Update, May 8: Ninja now gets more social media engagement than any athlete. He’s bigger than all of them. Literally every single one.
Fortnite is very popular, and some of the people streaming it have also gotten quite popular. Yes, these are both significant understatements. Back in April, Ninja ranked among the top three names in sports for social media engagement. Now he’s number one, by a significant margin.
What's the latest in Ninja's game of choice? Find out in our Fortnite update tracker.
That metric once again comes via Hookit, a company which values sponsorship deals for various brands. Ninja is now on the top of the list for engagement with fans, boasting 150 million social interactions across Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. That puts him above football player Cristiano Ronaldo, with 139 million interactions.
In March, @Ninja became the first ever gamer to make the top ten list for social interactions among all athletes. Haters said it was because of Drake, a fluke, etc.
Last month, he hit #1 - ahead of Ronaldo, Shaq & Neymar.
— Bryce Blum (@esportslaw) May 8, 2018
As was the case in April, the other athletes on the list have far, far more social media followers than Ninja, but the streamer’s putting out more frequent posts with better overall engagement. And this month, you can say with some certainty that it’s no longer a knock-on effect from Drake.
Whether Ninja should be counted among athletes - he’s not even an active esports competitor these days - is somewhat beside the point. He’s ranking above names ranging from Ronaldo to Shaquille O’Neal and even the likes of Roman Reigns, beating out every athlete in the world as an even more engaged social media presence. You can see the full list of competition via the Hookit 100 list.
Original story, April 13: Ninja was third in social interactions among all athletes in March. That's according to Hookit, a company that works out how valuable a sponsorship deal may be to a brand.
Via Bryce Blum, of an esports law firm:
Scrolling through my timeline and did a double take... @Ninja was third in social interactions among ALL athletes last month - only behind Ronaldo and LeBron. That’s insane.— Bryce Blum (@esportslaw) April 12, 2018
Via @hookitcom (advanced sponsorship valuations company) pic.twitter.com/yXGy9CVCmj
With 66.7 million interactions across Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, Ninja was the third-most spoken-to athlete in the world last month. Only basketball legend Lebron James and football star Cristiano Ronaldo were ahead on interactions, with 76.2 million and 136.8 million respectively.
It's all the more impressive given Ninja's total followers (again, across those three platforms), which are 'only' 3.2 million. Both Lebron and Ronaldo have more than 100 million. Clearly, Ninja is getting far more engagement per head from each of his followers - not surprising, since digital platforms are fundamental to what he does, and gamers are more tech-savvy by nature.
You can take a look at Hookit's Engagement 100 here - their chart offers the handy ability to sort athletes by field, including esports. After Ninja, the most talked-about esports star is Matt 'Nadeshot' Haag, the former COD pro and founder of 100 Thieves. Though Haag has almost a million more followers than Ninja, he had 'only' 868,200 interactions last month. That doesn't even put him close to the top 100 across all sports - Ninja is there alone.