March 31, 2014

Sneakerhead Influence – Instagram Top 13

In our first two reviews of sneakerhead influence we analyzed the Top 33 overall across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, then took a focused look at the Top 25 on YouTube. We accidentally left three people off the YouTube list and from the reaction of some people you’d think we killed a puppy with a Red Yeezy.  I mean, 22/25 is still 88% – that’s a solid B in any high school in the country.  We’ve since updated that post and have decided to stick our proverbial fork back in the socket, this time with an Instagram ranking.  Hopefully, these super shock-proof gloves we bought will keep us safe.

At time of publishing, our Instagram account @sneakerheaddata had a whopping 271 followers.  While we’re counting on you to help drive that and planning to focus efforts there in the coming weeks, until then we are still very much IG neophytes.  Thus, we’ve invited another guest to weigh in with an expert opinion on the game.  A bonafide Instagram star in her own right with 39K followers, DamnnEricka of was gracious enough to chat with us.  You can also find her on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

In our talk with Ericka she alluded to the fact that Instagram is the great equalizer of social media.  All that’s needed to get started is a smart phone and an eye for what looks good.  “It’s a completely different outlet from YouTube.  It’s so easy to cop a pair of shoes and throw up some pictures of them opposed to recording, editing and posting videos.”  She went on to say that having a big Instagram following is important because “companies love reaching out to influencers in different markets and Instagram is huge right now.  So many of our favorite collectors are actually working with Jordan Brand right now because of their big followings on the app.”

So what you’re saying is that JB isn’t going to seed us until we add two of three zeros to our 271, huh?

With Ericka’s expert wisdom in mind, let’s take a look at the top 12 sneakerhead accounts on Instagram.  The parameters are:

  1. Total Instagram followers as of 3/25/2014
  2. Big sneaker blogs and shops who have editorial readership to boost followers have been removed
  3. We listed the top 13 plus Ericka, who was included as an honorable mention for her expert assistance
  4. We used fancy colors (blue and orange) to distinguish between commercial and non-commercial accounts, although we recognize some are debateable

Top IG Followers 033114
The accounts, in order:  KickassoKustoms (320k), Mache (280k), What the Kicks (212k), Chups Shop (153k), The Perfect Pair (146k), Ronnie Fieg (130k), uptown2k (120k), JBF Customs (91k), sellsneakershere (91k), Trusted Kicks (76k), Kicks0l0gy (65k), Kiccz (63k), DJ Clark Kent (59k), Sole Supremacy (55k), SneakerYeti (49k), Rare Footage (48k), Soleyghost (46k), KickGenius (46k) and DamnnEricka (39k)

Key Insights:

  • KickassoKustoms is number one with over 40k more followers than Mache.  They say Mache paints a mean shoe, but apparently he ain’t no Kickasso.
  • Seven of the top 13 accounts are commercial.  That leaves only six “true” influencers – to whatever extent that is defined as someone not trying to sell a product.  They are:  What the Kicks, The Perfect Pair, uptown2k, Kicks0l0gy, Kiccz and DJ Clark Kent.  That, ladies and gentlemen, is your Instagram superstar list.
  • What the Kicks has been posting pictures of his cute puppy and slick whip, perhaps artificially inflating his numbers as relate to sneakerhead influence.  But you could take away half his followers and he’d still be top six.
  • uptown2k has 120k followers but 75k are just trying to buy pants (unofficial stat)

Surprised to see anyone on the list above?  Did we miss anyone? (please say no, please say no).