While Ron Paul is winning the Republican constituency of the Twitternation, Mitt Romney has established himself as the candidate of Facebook, even ahead of President Obama.
Experian Hitwise Director of Research Heather Doughtery wrote about the Facebook traffic for the presidential candidates this election season and found some encouraging news – if Facebook has anything to say about it – for one Willard Romney and company, at least insofar securing the Republican nomination. The traffic data only leads up to January 21, which was the date of the South Carolina primary so it’s anybody’s guess as to whether I’ll be announcing that Newt “The Gravedigger” Gingrich is the new President of Facebook after Florida’s primary next week.
Regardless, this is where we are now: Romney’s killing it on Facebook. Not only is his official Facebook page getting 1.7x more visits than Ron Paul’s fan page, his closest Republican/Facebook competitor, Romney’s page is netting 2.5x more visitors than Obama’s page. I know the line graph below is a little hard to see, but that red line that’s leaps and bounds ahead of every other line you see? Red is for Romney, and everybody else basically in the gutter looking up at his Facebook star.
If you’re Mitt Romney’s campaign staff and you believe that Facebook is in any way a valid reflection of people’s Real Life behavior and interests, here’s some news to send you to sleep with a smile: people making less than $30,000 are visiting your Facebook page a lot, and people in Ohio are visiting your Facebook page a lot. Why should this make Mitts happy? Because being poor and living in Ohio are two characteristics of the ever-important swing voters who would help decide a general election should Romney obtain the nomination and face Obama.
31.8% of visitors to Romney’s Facebook page in the last four weeks were reported to earn less than $30,000. Furthermore, visitors from Ohio had the highest share of visits in the last four weeks (Utah was closely behind Ohio in shares of visits but that’s Mormon country – Romney’s bread and butter – so that’s not surprising). Whether people just wanna get close with the enemy or are genuinely interested in learning about Romney, he’s pulling in some Facebook interest.
As Dougherty concluded, this is good Facebook news for Romney because it suggests that “social efforts are gaining attention and building an audience on Facebook.” This has been a crazy primary thus far, though, and who knows what the results of the South Carolina primary have done to this race. Also, keep in mind: this is not madness, this is Facebook; where people go when they need to post creepy pictures of their ultrasounds and share the latest frog/wolf/Asian father meme to their dubious friends. And since the third (more?) act of the Newtation is apparently really happening, so we’ll see how everybody’s settled on Facebook after the Florida primary.