Social media self-branding and success: Quantitative evidence from a model competition

Author: Braesemann, F., & Stephany, F.
Published in:
Year: 2020
Type: Working paper

Thanks to the availability of large online data sets, it has become possible to quantify success in different fields of human endeavour. The study presented here contributes to this literature in evaluating the effect of social media activity, as a means of 'self-branding', to increase the chances of models being elected for the Playboy Magazine's Playmate of the Year award. We hypothesise that candidates who actively manage their Instagram accounts can increase their likelihood to win the award: they use social media to gain more followers, who then might vote for them in the award polls. The findings indicate that social media activity actually has predictive capacity to estimate the outcome of the award. We find evidence that candidates who manage their social media accounts more actively than other candidates have a higher probability to become Playmate of the Year. The findings underline the benefits of social media.

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Connected HIIG researchers

Fabian Braesemann, Dr.

Ehem. Gastforscher

Fabian Stephany, Dr.

Assoziierter Forscher: Innovation, Entrepreneurship & Gesellschaft


  • Open Access