#Election2012: Which Candidate Has More Social Media Influence?

Yesterday we posted an introduction to the Presidential race in social media.  Largely it’s a reflection of volume and we are going to dive into some of the issues in this race in the near future; there are some very interesting trends emerging.

Today we decided to take a look at the race with some third-party social media measurement tools: Klout, PeerIndex and neat new little tool called Status People, which divides Twitter users’ followers into “real,” “fake,” or “inactive.”

For starters, here’s how the campaign handles match up in terms of sheer Twitter followers.  It’s not surprising that the current leader of the free world attracts such a mass of followers.  It’s also important to note that Paul Ryan’s handle is relatively new – since the recent announcement he’d been named to the VP ticket. His old handle, as a member of Congress, has 200,000 followers and he last posted to this account on August 5th.

Interestingly, Ryan’s old Twitter handle, still ranked higher in a Google “incognito” search for “Paul Ryan Twitter.”  If I were advising him, I’d recommend posting a message to the old handle directing followers to his new handle, and updating the Twitter profile on the old account to reflect the same call to action.

The charts below reflect data from the following handles from the Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates:  @BarackObama@MittRomney@JoeBiden and @PaulRyanVP.


 With all those followers, how many are real accounts?  According to Status People, 39% of the President’s 18 million Twitter followers are fake, 16% of former Massachusetts’s Governor Romney’s are fake, 18% of Vice President Biden’s Twitter followers are fake and 15% of Congressman Ryan’s Twitter followers are fake.  The chart nearby also depicts what Status People reports as “real” followers and “inactive” followers.

Klout, which certainly has its critics and advocates, recently updated its algorithm for measuring “influence.” Reuters reported that as a result of the changes, the President’s Klout score has surpassed singer Justin Bieber who nets 26 million followers.

PeerIndex is sometimes presented as an alternative to Klout, and has taglines that suggest Twitter users can “own their influence.”  Here’s how the candidates stack up in PeerIndex.



Does any of this data mean anything?  It’s hard to tell.  No one really knows, except for the tool-makers, how these measures are generated, though I’m fascinated by the results from Status People.  To that end, we’re not sure of any of the inputs and therefore, can’t be sure of the outputs.  Personally, I’m very interested in Klout as a marketing and rewards program for brands (rather than a measure of social media influence), but I’m less certain of what any of these scores mean in a Presidential election, as none of them existed in 2008.   Regardless, that’s why we’re going to focus in on issues and personalities. Stay tuned for another update.

Photo credit:  Flickr

 Also see:
–> New: #Election2012: Taxes Are The Number One Issue, Says Social Media

#Election2012 Social Race: Can Social Media Predict the Election?
#Election2012: Is Romney Absorbing Ryan’s Social Media Buzz?  



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