Four years ago a little known senator, Barack Obama, became the 44th President of the United States of America. Many experts suggest that one of the most influential factors for President Obama’s win in the previous election was his engagement on social media channels.
It is now another election year and there are plenty of opportunities for the presidential candidates to utilize social media. Since his 2008 campaign for president, Obama has changed the way the public engages with political candidates running for office.
President Obama is still the social-media-savvy candidate who reaches out to voters on the online platforms where they communicate. President Obama’s social media accounts are primarily run by his campaign staff, but Obama signs the tweets he writes with -BO.
Moreover, President Obama’s Facebook and Twitter supporters leaves Republican presidential candidates in the dust. He has more than 25 million Facebook fans and more than 12.5 million Twitter followers, according to the infographic below, created by PRMarketing.com.
Other candidates have followed Obama’s social media lead. Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich split the second place. Romney comes in second with 1.4 million Facebook Likes, while Newt Gingrich has 1.4 million Twitter followers, ranking him the second most followed 2012 election candidate, although many of his followers’ accounts are inactive. A former Gingrich staffer told Gawker that Gingrich purchased Twitter followers on eBay.
Ron Paul is the third most followed candidate with more than 862,000 Facebook Likes and more than 130,000 Twitter followers. Rick Santorum is next to last with nearly 130,000 Twitter followers and more than 138,000 Facebook Likes. Gary Johnson, the libertarian who has been in and out of the race, has the least amount of Facebook Likes and Twitter followers, but he is building his following. He has more than 23,000 Twitter followers and 149,000 Facebook Likes.