Back in January I reviewed where both John Kasich and Governor Ted Strickland stood when it comes to engagement in social/direct media. Well, now is as good a time as any to do an update on their numbers.
It's hard to oversell the importance of social media in modern politics. Cutting out the middle man and interacting directly with the voters is a new mainstay in campaigns. Not only are candidates engaging more supporters directly, but that engagement encourages more involvement, and that involvement can snowball into an avalanche of grassroots support.
So, of the two candidates for Ohio Governor, who is inspiring more enthusiasm?
It's simple to determine, really. Gauge the two most popular forms of social media.
Who has more twitter followers, and how fast are they increasing?
And who has more fans on facebook?
We'll start with Twitter.
In January, Ted Strickland had 2,807 followers. As of last night, Ted's total had increased by 449 to 3,256.
What about Kasich? During our last measurement, Kasich had 9,772 followers. Now? 10,821. That's an increase of 1,049 people, or, more than double Strickland's rate of increase.
What about Facebook? "Fan pages" are popular for politicians and fantastic tools to communicate everything from phone bank hours to the latest press release. In January, Strickland's fan page had 8,168 fans. Since then it has jumped by 839 people to 9,007. In comparison, during our last update Kasich's fan page had 12,457 people. And now? 17,231. An increase of 4,774 people. That's more than five and a half times the rate of increase Strickland has experienced.
These dominating totals and, most importantly, rates of increase, say just as much about enthusiasm for Kasich's campaign as it does for the quality of Kasich's social media efforts. The better the social media outreach, the more committed your network of grassroots support becomes, the better your fundraising, and the easier it is to directly communicate your message to the masses.
And Kasich is clearly winning.