Roy Keane may have hit the jackpot with his Instagram account
He is one of the most unlikely social media influencers, yet Roy Keane may have hit the jackpot with his Instagram account.
Keane has often hit out at footballers for using social media platforms to promote their sidelines businesses, while he has also been critical of players posing for selfies in dressing rooms after what he described as "meaningless" wins.
Yet, following his unexpected arrival on Instagram earlier this month, former Manchester United and Ireland captain Keane has become an instant Insta-success story as he reached the milestone mark of attracting one million followers in double-quick time.
It's safe to assume Keane is less than interested in his social media fanbase, but his audience will no doubt be of special interest to his advisors and any potential sponsors.
Keane's first three Instagram posts have generated huge interaction with his audience, with his first post depicting him with a dog registering over 71 thousand likes.
His subsequent posts have also attracted big interest - one a throwback to his days with Manchester United and the other showing off his beloved grandson, both captioned with true Keano wit.
This will have no doubt perked the attention of potential sponsors who are looking to attach themselves to social media influencers with an active audience base.
Some on social media may have manufactured an audience that may not be fully engaged with their efforts to become an influencer, yet there is no doubt Keane would garner support.
Keane may become a highly lucrative commodity, with influencers boasting an Instagram audience in excess of one million charging tens of thousands of euros for sponsorship agreements.
Industry experts suggest Keane could claim as much as €50,000 for one message endorsing a product, while a sustained social media campaign could be worth ten times that amount.
Influencer agencies would relish the chance to work with Keane and, while the notoriously prickly Cork legend may be reluctant to indulge in such agreements, the possibilities could be endless.
Keane's former Manchester United team-mate Gary Neville recently announced a tie-in with sportswear company Castore that sees him wearing their clothing on his social media platforms.
Other ex-footballers have also cashed in on their social media success, with ex-England captain and Match of the Day host Gary Lineker among those to have benefitted from his huge social media following.
All these ex-players are lagging behind the ultimate social media influencer, with Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo continuing to set records on and off the pitch after reaching 500 million followers on social media earlier this month.
The former Manchester United forward became the first celebrity to hit the historic half a billion figure across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Research suggests Ronaldo earned €48 million from his Instagram account in 2020, with each sponsored post worth over €1 million to the Portuguese great.