From dramatic plot twists to ridiculously long feuds, there’s no denying that British soap operas not only stand the test of time but keep viewers coming back for more.
For several decades, iconic soap operas such as EastEnders and Coronation Street have featured captivating characters and gripping storylines that have captured the hearts of many.
However, as avid soap opera fans will know, there is a long-standing rivalry between British soaps. Whether it’s having the most soap awards or the most viewers - but have you ever wondered which soaps have the most successful stars on Instagram?
As one of the UK’s top entertainment sites, our casino experts decided to look beyond the enthralling plotlines and take a closer look at the Instagram account of our favourite soap stars to reveal just how much they earn per post.
Delving into the enchanting world of British soap operas, we also unveil the soap stars topping the rich list by taking into account how many followers they've amassed on the popular social media platform.
Highest-Earning Soap Stars
Despite the rivalry between popular British soap operas in regard to awards earned and viewership rates, there seems to be a clear winner when it comes to the cast with the highest earners on Instagram and it is none other than - Hollyoaks.
1. Jorgie Porter
Soap: Hollyoaks | Character: Theresa McQueen
Instagram followers: 757,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £2,830
Hollyoaks star, Jorgie Porter tops the rich list as the highest overall earner making an estimated £2,830 per sponsored Instagram post. Well known for portraying the role of Theresa McQueen on the Channel 4 soap opera, the actress quickly rose to fame. The 35-year-old now has over 750,000 followers on Instagram.
2. Jamie Lomas
Soap: Hollyoaks | Character: Warren Fox
Instagram followers: 617,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £2,307
Jorgie Porter’s co-star, Jamie Lomas follows closely behind in second place as one of the highest-earning soap stars. Though he also played the character of Jake Stone in EastEnders, Porter is best known for his role as Warren Fox in Hollyoaks. Not only has he amassed 617,000 followers on Instagram but he also cashes in on an estimated £2,307 per sponsored post.
3. Chelsee Healey
Soap: Hollyoaks | Character: Goldie McQueen
Instagram followers: 611,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £2,285
Having appeared in various shows, acting is no new venture for Chelsee Healey. She is known for playing various characters such as Janeece Bryant in the BBC school-based drama series Waterloo Road, Honey Wright in the BBC medical drama series Casualty, and Goldie McQueen in the Channel 4 soap opera Hollyoaks.
It’s, therefore, no surprise that she grabs third place with an impressive 611,000 Instagram followers and estimated earnings of £2,285 per collaboration post on the social media platform.
Highest earners on EastEnders
1. Lacey Turner
Character: Stacey Slater
Instagram followers: 495,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £1,851
Lacey Turner grabs first place as the highest earner on our list for the cast of EastEnders. The English actress rose to fame after playing the role of Stacey Slater in the BBC soap opera.
Turner has had a successful career having won over thirty awards for her role, including ten British Soap Awards and four National Television Awards. It’s no wonder the soap star has not only accumulated 495,000 followers on Instagram but is also said to earn approximately £1,851 per sponsored post.
2. Jamie Borthwick
Character: Jay Brown
Instagram followers: 322,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £1,204
Best known for his portrayal of Jay Brown in EastEnders since 2006, Jamie Borthwick takes second place. The actor has also earned himself a British Soap Award for ”Best Dramatic Performance from a Young Actor or Actress”. He currently has over 300,000 followers on Instagram and could receive an estimated £1,204 in earnings per collaboration post.
3. Natalie Cassidy
Character: Sonia Fowler
Instagram followers: 284,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £1,062
Natalie Cassidy completes the top three highest earners on EastEnders with estimated earnings of £1,062 per sponsored post and 284,000 followers on Instagram.
The English actress is known for her role as Sonia Fowler on the soap opera, she has since appeared on other shows such as the BBC Two sitcom-horror Psychoville. She was also a contestant on the seventh series of Strictly Come Dancing and the ninth series of Celebrity Big Brother.
Highest Earners on Coronation Street
1. Tina O'Brien
Character: Sarah Platt
Instagram followers: 511,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £1,911
Tina O'Brien takes first place as the highest earner for the cast of Coronation Street where she plays the role of Sarah Platt. Since her time on the long-standing ITV soap opera, Tina has since gained popularity on social media. She currently has over half a million Instagram followers and earns an estimated £1,911 per sponsored collaboration post.
2. Samia Longchambon
Character: Maria Connor
Instagram followers: 432,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £1,615
Samia Longchambon comes in second place as one of the highest earners on Coronation Street. The English actress from Greater Manchester has played the role of Maria Connor
Since 2000. She now has almost 432,000 on Instagram and is expected to earn £1,615 per sponsored post.
3. Jack P. Shepherd
Character: David Platt
Instagram followers: 391,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £1,462
British actor, Jack Peter Shepherd ranks in third place and is best known for his role as David Platt on Coronation Street. He soon rose to fame having won various awards such as the ‘Best Young Actor’ at The Inside Soap Awards and the ‘Best Soap Actor’ at the TV Choice Awards in 2020.
Jack P. Shepherd now has 391,000 followers on Instagram and is said to earn an estimated £1,462 per sponsored post.
1. Lisa Riley
Character: Mandy Dingle
Instagram followers: 192,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £717
An actress, comedian, and TV presenter, Lisa Riley grabs the top spot as the highest earner on Emmerdale earning an estimated £717 per sponsored Instagram post.
Known for portraying the role of Mandy Dingle on the long-running ITV soap opera, Riley has since gone on to other projects such as being a contestant on the tenth series of Strictly Come Dancing, and a panellist on the ITV daytime series Loose Women.
2. Matthew Wolfenden
Character: David Metcalfe
Instagram followers: 188,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £703
Raised in West Yorkshire, Matthew Wolfenden ranks in second place with estimated earnings of £703 per sponsored post on Instagram and 188,000 followers on the social media platform.
Wolfenden is best known for playing the role of David Metcalfe on Emmerdale. Before landing his role on the cast of the hit soap opera, he was a cast member in the musical Saturday Night Fever.
3. Emma Atkins
Character: Charity Dingle
Instagram followers: 176,000
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £658
Emma Atkins completes the top three with estimated earnings of up to £658 per sponsored Instagram post. She plays the role of Charity Dingle and has been nominated for numerous awards for her work on Emmerdale.
She was named the ‘Inside Soap Awards Best Actress’ and was announced as ‘Best Actress’ at the 2018 Daily Star Soap Awards. Atkins also has approximately 176,000 followers on the social media platform.
Highest Earners on Doctors
1. Kia Pegg
Character: Scarlett Kiernan
Instagram followers: 83,900
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £418
Actress and TV presenter, Kia Pegg tops the list as the highest earner on the BBC soap opera Doctors where she plays the receptionist Scarlett Kiernan.
The 23-year-old also portrayed the role of Jody Jackson in the British children's drama show ‘Tracy Beaker Returns’, as well as its spin-off series ‘The Dumping Ground.’ Alongside her current role, she occasionally presents ‘Saturday Mash-Up!’ for CBBC.
With an extensive background in acting it's no surprise, Pegg takes the lead. The actress has just under 100,000 followers on Instagram and could potentially earn £418 per post.
2. Matthew Chamber
Character: Daniel Granger
Instagram followers: 947
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £305
Known for portraying the role of Daniel Granger on Doctors, Matthew Chamber ranks in second place. Despite having just less than 1,000 followers on Instagram, the English actor is expected to earn £305 per collaboration post on the social media platform.
This is perhaps due to the Chamber’s background in acting. He began his career a decade ago and has since made appearances in various shows and films such as ‘Mile High’, ‘Final Demand’, and ‘Holby City’.
3. Wendi Peters
Character: Nina Bulsara
Instagram followers: 4,291
Estimated Instagram earnings per post: £227
Beginning her acting career in theatre, Wendi Peters ranks third place with expected earnings of £227 per sponsored post on Instagram and has a following of over 4,000 on the platform.
Peters’ has appeared in various productions over the years, including ‘The Scarlet Pimpernel’, ‘Guys and Dolls’,’ Into the Woods’, and more. She also played Cilla Battersby-Brown in the ITV soap opera Coronation Street.
To find out the most successful British soap casts, we researched the main actors and actresses for some of the most successful soap operas including EastEnders, Coronation Street, Hollyoaks, Emmerdale, and Doctors.
Using lists such as Hollyoaks characters and EastEnders characters from Wikipedia we then searched each of the current main characters on Instagram to get their Instagram handle and number of followers. Please note data was only obtained for stars that have a public Instagram account. Data collection for this was completed on 26/06/2023.
For the estimated Instagram earnings per post, we used the Instagram Influencer Earnings Calculator which took into account the number of followers and average likes and engagement rate each soap star has and calculated the estimated earnings range based on these figures. To normalise the data, we only collected figures for the higher end of these estimates. Data collection for this was completed on 05/07/2023.
Please note all figures were converted on 06/07/2023 from USD to GBP using Google Finance.