find many strategies for effective marketing with social media. However, it will lead to the same outcome. A YouTube video of a guy called Zack, who looks about twelve, will kick off with a quick reminder to follow his account before he spends 35 minutes rambling on until he reveals his most treasured secret; you need to build great content! Thanks, Zack, but that’s like telling me I need to learn to write well if I want to win a Pulitzer Prize. Not helpful.

Zack is not alone. Every website, blog and video will say something similar about how to get more likes on Instagram and Facebook. So, is it the only thing you need to get your voice and account seen? When will Instagram work? As a digital analytics agency, we set off to investigate.

There are some very young people giving advice on complicated topics on the internet

12-year-old Zack might not be the best person to get advice from

How do you get more likes on Instagram and Facebook? Let’s investigate both platforms

We decided to compare Facebook against Instagram because they are both owned by the same company. If your content is all that matters to get an engaged audience, the number of likes should be similar across both platforms as long as you post the same. We analysed the post engagement of four health influencers by comparing the same content across Instagram and Facebook.

Mark Hyman

First up was the NY Times best-selling author and TV doctor Mark Hyman aka the George Clooney of medicine. On Instagram, Mark Hyman has 1.9m followers compared to 1m on Facebook. Reviewing the same post on both platforms, we assumed the engagement would be approximately double on Instagram. However, on Instagram, he had 20,100 likes and 290 comments compared to 2,700 likes and 76 comments on Facebook. That’s an astonishing 644.4% increase in engagement on Instagram. So, how does he get so many more likes on Instagram? It was clearly not about his content.

We investigated how to get more likes on Instagram and Facebook by looking at Mark Hyman social profiles

Mark Hyman aka the George Clooney of medicine

David Perlmutter

Celebrity Doctor and author of “The Grain Brain”, which sounds like an awful disease, Dr David Perlmutter’s results were not better. On Facebook, Dr Perlmutter has 426k followers, considerably more than the 173k followers he has managed to attract on Instagram. However, despite being 146% bigger on Facebook, his engagement was 384% higher on Instagram. On Facebook, he received only 323 likes and 13 comments for the same post, which received 1563 likes and 17 comments on Instagram.

Ben Greenfield

To ensure we didn’t miss the memo mentioning doctors are the only cool people on Instagram, we decided to diversify our search. We reviewed the engagement of another NY Times best-selling author and biohacking icon, Ben Greenfield. On Instagram speedo loving Ben Greenfield has 380k followers compared to 189k on Facebook. However, again the same results came back. On Instagram, he received 1329 likes and 55 comments for the same post that received only 74 likes and 9 comments on Facebook. That’s a 1696% increase in engagement on Instagram.

Is Ben Greenfields love of speedos the answer to how to get more likes on Instagram and Facebook?

Biohacker and speedo loving Ben Greenfield

Higher Dose

To ensure Ben Greenfield’s speedo photos were not affecting the social media results, we investigated the biohacking company Higher Dose. Can Speedos ever be a good look unless you are called Michael Phelps? Higher Does sell a range of health equipment, including infrared sauna blankets. On Facebook, Higher Dose has 7886 followers, considerably less than the 105k followers they have on Instagram.

The result? Unless you are an eternal optimist, who still believes Dawsons Creek will one day have a happy episode (it ended in 2003), you will have guessed the outcome was not good. Even considering their amount of followers is much lower on Facebook, it does not explain the differences in engagement for the same post. They received 3 likes and 4 comments on Facebook. On Instagram, they received 309 likes and 26 comments. Suddenly the doctors on Facebook were starting to look as popular as Kylie Jenner! How do they get more likes on Instagram? We have not been as mystified since Dawson broke up with Joey.

We did try to find other female health influencers, aside from Higher Dose, who are big on both Instagram and Facebook. However, this proved almost as challenging as the time we tried to analyse which type of people decide to go on “Married at First Sight”. We are still investigating…

We are trying to find out why some people apply to the show “Married at First Sight”

How do you get more likes on Instagram and Facebook? The results

From our small sample size, the results clearly illustrated that it’s not all about content. It’s about your reach. Reach is social media jargon for how many people the platform decides to show your content. Just because you have 1k followers does not mean all your followers will see your content.

Effective marketing for social media needs reach. Great content is not the biggest contributor to getting seen and more likes on Instagram and Facebook. Surprisingly getting more followers is not the solution either. However, many digital marketing agencies in London and globally still seem to believe this. To prove this point, we set up a health account on both Facebook and Instagram. To really test our question, how to get more followers on Instagram and Facebook, we ran some adverts on Facebook to get over 500 followers. Our Instagram account only had 50 followers. The same post reached only 14 people on Facebook, whilst 72 people saw it on Instagram. Our Insta post received eight likes, but as you may have guessed, our Facebook post received no engagement.

We also performed our own experiment

To get more likes on Instagram and Facebook, you need reach

So, if you are thinking about your strategic digital marketing playbook, and how to get more likes, reach is the thing to consider. We are an agency for digital marketing that specialises in data insights. Therefore, we analyse large quantities of data across our client’s digital ecosystem. Our analysis includes various social media platforms. Understanding that different platforms have different algorithms helps explain why reach can change drastically. Understanding these algorithms and the steps you can take is complex. Using our digital ecosystem data insights machines, we review various social media platforms to help inform your social media strategies.

Trying to find out how to get more likes on Instagram and Facebook can be frustrating

So, next time you think you have cracked the social media code because 12-year-old Zack has told you his top-secret – stop. His knowledge on how do you get more likes on Instagram and Facebook, is the same as his insight into what women want. Clueless.Creating great content and hoping it will be visible is like driving a red Ferrari in the Sahara Desert. Nobody cares because nobody is there. You need to be visible so people can see your content. Therefore, focus your attention on increasing your reach.

If you want to know more about our insights and the reports we provide, please feel free to reach out to us at or follow us on Instagram @antlerzz_longevity


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