Since it was launched on 6 October 2010, Instagram has seen a steady growth in popularity. As of September 2017, the social media platform had about 800 million users. This is a sharp increase from the 1 million users it had in its first two months. Here are the top most popular accounts on Instagram over the years.

Selena Gomez 

Selena Gomez has an Instagram following of 138 million people. As of January 2018, Gomez was the most followed person on the site. In 2017, she had 5 of the most liked photos on Instagram. In 2017, she gained a following of 24 million people. This indicates that her popularity is still on the rise.

The popularity gained by Gomez can be attributed to a number of factors. To being with, she is known for not posting photos frequently. There are many people who do not like following celebrities that post too frequently. Selena also ‘grew up’ with many of her fans. She started being cast on television at 15, and many of her fans have been with her all the entire time. She is also highly active in television, movies, and music. Selena is also a subject of gossip due to her on and off relationship with Justin Bieber. Many of Justin’s fans have to follow her to stay up to date on the duo’s relationship. Finally, Miss Gomez posts relatable photos. She does not glorify herself as better than her fans. She posts rather normal posts that her followers can relate to.

Cristiano Ronaldo 

Ronaldo comes in second with 128 million followers. In 2017 alone, he gained over 30 million followers and had the most liked video on Instagram. He has been FIFA’s player of the year five times and won many other accolades. He is also one of the highest paid athletes. In the past 12 months alone, the star has earned $108 million.

The highly decorated soccer player gets his influence from his ability to match his phenomenal soccer skills with entrepreneurship. Besides his prowess in the field, he is sharp with his dressing and style. This makes him appeal to a large audience of admirers. Ronaldo is also highly active on Instagram. He regularly posts videos and photos of his skills and lifestyle.

Ariana Grande 

The pop star comes in third as the most followed person on Instagram. She has a following of 121 million people.

Her popularity is first attributed to her highly successful music career. Her fans love the fact that she is a relatable person. Her personality on and off stage has influenced the growing fan base who call themselves the Arianators. To many of her followers, Ariana is a beautiful soul. For instance, after an attack at her concert in Manchester, she went on a campaign to raise funds for those affected. With the slogan ‘One Love Manchester”, she managed to turn the tragedy into a memorable event.

Beyoncé 

Popularly known as Queen Bey, Beyoncé has a massive following of 115 million people on Instagram. Her popularity comes from her music which highly influences femininity and feminism. Many women find her message of empowerment, strength, motherhood and financial freedom for women to be inspiring. In 2017, Beyoncé’s photo announcing she was expecting twins had the most likes on Instagram at 11.1 million. Her other photo that made it to the top ten photos includes the first photo of the twins Sir Carter and Rumi with 10.3 million likes.

Kim Kardashian 

Kim Kardashian comes in as the fifth most followed person on Instagram. Her popularity has mainly been gained through controversy. Since the allegedly leaked video with musician Ray J, her name has never stopped appearing all over on the Internet. Kim Kardashian does not shy from controversy. Her photos depicting nudity serve to increase criticism from parents and the elderly while sparking attention from young men and women. Her reality show is also an avenue for propagating the controversy. Many young women can relate to her beauty and rebellion. Overall, she knows how to benefit from the attention. She uses her Instagram account to advertise clothing from big collections like Calvin Klein and to market her personal brands.