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HomeArticlesPart 1: Charting Celebrities on Facebook , Instagram and Youtube

Part 1: Charting Celebrities on Facebook , Instagram and Youtube

Determining where Africans spend most of their attention on Social Media is fraught with challenges. Inconsistent or non-existent measurements sometimes conflated with imported brands can drown out the local homegrown talents or stars.

Facebook boasting a daily userbase of 1.69Billion in 2020 has 210 million users from Africa, Instagram is not far behind with 1Billion users while YouTube has 2Billion

Instagram being the most recently created in 2010 has had the quickest growth in comparison to Facebook in 2005 and YouTube in 2004.

Africa has not slackened in representation as the charts below demonstrate.

Top Celebrities 

According to Starngage Instagram is clearly the platform of choice and this is demonstrated most visibly in Nigeria where there are twice as many followers of top celebrities in comparison to Facebook.  All three States favor Instagram though South Africa has a marginal preference for Instagram.

Top Instagram by Profile

Segmenting by profession Singers and Actors represent more than 50% participation on Instagram. Given the format and ease of use, it goes without over elaborating that a picture generates more interest. Comedians also use Instagram as a viable channel for engagement.

Most Engaged Fans

Engagement with content is the key metric for creating viral or memorable moments. South African celebrities have the most loyal fans with engagement averaging over 2% of total followings. South African Television present Bonang Matheba(bonang_m) ranks highest leading the league. Only three male celebrities break into the top 10 +1 league, indicating that interesting content is most likely being influenced by a higher mixed percentage of followers.

Most Instagram Fans


Dissecting Instagram, participation is led by Singers with over 50% representation most of which are female. Journalist pops up on the analysis and are not repeated in other geographies. Comedians also provide 10% engagement

South Africa

The South African movie industry contributed $210M to the economy in 2019. Most film production income is generated via facilitation for the production of foreign movies. Actors lead with 40% representation in the top tier. Singers and other entertainers in the music industry provide a combined 35%


Nollywood the alias for the Nigerian Film or Movie industry generated over $7.2 billion to the economy in 2016. The industry employs over one million Nigerians directly or indirectly. Actors and singers leverage their influence and popularity effectively on Instagram with over 75% representation. Engagement is predominantly female-led with Yemi Alade @yemialde topping the league with overall fans, however, Tiwa Savage @tiwasavage garners the most engagement

Instagram continues to be the most engaging Social media platform or network in Africa with a sizeable engagement and fan followership. It provides the right balance of content with minimal creation effort and maximum reach. Part II will provide insights into Facebook and Youtube.


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