London Mayoral Election 2012

A real-time social overview

 

What an evening… after further delays and many more ballot boxes from the Constituency of Brent & Harrow to count – Friday night felt a little bit like waiting for Christmas, certainly for Boris Johnson!

There’s a great quote from Robert Orben, “Do you ever get the feeling that the only reason we have elections is to find out if the polls were right?”

Not only the polls were right, but so was our real-time infographic that followed the online conversation around the five candidates, that were most active on social channels, during the last month. After many hours of waiting and a run-off vote, Boris Johnson has been re-elected with a tighter than expected margin of three percentage points (51.53% to 48.47%).

We used Radian6 to analyse the 180,803 social conversations about the election since January 2012 and Heroku as the application platform. This way, voters could get a constantly updated picture about the discussions and talking points that Londoners are raising around the Mayoral Election.

In the 24 hours before the announcement Boris Johnson has had the majority of online conversation: 62.8%, followed a far distance behind by Ken Livingston at 22.4%. In fact, for most of the last month, Boris has maintained the Mayor’s share of online conversation, with the other candidates sharing the remainder. However, the election results show us that the race was much closer than the social conversations would lead us to believe.

The infographic also kept track of the main discussions and talking points that Londoners were raising around the Mayoral Election in the last seven days. Plus voters could find out what blogs had the highest influence amongst voters and who owned the conversation on Twitter: Brian Ballantyne (@Brianballantyne), CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) and House Of Twits (@Houseoftwits).

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