Thursday, 26 April 2012

Alberta Election 2012: Election Day Social Media Results

Here's the last report on the uses of social media in the 2012 Alberta Election:

Over the entire course of the election no party leader changed their rank in terms of social media uses as compared to the previous weeks. Danielle Smith increased her “likes” for her politician Facebook page from 9,955 to 29,559 over the campaign to win the Facebook battle; her increase demonstrates a true explosion of social media in a Canadian provincial election as compared to previous campaigns (for example, Prime Minister Stephen Harper currently has 2,796 “likes” for his politician page). Smith also used YouTube to the greatest effect of the leaders, but she did not surpass Alison Redford’s Twitter base of 13,054 followers.

It is interesting to note that Smith’s social media support did not translate into the kind of support pollsters were predicting, especially when compared to the results of the election. In the future, researchers may want to investigate what forces and tactics drove Smith’s large gains on social media, and why party support lags that of the individual leaders (see the final numbers in the report).

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