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6 ways social media influenced the Manx election

The Facebook election?

The Facebook election?

The votes are in, and the winners and losers have been announced – so how did Facebook influence the Manx general  election?

I’m feeling fairly smug, as many of the candidates I trained did win their contests (I’m running at a success rate of about 60 per cent).

So 24 people have been elected out of a total of 63 candidates.

But did those who won have a Facebook page? Is there any correlation between having a properly-managed social media presence and winning an election in the Isle of Man?

Well, given those who will be taking seats in the House of Keys are just 38 per cent of the field, let’s see how they fared online.

The aptly-named Sir Not-Appearing-In-This-Movie

The easiest statistic to analyse is people who have no sort of presence on Facebook whatsoever.

John Houghton is among just 22 per cent of adults aged 16 to 60 who are not on Facebook.

And he lost the election despite defending a seat in Douglas North he’d held for years.

So it is important to be on social media? It would seem so, although that sample size is far too small to be able to say “nobody who’s not on Facebook won the election” with any sort of authority.

Still, it’s interesting to note everybody who won a seat in the House of Keys does at least have a personal profile on the site.

Pages and Profiles

I was contacted by one candidate protesting a personal profile is good enough to campaign with. So do the figures bear that out?

Of those who stood:

41% of those with Facebook pages won

33% of those with personal profiles won

There’s an eight per cent difference in the figures – not necessarily an election-winning margin, but big enough to be statistically significant. If you have a Facebook page, you are more likely to be elected.

Another interesting figure is this; of successful candidates:

66% used a Facebook page

33% used a personal profile

That’s much more telling: two-thirds of the House of Keys have Facebook pages. If you had a proper presence on the world’s largest social media site, you are twice as likely to be elected as someone who just used their personal profile to spread their message.

The best defence

It’s difficult to draw any concrete conclusions, given how many factors affect an election. It’s especially hard to reach a firm data-driven view on the Isle of Man, where many elections are decided by things other than policy or ideology.

But does that mean candidates who defend seats automatically have an advantage?

Well, of those who were trying to retain their seats:

83% of those with Facebook pages successfully defended their seat

70% of those who use personal profiles successfully defended their seat

There’s a 13 per cent difference there… representing a significant stat. If you had a Facebook page, you were more likely to defend your place in parliament.

In the next results post, I’ll take a look at how data about Likes and the length of time a page has run for successful and unsuccessful candidates.

If your organisation would like training in how to make Facebook fizz and social media sparkle, click here to find out what Chips Cheese Gravy Media can do for you!


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