Twitter Pulse: Chicago Mayoral Election 1/15 – 1/23

Chicago Mayoral Election

1/15/2011 – 1/23/2011

In the final weeks I added two other contenders to the analysis to see how the Twitter numbers match up with recent polls on the candidates. Additionally, I was told that Chico and Del Valle were actively using Twitter as part of their campaigns. From the breakdown, they may be actively using Twitter but they aren’t having much luck with it as a campaign tool. Here is the chart for this time frame:

Tweets about and from Rahm outnumber the rest of the candidates though he does receive a large number of negative Tweets, which are Tweets from people saying they will not vote for him. Moseley-Braun also receives a significant number of negative Tweets as well. roughly 12% of the Tweets concerning Moseley-Braun are negative compared to only 10% of the Tweets concerning Rahm. Del Valle comes in with the lowest percentage of negative Tweets at 1%. Chico has nearly 5% of his Tweets as negative.

The positive Tweets, those where individuals stated their desire to vote for the candidate, tell an interesting story. Chico has more people using Twitter to express their support of him, with 27% of the Tweets being positive. Del Valle comes in second with 24%. Rahm is at 19%. And Braun trails with nearly 12%. Compare these to the most recent poll on the candidates and it doesn’t match up.

On January 20th, the Chicago Tribune along with WGN released a poll on the race which showed support for Rahm to be at 44%, Moseley-Braun was at 21%, Chico at 16% and Del Valle is at 7% with only 9% undecided. Interestingly enough, the Twitter volume for the candidates does match the support shown in the poll.

Moseley-Braun did attempt to be innovative with the use of Twitter by holding a Twitter townhall but failed to strongly promote it, adopt a hashtag for it and encourage followers to retweet. Moseley-Braun also received the support of NOW but that barely got pushed out through Twitter. That is the kind of thing the campaign staff should be mentioning at least twice a day.

Time is running short for these candidates, Rahm looks to be sealing the deal. Rahm’s campaigning at El stops in Chicago really generate a lot of Tweets, especially when he has famous people there with him. Clinton’s arrival in the city also generated a lot of talk about Rahm. Then Moseley-Braun criticized Clinton by saying he hurt the minorities of Chicago. This received a lot of discussion, neither positive or negative, but a few did take issue with it.

I feel like Mosely Braun is becoming the Christine O’Donnell of the #chicagomayor race. Shes just saying nonsense now. -jjhparker

This is foolish to me: Moseley Braun: Clinton’s support for Rahm ‘a betrayal’ of black community via @huffingtonpost -Justen Boyd

Del Valle, with the least amount of money and apparently a very loyal base of followers could leverage social media the best. I’d like to see him do an ‘Old Spice’ like Town Hall, taking questions from his website, Twitter, and Facebook, answering the questions on video and posting them to YouTube. Each question has the possibility of being retweeted and discussed, reaching groups of people who may be unaware of his campaign. There is risk in this strategy though, if his answers are vapid and political instead of honest and practical this could sink the campaign completely. Yet, with only 7% support, what does he really have to risk? He can be Caleb Hanie making a bold play in the 4th quarter on 4th down with a minute on the clock. In the end, even if he loses, he still looks like a leader.

Check out the full Twitter Pulse analysis here.