By October 4, 2011 0 Comments Read More →

Digital analysis of the Manitoba election

It’s election day in Manitoba. So, Here’s a rundown of the online chatter surrounding that election. All analysis was performed using Sysomos Heartbeat.

Twitter leads mainstream media in online conversation about the election

There was a healthy conversation about the election on Twitter and Facebook also figures heavily into the election dialog. Mainstream media remains a significant player in the online chatter, just 6% behind Twitter in offering the greatest number of online mentions about the election.

Male dominated conversation

The challenge with demographic and gender breakdowns of the digital world is results are based only on accounts which disclose demographic and gender information. Not everyone does that online. So, the results are based on a statistically relevant sample. The number of disclosing accounts is indicated in the graph. This graph is consistent with most online political activity I’ve tracked to date.

Greg Selinger has a slight lead in online mentions among leaders

It’s a fairly tight race for most online mentions among the major party leaders. NDP leader Greg Selinger has a slight lead over Conservative leader Hugh McFadyen, who has a slight lead over Liberal leader Jon Gerard. Green Party leader James Beddome barely ranks in the conversation. It’s important to note this analysis doesn’t consider sentiment. That means just because a party leader might be mentioned more often doesn’t mean the consensus is positive.

Education, taxes and energy were leading issues

The top six most mentioned issues I tracked online during the election campaign were:

  1. education (2,115 mentions, 19.3%)
  2. taxes (2,016 mentions, 18.4%)
  3. energy (1,860 mentions, 17.0%)
  4. healthcare (1,703 mentions, 15.5%)
  5. business (1,650 mentions, 15.0%)
  6. family (1,622 mentions, 14.8%)

@MBelection and @GregSelinger among most active tweeters

The citizen-created @MBelection Twitter account was the most active among non-media tweeters in the election. Others include Liberal leader @DrJonGerrard, @mbchambersofcom, @MBLiberal and creative communications student @dponticelli.

Key participants, something others often call key influencers, are those who are considered more likely to get others to share content or follow through on a call to action. I prefer the former term since influence can sometimes appear where strategists least expect it and fail to deliver where they hope it will. The two leading key participants are NDP leader @GregSelinger and University of Winnipeg student @BrittanyMaria.

Connected conversations

Buzzgraphs are a bit hard to explain. Still, digital analysts like myself appreciate them because they show how common elements of the online conversation are connected. The strength of the relationships between connected elements is indicated by the type of connector. Strong relationships (where mentions occur more frequently) are represented by thick, solid lines. Medium relationships are reflected by thin, solid lines. Weaker relationships (where mentions occur least frequently) are indicated by thin, broken lines.

This buzzgraph indicates a significant number of tweets included links (t.co is a URL shortener associated with Twitter) to resources about a variety of subjects. Here we see specific elements of recent discussions including hydro, the boreal forest and health.

More analysis to come

I plan to do some comparative analysis of the four provincial elections next week.

avatar

About the Author:

Mark Blevis is a digital public affairs strategist and President of FullDuplex.ca, an integrated digital communications, public affairs and research company. His work focuses on the role of digital tools and culture on issues and reputation management. He also leads research into how Canadian opinions are shaped through online content and interactions.