Recently, The PGA announced the introduction of the Player Impact Program (PIP). The scheme rewards players for their influence rather than their tournament results, and it got many fans talking about which stars would benefit most from the program. 

One of the factors included in the scheme is “their popularity in Google search” and while stars such as Tiger Woods would clearly benefit from this, new research by Pickswise suggests that one of the most popular golfers is someone that hasn’t played professionally in five years…

Paige Spiranac turned professional in 2015 and retired a year later after just one professional win. However, even though she didn’t win on the course, she definitely won off it. The 28-year-old boasts over 3 million Instagram followers and nearly half a million Twitter followers – and it’s not only social media where she’s winning. 

Paige Spiranac

Image Credit: Instagram / @_paige.renee_

 

According to our analysis using data from SEMrush, Spiranac receives over 820,000 organic Google searches per month. Her closest female competitor, Danielle Kang, manages just over 5% of that, with 49,500 monthly Google searches. 

The Colorado native also blows the men’s numbers out of the water too, second to only Tiger Woods. 

With the PIP distributing $40m to the top 10 most valuable players at the end of the season,  of which $8m is allocated to the individual in P1, if earnings were spread equally between male and female Golfers, Paige would be in line to land a very large payday.

The table below details the most searched for male and female golfers around the world, for comparison purposes:

Golfer Gender Golf World Rankings (May 2021) Monthly Google Searches
Tiger Woods Male 97 2240000
Paige Spiranac Female N.A 823000
Dustin Johnson Male 1 368000
Bryson DeChambeau Male 4 301000
Jordan Spieth Male 28 246000
Adam Scott Male 36 201000
Justin Thomas Male 2 201000
Brooks Koepka Male 12 165000
Rory McIlroy Male 7 165000
Collin Morikawa Male 6 135000
Jon Rahm Male 3 90500
Matthew Wolff Male 27 90500
Patrick Reed Male 8 90500
Tony Finau Male 14 90500
Bubba Watson Male 55 60500
Danielle Kang Female 9 49500
Abraham Ancer Male 19 49500
Cameron Champ Male 89 49500
Jason Day Male 62 49500
Viktor Hovland Male 11 49500
Webb Simpson Male 10 49500
Xander Schauffele Male 5 49500
Seon Woo Bae Female 4 40500
Jeong Eun Lee Female 6 40500
Hee Jeong Lim Female 27 33100
Lydia Ko Female 14 27100
Mone Inami Female 23 22200
Hae Ran Ryu Female 8 18100
So Mi Lee Female 39 8100
Ai Suzuki Female 12 6600
Ayaka Furue Female 38 6600
Hye Jin Choi Female 1 5400
Ji Yai Shin Female 17 5400
Mi Jung Hur Female 26 5400
Brooke M. Henderson Female 34 4400
Min Ji Park Female 49 4400
Patty Tavatanakit Female 13 3600
Shanshan Feng Female 16 3600
Hyo-Joo Kim Female 45 3600

Will Other Sports Implement a Player Impact Program?

Spiranac’s social media presence and popularity among non golf fans definitely give her the edge over the professional golfers but this is a trend we have seen in other sports too. 

Social media sensation Jake Paul recently sold 1.5 million PPV buys – making it a top 10 boxing PPV of all time. With Jake’s older brother Logan pulling in similar figures from his fight against British YouTuber KSI, perhaps Boxing should implement a similar incentive program too. 

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