How Many New Twitter Followers Is A Gold Medal Worth?


After three weeks of sporting action, the Olympics have come to an cease, however there’s one closing competition nevertheless to go: who’s received the gold medal for being best at Twitter?

Of route, a few wearing purists might argue that the lumps of steel striking around athletes’ necks would possibly suggest something, but let’s face

it: no-one goes to care again about canoeing or race on foot for at the least 4 greater years. And when we’re watching in Team GB roll into the Tokyo velodrome,

someone will need to explain the cope with the weird motorcycle guy all once more, as we’ll have forgotten. So is there any real cost in a medal?

The actual measure of Olympic success is something a whole lot extra vital: Twitter followers. Which athletes are leaving the games as our new countrywide treasures?

Who can be placed to leverage their higher profile into profitable endorsements? Who, at some point of the video games, were given the fine #numbers? And what’s the exact social media cachet of prevailing a medal?


To discover, I took the listing of 353 Rio 2016 competition from the Team GB Twitter list and wrote a few code that might note the variety of followers every has each 15 mins. So from approximately

Day 3, when I first set my script going for walks, we will now see who picked up the maximum fans – and when. And we also can workout the approximate social media bonus of winning a medal.

So first off, who accumulated the most new fans at some point of the Olympics? The answer, unsurprisingly, is Laura Trott, who picked up gold in each the Women’s omnium and Women’s group pursuit.

She added a large eighty three,000 followers. Her accomplice, Jason Kenny, may also have picked up 3 golds at the games, however he couldn’t fit her Twitter attraction – 1/3 in the charts,

he handiest introduced around fifty one,000 followers – even though this greater than doubled his Twitter following.

Tom Daley most effective managed to select up a bronze in the pool, but he changed into much better at Twitter

– as he brought an additional 60,000 followers – even though he may not word, as he already had 2.5 million people watching him. Mo Farah is inside the same boat

– he delivered an extra forty seven,000 followers to his already wonderful 1.25 million. Double gold gymnastics winner Max Whitlock did properly, too – as with Jason Kenny, he didn’t simply win more than one golds, but also nearly doubled his social media footprint.

The strength of the games to shine a mild on a few much less-famous figures changed into evident, too. In percentage terms, the huge winner of the video games became bike owner Callum Skinner

. When he went to Rio he had simply over 2,000 followers – but has left no longer simply with a gold and a silver medal, but additionally thirteen,000 extra fans – a seven hundred% raise! Bryony Page,

who won a silver medal on the trampoline also acquired a Twitter soar – growing her fans from 1,300 to over 6,000. Bronze-medallist boxer Joshua Buatsi also wins the bronze for Twitter cachet too –

with a four hundred% growth in his fans from 2,four hundred to more than 10,000. So don’t be surprised if you see any of these athletes tweeting suspiciously enthusiastic endorsements of merchandise inside the near destiny – they’re now very treasured.

Big bangs

What’s also amusing to see is while the will increase came about. Look at the chart under showing the total number of Laura Trott and Jason Kenny’s follower counts – they both shot up, unsurprisingly, on the night time they raced.

Plotted another manner, we can see what number of followers the pair piled on at 15-minute periods over the path of the few days they had been inside the highlight. Incredibly, among 00:15 and 00:30 on 17 August – just as they gained their medals, Trot

t brought greater than 11,000 fans in only a area of an hour. Kenny delivered eight,000.

Tweeting for gold

But forget about the evaluation – let’s recognition at the competition handy. What’s the effect in your following if you bag your self a medal? Obviously this shouldn’t be taken into consideration in any way scientifically rigorous

but in case you take the variety of new fans gathered via gold medalists, it appears that first vicinity will earn you on average a further nine,196 followers. If you are taking silver medalists (discounting athletes who additionally received gold),

they brought on average 3,593 fans. And doing the identical for bronze (once more discounting multi-medalists who also picked up a gold or silver), it seems to feature a further 6,230 fans.

That’s right – on first bypass, it seems a bronze medal can be more treasured than a silver medal. Is it due to the fact absolutely everyone likes a plucky outsider who just manages to scrape a medal, like Bianca Walkden within the taekwondo? Or should this really be Tom Daley’s already-good sized reputation skewing the outcomes?

Friendship network

Okay, excellent, I realize what you’re questioning. This is too cynical – why should we be playing athletes off in opposition to every other? Isn’t the Olympics sincerely about friendship and togetherness? But however… can’t this be a opposition too?

So I determined to discover who the maximum popular contributors of Team GB had been by using analysing who our Rio athletes had been following.

It appears that Jessica Ennis is the most famous member of Team GB via a ways, with 164 fans from her 353 tweeting peers. Cycling alumni Chris Hoy is in second. Andy Murray and Mo Farah are each popular too –

as is, perhaps fairly, the lesser-regarded sprinter Adam Gemeli. He have to have operating the room lower back within the Athletes’ Village.

Curiously, the most–famous non–athlete or sporting character is, umm, Jeremy Clarkson with 86 Team GB fans, and James Corden and Jack Whitehall are also inexplicably famous. Ah nicely – I guess it is going to show that even our greatest heroes have some flaws.

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