Top 10 Tennis Players with the highest social interactions among fans

It has been an action packed month for tennis featuring the final grand slam of the year, the US Open. It was a grand slam of many upsets and great moments – Serena Williams was left chasing the elusive all time record of 24 grand slam singles titles, US Open men’s defending champion Novak Djokovic retired due to injury, crowd favorite Roger Federer suffered a shocking defeat in the quarterfinals and while 2018 US Open champion Naomi Osaka did not defend her title, she was lauded for her wonderful moment of sportsmanship with upcoming tennis sensation Coco Gauff. While new champions were crowned and history was made on court at this year’s US Open, there was much rearranging of ranks within the top 10s of social media as well.  

The meteoric rise of Bianca Andreescu

Rising 79 places to 9th rank is US Open women’s champion Bianca Andreescu. After winning the Canadian Open at the beginning of August, the Canadian teenager finished the US Open in style – by cinching her first grand slam victory. She is also a rising star on social media, gaining the most new followers (120k) among the top 10 tennis players of August (she further tripled her follower growth after her US Open victory, gaining 398k followers on her social channels). Bianca is an avid social media user and is active on her social media channels, posting content about her victories as well as her day to day life. Her post after her win in round 3 was the most popular in August with 86k interactions, followed by her instagram post featuring her title win at the Canadian Open with 75k interactions. (However after her win at the US Open, her interactions grew exponentially. Her post featuring her win at the US Open generated 235k social media engagements.) When it comes to sponsors, during the month of August, there were no mentions of her sponsors Nike, Head, BMW Canada or Copper Branch on her social channels, but her posts included many Nike logos, reinforcing the value of being on an athlete’s apparel. 

Rafael Nadal – a champion on and off the court

Leading the tennis rankings for August is the current US Open men’s champion, Rafael Nadal. He blew through his competition at the US Open in August, and ultimately won his 19th grand slam title putting him just one title behind Federer. He maintained an active social media presence and featured a varied collection of posts from the tournaments he played at as well as his day to day activities. During August, his social posts had 4.2M interactions and he gained over 103k new social media followers. Nadal is also good at promoting his sponsors with clear mentions of the sponsor brand, the brand’s hashtags or the brand product. Some of his top posts by social media interactions feature his sponsor brands such as Nike (329k interactions), Babolat (316k interactions) and Air Europa (254k). 

Male tennis players surge ahead 

When considering the top 10 tennis players of August, 6 among the top 10 were men. With the exception of Novak Djokovic who dropped one spot, all other male tennis players rose among the ranks with an increase in their social media interactions. The combined total interactions of the male players was 3.8 times more than that of the women players in the top 10. While a major share (64% of the combined interactions) can be attributed to popular tennis stars Nadal and Djokovic, other male players such as Nick Kyrigos and Stefanos Tsitsipas had higher social media interactions on their channels through better engagement with their followers. However, female athletes are not far behind. Lead by a combination of seasoned players like Maria Sharapova as well as rising stars Coco Gauff and Bianca Andreescu, female athletes are slowly gaining followers and engagements across their social channels. 

Wrap – up

August was an exciting month for tennis – well known star Nadal competed to move one step closer to surpassing Roger Federer’s 20 majors milestone, while rising star Bianca had an incredible run towards creating history as the first Canadian grand slam winner. With the major grand slams of the year done and dusted, it will be interesting to see how tennis players will use social media to drive value for their sponsors until the end of 2019. 

Hookit provides brands with the tools needed to evaluate the effectiveness of its sponsored properties on social media, educating a brand’s properties on the best practices needed to achieve its sponsorship goals, as well as identifying qualified potential properties that align with/help advance a brand’s goals.   

Rankings are based on data available on September 3, 2019 and is updated everyday.

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