Red State, Blue State: The Social Network VP Debate Divide Shown In Map Form

In addition to the spikes in search activity, Thursday’s U.S. Vice-Presidential Debate also heated up across popular social networks.

You won’t be surprised to know that both Twitter and Facebook saw plenty of debate-related discussion, and I’ll share some of that in a moment. But I want to start with a fascinating map from a different source.

AddThis & The VP Debate

AddThis, provider of social sharing buttons used by 14 million domains, shared debate-related data today, including this map showing which candidate had the most social mentions across the U.S.


(Click for larger version.)

I’ve reached out to AddThis to get some clarity on exactly what this is showing, but I believe it’s a geographic representation of Biden- and Ryan-related social content that drove traffic to websites using AddThis buttons. If AddThis replies and says I’m wrong, I’ll add a correction here.

In that same article, AddThis says 79 percent of Joe Biden social referrals came from Twitter, while 66 percent of Paul Ryan referrals were from Facebook, plus another 12 percent from Facebook “likes.”

Twitter & The VP Debate

Twitter reports that the debate generated about four million tweets overall, 3.5 million of which were during the debate itself. And, as was the case with last night’s search activity, the buzzword on Twitter was “malarkey” with more than 30,000 tweets.

Here’s a chart that Twitter created showing the most active moments last night, topped by Vice President Biden asking Rep. Ryan, “Now you’re Jack Kennedy?”


(Click for larger version.)

Facebook & The VP Debate

Facebook says that Biden had 36 percent more mentions than Ryan last night, and Obama had 27 percent more mentions than Romney. Overall buzz on Facebook about Biden is up 4,600 percent over the past day. (And all of that data contradicts what AddThis reported as driving referral traffic to its publisher sites; see above.)


(Click for larger version.)

Facebook says last night’s debate scored a 6.79 on its Talk Meter, which puts it in line with the 2012 Academy Awards. That’s lower than the first presidential debate, which scored an 8.18, and the Obama and Clinton speeches during the Democratic National Convention, which scored 7.28 and 7.08 respectively.

Related Topics: Channel: Strategy | Facebook | Facebook: Statistics | Features & Analysis | Social Media Marketing | Statistics | Statistics: Online Behavior | Statistics: Social Media | Top News | Twitter | Twitter: Statistics


About The Author: is Editor-In-Chief of Marketing Land. His news career includes time spent in TV, radio, and print journalism. His web career continues to include a small number of SEO and social media consulting clients, as well as regular speaking engagements at marketing events around the U.S. He recently launched a site dedicated to Google Glass called Glass Almanac and also blogs at Small Business Search Marketing. Matt can be found on Twitter at @MattMcGee and/or on Google Plus. You can read Matt's disclosures on his personal blog.

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  • Louis Sokol

    Unless you know if a social mention is positive or negative this data is absolutely useless. Talking about either candidate shows red or blue but it is going to be a mix of good and bad. if we had that taken into account then we could derive some meaning from the activity.

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