Facebook Insights From The First Social Election

By Jennifer Moire 

Now that the 2012 presidential election is in the record books, we can start to examine more closely the role that Facebook played in the first “social election” and how the winners and losers used the platform in the waning hours of the race.

As of Wednesday morning, the Facebook CNN-Election Insights tool iwa reporting that mentions of President Barack Obama on Facebook in the U.S. were up 119 percent since Tuesday, while mentions of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney were up 51 percent.

Obama was still winning the “who’s buzzing” war. People in the swing states that went to Obama (Colorado, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Virginia) have been buzzing more about Obama for the past 72 hours, as well as users in North Carolina, which landed in Romney’s column.

According to Time, in a story about the presidential campaign’s data machine,  one in five people contacted by a Facebook friend acted on a get out the vote request — such as registering to vote or going to the polls — because they were contacted by someone they knew.

What were Facebook users in the U.S. talking about? The U.S. Politics on Facebook page has a complete list, and here are the top 10 words.

  1. Obama
  2. 4 more years/4 years
  3. President/President Obama
  4. Thank God
  5. Won/Wins
  6. America
  7. Country/My Country/This Country
  8. Yes
  9. Ohio
  10. Florida

The candidates used Facebook to post messages and close out their campaigns. Romney shared a message of thanks to his supporters, which was shared 26,728 times and liked by more than 693,198 users.

Obama posted a photo featuring him with Michelle Obama, with the message, “Four More Years.” The post was liked a whopping 3,455,787 times and shared more than 443,643 times.

Brands even used Election Day to do some campaigning of their own. Woodford Reserve used Facebook sponsored stories to get in on the fun.

Readers, did you use Facebook to track the results on election night?