In Governor's Race, Two Different Social Media Strategies

Hynes more interactive, Quinn more promotional

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Twitter is worth $1 billion, according to a new report.

    Quinn is more popular, but Hynes is savvier.

    That's the lesson gleaned from a brief review of each candidate's accounts on Twitter and Facebook, where each campaign reveals divergent strategies.

    Twitter-wise, Hynes is clearly more proficient, but the benefit of that expertise is unclear.

    The Illinois comptroller has 870 followers -- almost four times his opponent -- and he (or his proxy) is highly engaged with other users.

    Hynes has tweeted 402 times. Of his last twenty tweets, three were directed at individual supporters and three provided links to a publication's coverage of the primary race. Somebody at Hynes' campaign is monitoring tweets and retweets, plus providing followers with info from non-campaign sources -- a relative rarity in tightly messaged campaigns.

    Quinn, meanwhile, has 229 Twitter followers, a low number for a sitting governor, especially one engaged in a tight primary campaign.

    And Quinn, against social media conventions, uses Twitter like a bullhorn. Since opening his account Sep 14th, Quinn hasn't replied or tweeted to another user. Several of his early tweets included only bit.ly links, with no indication what lay beyond.

    Both candidates rank in the bottom 1% of influential Twitter users, according to measurement service Twinfluence.

    On Facebook, the story's the same -- Hynes is more interactive, Quinn remains promotional. But here, Hynes wallows around 1,600 fans, while Quinn boasts over 9,100.

    As with Twitter, Hynes' campaign uses Facebook to post links to external sites and to write short comments. He also publishes amateur photos from his events.

    Quinn, on the other hand, seeds almost every post with YouTube videos and links to his campaign site.

    Conventional wisdom says the more fans and followers you have, the more clout, but what effect these strategies have on the candidates' campaigns (if any) isn't clear.

    Regardless, both men will face a tough social media challenge with the likely GOP candidate Andy McKenna: 1,865 Twitter followers, 1,985 Facebook fans, and rising.