Its no secret that social media can be a powerful tool to impact human behavior, but it’s been mostly unknown just how effective this type of communication can be, especially when it comes to actions like voting. But scientists at the University of California, San Diego recently conducted a study that suggests a single Facebook message that went viral encouraged over 340,000 people to vote in the 2010 mid-term election. How many Americans have changed their political opinions or voting preferences because of social media, and could a similar trend happen in this year’s election?
In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 26% of US respondents said they are not currently registered to vote. 15% said they have registered within the last year. 14% have registered within the last five years. 9% have registered within the last ten years. And 37% said they registered to vote over ten years ago.
64% of respondents said they definitely intend to vote in this year’s election. Another 13% said they are still unsure as to whether or not they will vote. And 24% said they do not intend to vote at all. Of those who have not yet registered to vote, just 11% said they definitely plan to vote in the coming election, and 21% are unsure.
Only 5% of potential voters said that their political opinions have been impacted very much by social media posts. 21% said that their opinions have been somewhat impacted by social media. 61% said their opinions have not been impacted at all by social media. And 12% said they don’t use social media. Those who are unsure as to whether or not they will vote this year were more likely to be impacted by social media.
8% of Americans said that social media has had a big impact on their decision to vote in general. And another 14% said that social media has had some impact on their decision to vote. 78% said social media has had no impact on their decision to vote. Respondents under the age of 35 were 15% more likely to be impacted by social media posts.
8% of overall respondents said they often share their political opinions or information with others on social media. 15% said they sometimes share political opinions on social media. 14% said they rarely talk politics on social media. And 63% said that they never make political posts.
You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.
What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.
Results were collected on September 13 via AYTM’s online survey panel.