Last week a media monitoring company sent me an email that linked me to a story on the social share of voice of the various candidates competing in Iowa today.
It reminded me of a similar report, I did in 2003 when a crowded field of Democrats were all battling for dominance in the media. Back in 2003, pre-Twitter and Facebook, there was no such thing as “social share of voice.” What mattered the most then was local newspapers, so we collected, read, and analyzed coverage of the major Democratic candidates that appeared in local media. At the time, we were pretty certain that Howard Dean, given his dominant share of voice, would soon be on his way to the White House. Governor Dean captured 42% of all the relevant media coverage, compared to just 19% for John Kerry. Additionally, Dean dominated in three out of four key primary states.
Interestingly, we also noted that Wesley Clark (you remember him, right?) was the candidate most frequently searched for in Google, so we declared him the winner of the” Candidate Curiosity Index.” Apparently once people satisfied their curiosity, they voted for someone else.
Since there is no President Dean in U.S. History books thus far, and as the media frenzy blankets Iowa in a deeper pile of whatever Jonas left in D.C., I thought I might share this report, in hopes that we might all keep a bit of perspective.scan0002