Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Models: Social Media Power Ranking

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We’re coming up on the release of the 2014 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue–but which swimsuit models are making the best use of social media? We know they’re desperately waiting to hear from the COED offices about how we feel about this year’s pictorials. And we sure know that models like Kate Upton, Nina Agdal, and Brooklyn Decker constantly need some reassurance that they’re still looking good while appearing in what’s always the most popular swimsuit issue of the year.

And so we’ve carefully gone over how the ladies of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue are set up for getting some serious Twittering–along with Facebook posts and other important ways of staying in touch. We’ve done similar power rankings in the past (for the likes of NFL Cheerleaders, NBA Dancers, and NHL Ice Girls), but we’ve never found a group that’s set up for social media like these SI models. After all, social media is now arguably as valuable as a model’s look or her work history.

It’s our professional opinion that no one understands the importance of social media in the world of sexy gals more than the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. For two years now, Swimsuit Issue Editor-in-Chief M.J. Day has been teasing mystery photos of their shoots through her Instagram account. You can see some of the best examples of that smart marketing here. There are still plenty of surprises to be found in our polling. This isn’t just some popularity contest. It’s also an opportunity for these beach babes to show off their marketing brains.

You can head to the bottom of the post for a breakdown of our methodology, but we’ll understand if you just want to make a break for these models. You should really be following them all–but for now,  let’s get down with the 20 most popular SI Swimsuit models on social media…

In order to be considered for our “Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model Social Media Power Ranking”, a model had to be published twice in SI from 2006 and on. The only exceptions were rookies last year.

We then assigned 1 point to a model for each Instagram follower she had (models make pretty photos and pretty photos work best on Instagram), .9 points to a model for each Twitter follower she had, and .8 points to a model for each Facebook follower she had. Total those points all up and you’re left with our patented “Social Media Score.”

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