Online buzz louder for Barack Obama

Still, ahead in video streams

Going into the headiest two weeks in the presidential race so far, the buzz for Democratic candidate Barack Obama online is still much louder than it is for his Republican rival John McCain.

On the eve of the Dems' confab in Denver, the Nielsen Co. unveiled an overview of the presidential campaign this summer, providing a closer look at the candidates' Internet presence, the online chatter, their increasingly pointed ad campaigns as well as some perspective on TV viewership for past political conventions.

Among the key findings:

Online audience and videos viewed: In July 2008 the number of video streams on more than doubled, possibly because of press coverage around McCain's ad comparing Obama to Paris Hilton. Despite being behind in total video streams in July,'s unique audience was twice as large as's in both June and July 2008.

Blogs: The Huffington Post site includes the most mentions of both candidates (June-Aug. 17), though Obama maintains the lead in overall buzz volume on blogs and message boards.

Campaign ads: On the advertising front, the "Obama for America" image-based online ad campaign was in July five times bigger than the previous month -- 417 million impressions in July 2008 vs. 80 million online impressions in June 2008.

Top states for TV spots: During June and July 2008, both Obama and McCain targeted their local TV spots at key battleground states including Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

TV viewership for political conventions:
Historically, more homes tune in to Democratic National Conventions. In fact, there have only been three election years in which more households tuned in to the Republican National Convention -- 1972 (presumptive nominee Richard Nixon), 1976 (presumptive nominee Gerald Ford) and 2004 (presumptive nominee George W. Bush).

The actual breakdown of data, supplied by various units of Nielsen, were unveiled Aug. 21. The Hollywood Reporter is owned by the Nielsen Co.


Despite being behind in total video streams in July, had a unique audience twice that of in June and July 2008

Unique Audience for Presidential Candidates

June 2008: 3,091,000
July 2008: 3,330,000

June 2008: 1,239,000
July 2008: 1,592,000

Source: Nielsen Online, NetView U.S. Home and Work


Among the nearly 80 million blogs tracked by Nielsen Online's BuzzMetrics service, the following are the blogs that mention McCain and Obama between June 1 and Aug. 17 ranked by volume of messages mentioning the candidate.

John McCain

The Huffington Post

Barack Obama

The Huffington Post

Source: Nielsen Online, BuzzMetrics
comments powered by Disqus