Analysing Super League side’s social media presence as IMG could do

The game is set to be taken over for the upcoming seasons by management company IMG and they have a clear focus on the commercial aspect of the game as they try and grow rugby league to become a far larger sport than it is.

With the IMG management takeover we’ve seen and heard multiple proposals as to how they could reshape the rugby league ladders and one key focus will be the outreach of clubs.

This can come down to attendances and physical numbers but also digital figures such as the presence of each team on social media, how much content they make and how many of their fans engage in that.

Just recently we’ve seen Huddersfield Giants create a Youtube channel in a move that could be a ploy to grow their online presence and engage more fans, something that the club stated when they announced the channel launch, as reported here.

In creating a Youtube channel they’re ahead of some other Super League clubs as some don’t have one at all, or it’s laying dormant with very little content.

A better gauge of social media interaction and online presence is Twitter and Instagram followers and here’s a ranking of the 12 Super League clubs and what their online support is like.

Twitter Rankings

12: Leigh Leopards – 27.1k
11: Catalans Dragons – 40.4k
10: Huddersfield Giants – 44.1k
9: Wakefield Trinity – 46k
8: Salford Red Devils – 46.7k
7: Castleford Tigers – 58.4k
6: Hull KR – 61.8k
5: Hull FC – 80.1k
4: Warrington Wolves – 95.8k
3: St Helens – 113.6k
2: Wigan Warriors – 124.9k
1: Leeds Rhinos – 201.2k

Instagram Rankings

12:Leigh Leopards – 13.2k
11: Wakefield Trinity – 15.7k
10: Salford Red Devils – 16.1k
9: Huddersfield Giants – 16.2k
8: Hull KR – 32.5k
7: Castleford Tigers – 32.7k
6: Hull Fc – 41k
5: Catalans Dragons – 41.6k
4: Warrington Wolves – 48.4k
3: St Helens – 50.5k
2: Wigan Warriors – 63.7k
1: Leeds Rhinos – 90.7k

The top four remains unchanged in both instances but interestingly Catalans are the only side that actually have a larger Instagram following than Twitter, something that could perhaps be a cultural difference between France and the UK.

As for overall averages that would propel the French side up the rankings, as seen below.

Social Media Following on Average (Rounded to the nearest 500)

12: Leigh Leopards – 20k
11: Huddersfield Giants – 30k
10: Wakefield Trinity – 31k
9: Salford Red Devils – 31.5k
8: Catalans Dragons – 41k
7: Castleford Tigers – 45.5k
6: Hull KR – 47k
5: Hull FC – 60.5k
4: Warrington Wolves – 72k
3: St Helens – 82k
2: Wigan Warriors – 94.5k
1: Leeds Rhinos – 146k

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