November 05, 2008

Online Facebook Efforts Prove Successful for the Obama Campaign

By Jesse Stay of Stay N' Alive (Twitter/FriendFeed)

There's no question that Barack Obama won this election, and in a big way. With 7.3 million more votes than the McCain/Palin ticket, and almost twice the number of electoral votes as McCain/Palin, he obviously did something right. Today, Facebook released some statistics in a blog post, which reveal some of the reasons Obama and his campaign were so successful this campaign. (See: The Facebook Blog: The Spirit of Democracy)

According to Facebook, more than 5.4 million people clicked the "I voted" button on their network yesterday. Based on the McCain and Obama fan Pages, McCain garnered only 625,000 supporters while Obama built up an audience of four times that, with 2.5 million supporters, also making his the most popular page on Facebook, just above Michael Phelps, who has 1.6 million supporters.

In the days prior to the election, Obama garnered the largest growth in Facebook history, with 18,000 Sunday night, 25,000 Monday night, and an entire 40,000 new fans on election day. In contrast, McCain lost 300 fans/supporters on election day. Also on election day, Facebook tracked 1.1 million wall posts talking about Obama, and only 280,000 wall posts talking about McCain.

So far, 1 million people registered their status to get people out to vote via the causes application, and over 4 million status messages were sent out on or around election day. Facebook also partnered with RockYou to get out the vote and registered more than 50,000 voters. With over 5 million people on Facebook stating they voted, and the largest group on Facebook being those under 25, there's no doubt Facebook is a tool every candidate should pay careful attention to in the next election. With 1/6th of its North American users willing to say they voted, I'd say McCain made a big mistake this time distracting his focus from tools like Facebook and other Media outlets.

Do you think McCain's loss could have been due to lack of Social Media efforts?

Read more by Jesse Stay at Stay N' Alive.