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What Can Twitter Teach You about the Top 6 US Presidential Candidates?

February 10, 2016
Aaron Polmeer

By annboyles

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Posted by annboyles

As many of you — particularly our friends in Iowa and New Hampshire — are keenly aware, the height of the US presidential election season is upon us. In recent years, social media has had an increasingly profound impact on campaigns and election conversations, with candidates and their supporters (and detractors) taking to Twitter in droves. Here at Moz, we’re seizing the opportunity to examine the Twitter accounts of candidates seeking the highest office in the US to see what insights we can discover by sifting through the data.

Over the next nine months, we’ll be putting our Twitter analytics tool, Followerwonk, to work on the presidential candidates: analyzing followers, tracking changes in followership around key moments in time, and sharing any other interesting tidbits we run into along the way.

Join us on the Moz Blog between now and the general election in November as we reveal insights on followership trends of the top-performing presidential candidates. You can also follow the data we’re tracking the current six top-performing candidates* in realtime by visiting their individual Followerwonk analysis report pages:

*Top-performing candidates as measured by their finishing positions in the 2016 Iowa Caucus and New Hampshire primary. This list will evolve with the election cycle.

Top states getting their political tweets on

Let’s dive in!

We wanted to identify the top 10 states where users were tweeting about each candidate during 24-hour periods surrounding the Iowa Caucus and the New Hampshire primary.

So, what’s the big deal with Iowa and New Hampshire?

We’re going to take a quick step back here for those of you who may not be familiar with these events to explain why they matter. The Iowa Caucus and New Hampshire primary are the first two electoral contests during the US presidential election cycle. It’s the first time real voters cast real votes to narrow the field of candidates hoping to become the next president. These events play a significant role in shaping the public conversation about which candidates will ultimately be best positioned to capture their party’s nomination.

We won’t dig into the debate on this forum about whether either the Iowa Caucus or New Hampshire primary should be as influential as they are — plenty of other blogs and media outlets have that covered. But, there’s no denying they play an important role in setting the tone for the electoral contests still to come.

Which states were a-twitter on Twitter?

Back to our original question: Which states tweeted the most about the candidates during the first two electoral contests? To capture this, we examined all tweets mentioning the candidates in the Twitter Sample Stream and used Followerwonk’s location resolution algorithm to determine which US states were most represented in users’ Twitter bios. We then normalized results based on state population size. It’s worth noting that we used the locations from Twitter …read more

Source:: Moz Blog