Study reveals McIlroy is the most influential BBC Sports Personality of the Year nominee of 2023, earning big bucks from sponsored posts.

New data reveals that Rory McIlroy is the highest-earning BBC Sports Personality of the Year nominee on social media, potentially earning up to £13,500 per sponsored Instagram post.  

Research conducted by casino site examined the Instagram profiles of the six nominees to establish which sports star is the most influential on social media and how much they could earn per sponsored post.   

The data revealed that Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy is the most influential nominee. The 34-year-old golfer is a four-time major winner and has the highest Instagram following of all the nominees, with over 2.8 million followers. McIlroy has the potential to earn £13,500 per sponsored Instagram post: the highest potential social media earnings of all the nominees.

Of the top five most influential nominees, Manchester United’s Mary Earps was in third place. The Nottingham-born goalkeeper, who won the Golden Glove award at the 2023 Women's World Cup, has the third-highest following of 727,400, and the potential to earn up to £4,800 per sponsored post.

She was followed by heptathlete and indoor pentathlete Katerina Johnson-Thompson, also known as KJT. The two-time world champion and double Commonwealth Games champion in heptathlon could earn up to £2,200 per post thanks to her 268,900 followers.

Tudor Turiceanu, Chief Editor for commented on the findings:  “It’s great to see a range of British sporting talent being celebrated again with this prestigious award. All of the six nominees are deserving of the trophy and hopefully, all the sports being recognised will see a rise in funding and participation. 

The nominees all have substantial followings, and it will be interesting to see if these grow with the athletes’ increased exposure thanks to the SPOTY nomination.” 

Most influential SPOTY nominees

Rank Name User name Instagram followers Paid per post (£) 
     1 Rory McIlroy rorymcilroy 2,800,000 13,500 
     2 Stuart Broad stuartbroad 819,800 5,200 
     3 Mary Earps 1maryearps 727,400 4,800 
     4 Katarina Johnson-Thompson johnsonthompson 268,900 2,200 
     5 Frankie Dettori frankiedettori_ 205,100 1,800 
     6 Alfie Hewett alfiehewett6 14,200 231

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