What Conor McGregor's Instagram tells us about the man
Ahead of his boxing bout against Floyd Mayweather, we analysed what The Notorious values most when it comes to fashion, fighting, celebrities and wealth.
Everyone is familiar with Conor McGregor’s brash persona.
That, along with his fighting prowess, has made him the UFC’s biggest star both in and outside of the Octagon.
But away from the luxurious cars, clothes and watches, what motivates the man who is in the boxing betting odds to beat Floyd Mayweather in the ring on 26 August?
We analysed every single one of his 1,200 Instagram posts – from the account’s conception in June 2013 to the end of July of this year – to find out.
It seems unthinkable now, but McGregor gave little away about himself on Instagram in 2013.
After first setting up his account in June, the Irishman posted just 25 times that year, at a rate of just over four posts per month.
The variety of topics he posted about were, perhaps unsurprisingly, very different to the present day.
Over half of his posts that year were about fighting, with the fashion, cars and watches that he is synonymous with today not figuring at all.
As McGregor’s fame grew, however, so did his fondness for chronicling his life on social media.
Jump forward two years to 2015 – the year that he won his first belt in the UFC – and ‘The Notorious’ was now posting approximately 33 times per month.
The subject matter changed considerably, too, as he got his first taste of the now-famous ‘Mac Life’.
The percentage of posts that were about other celebrities rose from 0 to 7.7 per cent - still the highest proportion of any year to date.
The same is true of posts about him being in the USA – a recognition of the increasing number of high-profile fights he was involved in – which rose from 0 in 2014 to 7.4 per cent in 2015.
For the first time, McGregor also began posting images of cars and watches, while the percentage of posts about fighting dropped considerably.
Thanks to his achievements in the Octagon, his give-no-f***s persona and his participation in what will be the biggest boxing match of all time, McGregor is far more famous in 2017 than he has ever been before.
He often boasts about his luxury lifestyle, and that is reflected in his Instagram feed.
The amount of posts about fashion has risen to 16.4 per cent – the highest proportion ever and almost triple the number from 2015 – and he also flaunts his cars and watches more than ever before.
He’s posted more about those things than even his long-term girlfriend Dee Devlin.
One thing has changed things for McGregor in the past few months, though: his son.
Since his birth in April, Conor Jr. has featured in one in eight of his father’s Instagram posts – a higher proportion than fashion, cars, watches or celebrities.
With fame, fortune and his growing family such huge parts of McGregor’s life in 2017, it’s easy to assume that his focus is no longer on what made him a star in the first place: fighting.
If his Instagram is anything to go by, though, his eye is well and truly on the prize ahead of his bout with Mayweather.
Since that fight was announced in June, the two-weight UFC champion has posted more about fighting than at any time since 2013.
He realises, it seems, that beating one of the greatest boxers at all time will require some hard hours in the gym, as he’s posting more pictures from training than ever before.
Almost every other aspect of his life – the fashion, the cars, the watches and the celebrities – has been disregarded as he prepares for the biggest fight of his life.
With his ostentatious lifestyle, brash behaviour and occasionally coarse comments in press conferences, it’s easy to paint McGregor as a narcissist.
His Instagram page proves, however, that behind the persona is a family man who cares just as much about his career as he does the fruits of it.