- Oct 31, 2000
After betting big on Twitter ads, the Romney campaign just saw their first sponsored hashtag go wrong. After promoting #AreYouBetterOff to the top of Twitter's list of trending hashtags as a criticism of President Obama's economic policies, a surprising number of tweets came in saying, Yes, they are better off.
But exactly how many tweets were defending President Obama? By our calculations, it's a Mockery Ratio of nearly 5:1.
Most talk about the economy is negative (also, it seems, about politics in general), so sentiment analysis doesn't quite work on #AreYouBetterOff. Instead, I searched the Twitter analytic tool Topsy for simple "yes" and "no" answers. There might be some false positives in there, but even as a rough analysis, the numbers weren't encouraging. Over the two days of the DNC (when the hashtag was promoted), Topsy clocked 5,637 "yes" tweets, compared with just 1,121 "no" tweets, for a general ratio of 5:1.
Thanks to Twitter's overdeveloped instinct for mockery, this is a fairly common tale. In fact, in the early days of Twitter advertising, it was so common that it even earned an insufferably jargony name: a bashtag. McDonalds and Disney are just two of the companies that have seen their promoted hashtags used against them. But when you crunch the numbers, Romney's stacks up as one of the worst bashtags Twitter's seen.