Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Top Royal Instagrams of December 2016

It's one of the most famous royal photos of 2016 and it was tsill getting lots of social media love in December just gone
(photo Kensington Royal Instagram)

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas....the festive season may be over for another year but the top Instagram rundown of December 2016 has turned into a seasonal special. Most of the official royal accounts see a Christmas photo top their list like for the month just gone but if this rundown of the most liked royal Instagrams of December 2016 proves one thing, it's that we love a royal portrait.  The figures show this time round that when it comes to royalty, a simple image of the regal stars of the show is what it's all about.

It's only a few weeks old but it's already one of the most popular official royal images of the year. The photo shared on Instagram in December of the Queen with Prince Charles, taken by Nick Knight, released to round off Elizabeth II's 90th birthday year got 45,000 likes on the official Royal Family account and another 16.3 on Clarence House's Instagram. It's a reminder, as if we needed one, that the focus of royalty remains the Crown and the succession and what creates history is the telling of the tale of the dynasty that rules.

As usual, Kensington Palace's Instagram account has the photo with the most likes but with such a colossal lead when it comes to followers (now on 1.7 million), that's never a surprise. This month, the most liked image there is a montage of nine photos from 2016, shared as the old year came to an end and which has won 67.9k already. Interestingly, the Duchess of Cambridge is the least featured of the Kensington royals in the compilation, shown just twice while Prince Harry and Prince William make three appearances each, Princess Charlotte is seen four times and Prince George tops them all with five cameos. But like the Royal Family and Clarence House accounts, this is all about the simple heart of the royal story - the people who make up the House of Windsor.

Denmark's royals only launched their Instagram account in spring 2016 but it's turning into a popular way of following their story and their handling of December just gone has been a big boost. The Danish royals had an Advent calendar theme, revealing a photo from Christmas past every day and sharing a lot of fun, informal family snaps while they were about it. But what really got the hearts flying for detdanskekongehus in December was the 2016 Christmas photo of Margrethe II and Prince Henrik surrounded by their grandchildren as they posed in front of their tree. Another royal portrait that showed just how important a simple image can be - with 10.8 likes it was easily the most popular picture shared.

Two more of the newest royal Instagram accounts got their biggest hits in December with Christmas family portraits. The Norwegian Royal Family shared one of their winter picnic snaps on their shiny new account (launched just weeks ago) and picked up 530 likes for it.

Another new royal account on the Instagram block, that of the Belgian family, got its biggest hit of December 2016 with the rather festive and sweet family portrait of King Philippe, Queen Mathilde and their children. While 734 might not sound a lot of likes in comparison with William and Kate's epic haul above, for a new account with just over 4,000 followers it's a big hit.

The Swedish Instagram account underlined the importance of image in modern royalty with its most liked photo of December. A simple, close up portrait of Queen Silvia by Peter Knutson, shared on December 23rd to mark her birthday, was easily the best liked of the month, winning 17.4 hearts.  Just as royal houses of yesteryear used portaits and photos to establish an image, so modern social media is painting a picture of ruling houses in the early 21st century. And just as in times long past, this month's most liked photos show that when it comes to a royal house, what lies at the heart of popularity are the people behind the thrones. After centuries of royal life, what we still want to see are the faces of those who now inhabit regal roles and ancient titles.

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