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Online Trends

Published February 10th 2016

React: The New Hampshire Primary and the Influence of Debates

Brandwatch analyzes social data surrounding the New Hampshire Primary and last week's debates.

The dust has barely settled from the tumultuous shake up that was the New Hampshire Primary.

On February 9th, 11 candidates let the people of New Hampshire decide their fate in the first primary of this presidential race.

Trump and Sanders were hailed winners early on with a 34.1% and 57.6% majority, respectively.

Not everyone was thrilled with Donald Trump’s win; at one stage last night we noticed that the term “sad to hear” was trending, due to one tweet that had been copied and retweeted by thousands of people.

Republican Reshuffle

There will be some mixed feelings in the Republican party camp following the results, for a few reasons.

Firstly, governor John Kasich, who placed 8th in the Iowa caucus, came in second behind Donald Trump. However, his significant win was not reflected on social – the governor accumulated just over 50k mentions, accounting for a mere 3% of the overall conversation.

In the meantime three GOP candidates battled it out for third place – Bush, Cruz and Rubio. By the end of the night Bush had been placed third, with Cruz and Rubio coming in behind him.

Marco Rubio, who has always been considered a frontrunner in the race, may be blaming his fifth place finish on his weak performance in the debate on Saturday.

The senator came under heavy fire from Chris Christie for his supposed inability to deviate from the script. This moment was the biggest of the night on social and drove a spike of almost 4,000 mentions in one minute.

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 17.09.43

At the close of the debate on Saturday, Trump (61%), Kasich (57%) and Cruz (57%) all occupied places in the top four spots of our online sentiment poll.

The Democratic Point of View

It wasn’t much of a surprise that Sanders took the Democratic win in NH. He boasted a significant lead in the polls and went into the vote with 65% positive sentiment score, compared to Clinton’s 45% positive score.

Important to note is that Clinton and Sanders are usually neck and neck in terms of online mention volume. It can’t be said that one leads over the other as it is in constant fluctuation. That was not true on Tuesday night.

Sanders won and understandably gained more attention on social media but at the close of the night Sanders had a lead of almost 200k mentions.

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 17

Even more noteworthy is the fact that at one point Bernie Sanders (210k) overtook Donald Trump (200k) in share of voice. This is a rare occurrence as Trump consistently drives the most mention volume of all the candidates.

Although, by the end of the night, Trump had regained his lead.

Social’s opinion

By the time the votes were tallied many candidates hovered around the 50/50 mark in terms of sentiment, with the exception of Trump, Kasich, Cruz, Sanders and Carson.

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 17.13.00

Kasich and Trump finished on top with 75% and 73% respectively. A good night all round for these the two Republicans.

The next two debates, on Thursday (Democrats) and Saturday (GOP), are sure to be interesting as the balance of power has been shifted heavily in Trump’s and Sanders’ favor with the rest of the pack scrambling to make a good impression.

Tune into @BW_React for live insights and updates.  


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