#Election2015: Raleigh Candidates’ Twitter Presence

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In today’s election environment, candidates even on the local level are practically required to have a multifaceted approach to their online presence. A website, a Facebook page, a Twitter account — all ways of reaching out to supporters and spreading their message to potential voters.

It can be difficult to analyze the efficacy of any of these platforms when it comes to recruiting voters or increasing election-day turnout, and trickier still to collect solid data on how frequently the candidates are utilizing them.

Thankfully, there are a number of services that provide detailed analytics for at least one of these platforms: Twitter. We paid for a one-month subscription to Twitonomy, and received their permission to share the results here. You’ll be able to learn everything from their most popular posts to the platform to the average number of tweets they send out per day.

It goes without saying that the information below says more about a candidate’s (or their staffers) ability to engage well on social media than it does about their fitness to govern, but we found the results interesting nonetheless.

Readers: if you would prefer we change the layout of the data below, please let us know in the comments or by sending an email to editor@raleighpublicrecord.org.

We have arranged the gallery the same way we arranged the candidate interviews on the sidebar: alphabetically by candidate name, starting with mayor, then at-large councilors followed by districts A-E. The only candidate with no Twitter presence is District B incumbent John Odom.


3 thoughts on “#Election2015: Raleigh Candidates’ Twitter Presence

  1. Why is Councilor Eugene Weeks not present in this report?? You mention that John Odom is the only one that does not have a twitter presence but have no data associated with Councilor Week’s account.

  2. Alicia,

    My apologies, we had pulled Weeks’ data and even tagged him on Twitter for this post, but for some reason his images were not showing up in the gallery.

    It should be fixed now, but thank you for calling this to our attention!

    And if you’re a Weeks fan, his interview will be posted to the site sometime this evening.


  3. Wouldn’t it have been more useful to readers or voters to use a premium social media analytical tool that measured the overall sentiment online concerning each candidate? Or was there not enough budget to use a program like Sysomos, Radian 6, or Brandwatch? Tools like Klout are still useful generally speaking and are free.

    Many candidates may not be Twitter savvy at all but have hired a publicist or a trusted communicator to create tweets for them. So the above information is good for the candidates THEMSELVES to see as they study what’s resonating with their following, and who among their following is engaging with them most.

    But as a voter am I really interested in how many tweets a candidate creates or who his or her top retweeters are? Not really! Do I need to know he or she uses Hootsuite more than the mobile app for Twitter ? Not at all. Again, in my professional opinion what you’ve shared above is more useful for the candidates themselves not the voting public.

    As a voter I’d be more interested in knowing which of the candidates has created more buzz online, what’s the overall online sentiment concerning each candidate, and which issues got the biggest push via their social profiles. Twitter hashtags alone just scratch the surface, since I’m willing to bet many of these candidates use Facebook possibly more or just as much.

    As a voter too, I would be more interested in seeing vanity numbers meaning how many likes, followers, and subscribers they have on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. I might throw in Instagram too since it’s primarily for mobile content and is used by millennials most.

    I’ll say this too about the info above. If I were a candidate I’d thank you. I’d use your reports to get some insider information on my competition. You’ve provided their most popular tweets, which Twitter users are doing the most retweeting of their content, and which Twitter users they are mentioning most.

    Any real social media strategist for a candidate should be using your report to attract their competition’s Twitter following to their client.