The Impact of Social Media on the 2016 Election

Posted: October 8th 2015

2016 Presidential Election

The United States 2016 presidential election is scheduled for Tuesday, November 8, 2016. With only a little over a year to go, you can bet that politicians are strategizing the best tactics to communicate to you. While television advertising is still the preferred channel for political campaigns, social media has proven largely successful for some political candidates, even the president.

The President

In the 2008 and 2012 elections, Obama’s campaign leveraged social media to communicate to targeted audiences. These channels deemed fruitful, as he was able to bring out a larger pool of minorities to the voting polls, winning him the presidency—twice. Most recently, the president took over the white house’s Instagram account, and snapped a picture from Air Force One, flying over a mountain range. In other words, we can now officially refer to him as #Obamagram or #Presidentgram. With that said, it’s clear president Obama knows the importance of social media, and uses it regularly to keep up with the ever-changing digital climate.

Trump

Then there’s Donald Trump, currently the most followed political candidate running in the 2016 election. He’s known to provoke the masses, and the masses follow him along, at more than 8 million strong, across three major social media channels.

Social Engagement

Other candidates in the 2016 presidential election are not engaging with their audience on the same levels. Their lack of followers is indicative of that. Let’s view them.

2016 Presidential Candidates Social Standing

2016 Presidential Predictions

It’s evident Trump and Clinton have the largest following, succeeded by Ben Carson. And according to realclearpolitics.com, they’re leading the polls as well. Perhaps, there’s a correlation between who has the most social media followers, and as a result, wins the 2016 presidential election? If this assessment is correct, it’s between Trump or Carson, verses Clinton, at this point in the race. We’ll soon see though…

Most Followed Presidential Candidates

But one thing is for certain; if you’re not actively engaging on social media, amidst a digital world, you’re losing valuable impressions and voter attention.

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