The race for the 2016 Republican Party Presidential Primaries is heating up alongside the weather, with more than a dozen candidates now having thrown in their lot.
The most recent candidate to declare — other than the super-famous Donald Trump, whose hair probably gets more mentions on Twitter than your average federal politician — was Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal on June 24.
(Despite a rash of tweets yesterday disparaging Jindal via the #bobbyjindalissowhite hashtag, these made up a very small percentage of our dataset as most tweets containing this hashtag did not use Jindal’s official handle).
At MediaMiser, we’ve already used our social media analysis tools to explore the impact of declaring your candidacy early: As we showed last April, Ted Cruz raked in more attention than he’s gotten in his Twitter lifetime after being first to declare on March 23.
So today we ran a share-of-voice analysis of June’s Twitter volume for each candidate not named Trump — his celebrity status makes any comparison a bit unfair, don’t you think? — to see which way the social winds are blowing this month.
We’ve also indicated who declared their candidacies in June (for the record, it’s Jeb Bush, Rick Perry, Bobby Jindal and Lindsey Graham), as these candidates typically receive a bump in popularity upon declaring.
From our analysis, Ted Cruz is still the candidate to beat a full three months after his candidacy declaration.
Jeb Bush also had a strong showing this month, while Marco Rubio and Rand Paul aren’t far behind. After that, candidate popularity drops off significantly with June declarees Rick Perry and Jindal rounding out the top six.
In fact, of all candidates to declare in June, Lindsey Graham was the only one not to finish in the top six — instead tallying a second-last total mention count. And although social media mentions obviously don’t translate into votes, that’s not a good omen for his campaign.
Finally, George Pataki, the former New York governor, was dead last in mentions with less than one per cent of all declared candidate mentions. That’s despite declaring his candidacy just a few weeks ago (in late May). Poor George.