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Athletes with the most Instagram followers worldwide 2020

Footballer Cristiano Ronaldo was the most-followed athlete on the photo-sharing platform Instagram with over 197 million followers. Ronaldo is also the overall most-followed person on Instagram, as well as on Facebook. According to InfluencerDB, second-ranked Lionel Messi had over 140 million Instagram followers.

Athletes on social media

Athletes are celebrities in their own right and have long since managed to make social media work for them. Many athletes use social media to connect with fans, but this is only one of the benefits of social media usage: most professional sportspeople have advertising and sponsorship contracts and social media provides them with an outlet to promote their preferred brands even further. Instagram posts of top athletes are big business. In June 2019, the average media value of an Instagram post by Cristiano Ronaldo was 861,304 U.S. dollars. In second place was Neymar, whose posts were worth half a million dollars.

Social media marketing

Due to the visual nature of the platform, Instagram is a particularly attractive channel for brands and marketers to promote their products. According to an industry survey, Instagram is the second-most popular social media platform used by marketers worldwide. The leading benefits of using social media for marketing purposes are increased exposure and traffic.

Most-followed athletes on Instagram worldwide as of January 2020

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Release date

January 2020



Survey time period

January 10, 2019

Special properties

according to InfluencerDB database, wider industry metrics may vary

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Statistics on "Instagram"

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