Yes Newt, They're Up
As Newt Gingrich took to the airwaves and Twitter yesterday to announce his candidacy for President, we decided to take a look at what (if any) effect
Gingrich's announcement had on his already formidable social networking
presence. The results confirmed what we already knew; Newt Gingrich may have
his weaknesses as a candidate but his internet following remains formidable.
Since Tuesday, the day before his official announcement,
Gingrich has picked up over 3,500 new Facebook fans and nearly 4,800 new
Twitter followers according to OhMyGov Media Monitoring. Not staggering
numbers, but still impressive gains for an already well known candidate who
prior to his announcement enjoyed a high profile social media presence.
Gingrich remains the single most popular GOP candidate on
Twitter, boasting well over 1.3 million followers. The next most popular
would-be nominee, Donald Trump, lags far behind with a relatively meager
(compared to Newt) 567,000+ devotees. Meanwhile Mitt Romney, viewed by some as
the prohibitive favorite for the nomination, has only about 40,000 followers
making him merely the ninth most popular Republican White House hopeful on
Meanwhile, over on Facebook Gingrich remains a strong
presence but not nearly as much so as on Twitter. Gingrich's 135,000+ fans make
him merely the seventh most popular candidate on the social networking
megasite. Gingrich is ahead of probable also-rans like Gary Johnson and Herman
Cain in terms of fans, but that is not likely to impress any potential voters
with an eye for social media. He also trails well behind the likes of Michele
Bachmann and Ron Paul, and doesn't even come close to Sarah Palin's nearly 3
So what do these numbers tell us about Gingrich's online
strength, not to mention his electablity? The former Mr. Speaker is in a class
by himself on Twitter, a medium that allows him to reach a huge audience with
rapid response and quick sound bites...an invaluable resource in the 24/7 news
Any time Gingrich fires off a 140 character missive well
over a million followers receive it in real time, which does not even cover the
millions who will then hear his thoughts as they are inevitably repeated by
news outlets. This may ultimately prove to be a greater resource to Gingrich's
fledgling campaign than the more long-form nature of Facebook, where the magnum
opus notes of Sarah Palin are the prevailing style.
Whether or not Gingrich can capture the nomination is
clearly up for debate. But as the post-announcement bounce for his already
solid social media numbers show, this is a man with a sizable audience. An
audience that will listen when he talks, or when he tweets.
All charts and graphs copyright OhMyGov Inc.