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On January 21, 2017, millions of people gathered around the world for a peaceful demonstration on an unprecedented scale. An incredible amount of social media activity documented the movement.

We dig into the data, as we do daily for the Obviously community, to try and understand the patterns of this fascinating event.

On Instagram, the scale was as impressive. Over a single day of posting, the event generated 2.6M posts and more than 140M likes and 2.9M comments!

But this was primarily a story of solidarity. Along with the DC March, with estimated 500k marchers (of which almost half posted on Instagram!), people participated in marches all over the globe. Los Angeles, New York, London, Chicago, San Francisco and much more. What was surprising was to see some cities stand out regarding Instagram activity.

London for example, where “only” 100k people gathered, generated 34k posts and a staggering 4.1M likes. That’s more likes than Chicago, SF, Boston and Denver combined! Regarding comments, Los Angeles’ posts generated the most conversation with almost three comments per post on average.

Solidarity was also visible in some of the popular hashtags that spontaneously took off. There were obviously Trump-related tags with the now classic #nastywoman and the great #lovetumphate. But other general trends surfaced, such as #womenrights, #humanrights, #love, and #thisiswhatdemocracylookslike.

On top of that, it was great to see that men showed up too. 22% of all marchers around the world were men. Maybe as a sign of how happy this made Instagram, their engagement rate was slightly higher than women with 65 likes generated per post versus 55 likes for women contributors.

But solidarity was probably the most visible in DC were 27% of marchers made the trip from others states (including some of our Obviously Team members!). And it was not just from very close states: California represents 21% of all out-of-state marchers made the trip all the way from the Golden State. And 5% of the posters came from another country and were physically present at the DC march.

It wouldn’t be a proper Obviously study if we hadn’t looked at how our influencers represented in the crowds. It was inspiring to see that micro-influencers (influencers with 1,000 to 100,000 followers) showed up in numbers: 15% of the marchers on average were micro-influencers. In Los Angeles, that number reached 26% of the Instagram contributors. That’s to compare with celebrity influencers that were less than 0.3% of the contributors this time. And niche influencers (< 10,000 followers) generated a staggering 5% engagement rate on average. Go Obviously Influencers!

As always, with in-depth data insights, Instagram posts tell a story. And our data team loves digging into it to understand what’s behind the picture, what motivates people, and what the value of each like and comment is. We will continue to analyze significant events and give you the rundown of what happened. In the meantime, check our infographic that sums up all these trends!

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