Cruz Takes On Trump for the GOP Social Media Nomination

Engagement Labs Ranks How Republican and Democratic Presidential Candidates Perform on Social Media

TORONTO, Ontario — April 28, 2016 – Technology and data company Engagement Labs, creator of eValue Analytics™ score, today released rankings on how U.S. Presidential candidates performed on Facebook and Twitter, for the month of April 2016.

“As the U.S. Presidential race inches closer to naming an official nominee for each party, the candidates’ social media performances are reflecting the changes seen on the campaign trail,” stated Bryan Segal, CEO at Engagement Labs. “The Democratic Party saw Bernie Sanders gain extensive ground with younger voters, while Republican candidate Donald Trump continues to gain the most followers month-after-month, even with increased competition from Senator Ted Cruz and Governor John Kasich . With a decrease in debates and an increased focus on the primaries, candidates are moving to social media to engage voters in their campaigns for upcoming electoral events.”

Republican Party

On Facebook, the Republican Party saw Cruz surpass Trump to take the lead for eValue score, corresponding to the candidate’s recent rise in popularity amongst Republican voters. All Republican candidates scored extremely well with respect to Engagement, with Trump leading the subcategory. Cruz and Trump both had impressive scores for Impact, with Kasich trailing behind in the subcategory, indicating that his content isn’t reaching as many voters as his fellow contenders. However, Kasich remained the most responsive to his followers on Facebook. Trump maintained the largest follower growth on the channel with just more than 347,000 new followers added in April.

Trump remained the leading GOP candidate on Twitter with much higher Engagement than the other candidates, the highest Impact score and the largest follower growth of approximately 412,500 followers during the month. Kasich ranked second with the highest Responsiveness score.

“Trump has consistently used his social media platforms to voice his opinions on hot topic issues, which has solidified his high engagement scores throughout the race,” said Segal. “As the competition heats up, and other candidates rise in popularity, using social channels simply for this purpose won’t be enough. Cruz’s election momentum is being translated online, enabling him to surpass Trump on Facebook. In addition, Kasich is doing extremely well on Twitter, using the platform to engage directly with citizens. Voters are looking for relatable candidates who post relevant content addressing their concerns and also take the time to communicate with their voters.”

Democratic Party

Sanders’ growing popularity in the polls was highlighted by his lead on Facebook. Boasting a much more active user base than Hillary Clinton, Sanders scored higher in Engagement and had more likes and shares per 1,000 fans. While Clinton scored higher for Impact, Sanders gained more followers, adding approximately 315,000 in April. One area of improvement for Sanders could be his Responsiveness, which remains at 0, highlighting that he has a strategy in place that involves not responding at all. Clinton took the month of April to apply a response strategy on Facebook to beat Sanders in the subcategory.

Sanders’ online success continued on Twitter with drastically higher eValue and Engagement scores than Clinton. Celebrating campaign successes, while tackling topics such as climate change and education, Sanders engaged his active user base to generate the most retweets, likes and mentions per 1,000 fans. Clinton beat Sanders for Impact, demonstrating that her content continues to have a higher reach than Sanders. Both candidates used the platform to respond and engage voters, however Sanders’ scored higher for Responsiveness. The candidates were neck-and-neck for follower growth, with Clinton just beating out Sanders with approximately 209,500 new followers during April.

“With his platform resonating well with younger voters, who are known to be active users on social media, Sanders is seeing his brand soar online. Clinton’s campaign must focus on the content they’re posting to expand their connection with audiences. While Clinton has a robust following, the content she’s sharing is not as engaging and relevant as Sanders’ content, causing her to lag on social media” noted Segal.

About Engagement Labs

Engagement Labs offers intelligent data, analytics and insights for marketers and organizations to track, measure and benchmark the conversations happening around their brand or industry, both online and offline. These conversations are proven to drive critical business outcomes, including sales, while Engagement Labs’ tools provide the data and actionable insight to help guide business decisions and power marketing effectiveness.

eValue™ Analytics is the global benchmarking tool for social media scoring. eValue’s proprietary data technology offers real-time analysis to measure a brand’s social media performance. TalkTrack®, from the Keller Fay Group, an Engagement Labs company, is the only data system to measures the totality of word of mouth – both online and offline. Engagement Labs maintains offices in Toronto, New Brunswick NJ, Montreal, and London.

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