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BizReport : Advertising archives : September 13, 2012

Pew: The importance of social for politics

As the 2012 Presidential Election looms in the US, more politically-minded pages are going up around the social sphere. There are pages for Republicans, Democrats, specific candidates, 'haters' of candidates or parties...the list goes on. While those behind the social pages and profiles insist they are important - are they?

by Kristina Knight

According to data from Pew Research politically minded social network profiles or pages are 'modestly influential' to actual political activities. According to the report:

• 36% of social networkers say these sites are 'very important' in keeping up with political news
• 26% say they are 'very important in recruiting efforts
• 25% say political pages are 'very important' is discussing issues and sharing political views

How are social networks impacting the election? About one-quarter of social networkers say they've become more active in a political activity after discussing it or reading posts within social networks while 16% say these sites have changed their views about an issue because of a social page.

As for which social discussions are getting the most play, after the Democratic National Convention last week, General Sentiment reports discussions about jobs ranked highest in the social sphere. At the same time, chatter about President Obama grew during the convention; on the down side, the President's 'sentiment' score fell by about 26% after his acceptance speech.

As for the Republican party, presidential nominee Mitt Romney has his social sentiment rise through September 7, when it took a sharp nosedive. Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden (D) saw his online sentiment increase by more than 300% while that of Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan (R) saw a sentiment nosedive of more than 36%.

Tags: General Sentiment, Pew Research, political advertising, social marketing, social network trends

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