Analyzing Nike’s Instagram account.

Posted 20/04/2017 by Tim


Nike is one of the world’s largest sports brand specializing in the sales of footwear, apparel, equipment, accessories, and services. They have an enormous following on Instagram at 71.1 million followers, towering others in their niche such as;

  • Adidas – 13.8 million

  • New balance – 2 million

  • Converse – 5.6 million

  • Vans – 7.4 million

  • Reebok – 1 million

  • Puma – 4.2 million

Being one of the leading Instagram accounts out there I figured Nike is the perfect account for us to dig deep into their analytics to try and find useful insights that could be used by others trying to up their engagement and audience.


One of the most interesting statistics that I discovered was that Nike has only posted 1 image since I started tracking them on the 3rd of April, so that’s one image in almost 3 weeks. This comes as quite a big surprise as I thought an account of this size would have a dedicated social media manager and be posting multiple times daily.

On this particular post they received over 225K likes on the same day it was published, compared with about 5k throughout the rest of their account.

Why is it that Nike post very rarely? I guess it’s hard to tell exactly why but it’s possible they leave posts there longer, without posting again to generate more engagement for it as everyone coming to the account will see that 1st post, and as a rule it will gather the most like / comments, and with the amount of followers Nike grows by every hour, that’s a damn lot!

Since the 3rd of April (day we started tracking) Nike have grown their audience by 636k followers! That’s about an increase on average of about 35k followers per day, or a few thousand per hour.

Surprisingly also, they lose quite a lot of followers as you can see in the image below where in particular hours they drop over 3K. I could only assume this is due to Instagram cleaning spam accounts which many of them may of followed Nike automatically.

Looking into when Nike gets the most followers I can see that on Thursday’s at 10pm (AEST) they’ve grown by a total of 13.2K followers.

During this period Nike gained a total of 335K likes throughout their account, not just on the posts in the time since we started tracking but across all of their posts. Except for the single day that they posted, they gained about 4K engagement per day apart from one day that I noticed, April 19th where they gained about double that, 8K.

On looking through individual posts performance on that day, none of them stood out in particular so that tells me they didn’t get a post featured on another Instagram account or website, but that they were probably running a marketing campaign on that particular day.

I did a quick google search and noticed a post made on April 19th about the release of a new model of shoe, the Nikelab air max plus. It was posted on the Nike page on April 19th also –

This post must have had quite a bit of hype around it, sending users to their Instagram in anticipation of more news and resulting in a double of their engagement for the day.

Back to blog.