Ukip is the most talked about UK political party on social media in the run up to the 2015 general election according to We Are Social figures.
The social media firm analysed political discourse on Facebook and Twitter during the three-month period running up to January 2015 discovering that Ukip garnered the most online attention.
On Twitter, Ukip had a 30 per cent share of conversation, followed by 29 per cent for Labour, a quarter for the Conservatives and 11 per cent for the Scottish National Party (SNP). The Green Party and Liberal Democrats lagged behind.
On Facebook, Ukip was the fastest growing party, recording a growth of eight per cent. The Green Party grew by seven per cent, as did the Conservatives. The SNP followed with five per cent growth, then Labour (four per cent) and the Lib Dems (three per cent).
Prime Minister David Cameron was included in just under a third of conversations. Ukip’s Nigel Farage was the focal point of a quarter of online discussions and Ed Miliband featuring in a further fifth. Nicola Sturgeon came fourth with 12 per cent, Nick Clegg eight per cent and Natalie Bennett of the Green Party took three per cent.
Paul Greenwood, senior research and insight director at We Are Social, said: “Current Twitter conversation volumes show that UKIP has stolen a march on the larger parties, partly due to having their first two MPs elected to Parliament in that timeframe, however, looking at this in a more holistic manner, Labour seems more at home than most other parties on Twitter, with a consistent tone of voice and wide reach, talking about the issues that matter to the public.
“At the moment on social media, it’s the challenger parties that seems to be making a play for the potential voters on social with the Green Party and Ukip performing well, albeit, often from a smaller base making percentage growth easier. While the SNP’s growth has been fairly strong, they are hard to judge because their social channels have been positively affected by the referendum even after September.”
Greenwood stated that social media stats do not make for good predictors of elections, noting Scottish Referendum predictions made using social media data were often dramatically wrong.
On the Tories’ online presence, he concluded: “On Facebook, the Conservative Party’s content is more engaging than Labour’s and appeals to a wider audience. However, Twitter doesn’t feel like a natural home for the Tories; they’re too formal and have a much lower posting frequency than the other parties.”
Earlier this week, Ukip’s PR chief, Matthew Richardson, admitted that the party represents bigots.