We’ve lived through many pop culture name mergers. Most are power couples such as Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes (TomKat), Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie (Brangelina), and of course Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez (Bennifer 1.0) and then Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner (Bennifer 2.0). The one that is catching my attention these days is the one that will never appear on the cover of the National Enquirer. Of course this is the combination of British and Exit or Brexit. For those more familiar with the origins of TomKat than geopolitical news, Brexit is the term being used to refer to the June 23rd referendum regarding Britain’s membership in the European Union. The choice is to Brexit or I guess Bremain.
The power couples above get (or got) a lot of attention on social media and the same can be said for Brexit. There is no better source on the tone of what is being said about topics that may impact the business world than Social Market Analytics (SMA). SMA has created some great tools to analyze the sentiment around different individual companies, commodities, and even important events that may impact the financial markets (such as Brexit or the US election). You can learn more about SMA at www.socialmarketanalytics.com
I asked the guys from SMA on Monday what they were seeing as far as the activity around #Brexit on twitter. The results they provided could fill a small book, so in the interest of time and space I am going to provide a few highlights.
It turns out as of mid-morning today the Brexit hashtag (#Brexit) has been used almost 76,000 times in the previous 24 hours. Of those tweets about 13,500 of them included the hashtag #voteleave and 3,500 #leaveeu or about 17,000 to exit the EU. On the other side of the argument and appearing on the table below about 5,000 had the hashtag #remain and 4,200 #strongerin which comes to about 9,200 to stay in the EU. Also, keep in mind this election is still two weeks off, I can only imagine the amount of twitter traffic we will be seeing two weeks from now.
SMA can also monitor the overall sentiment around a topic. The chart below shows the tenor of tweets regarding Brexit over the 24-hour period through this morning. The sentiment trended downward over the course of the day yesterday and moved from positive to negative last evening. As voting approaches it will be interesting to see which side has the louder twitter voice.
I find the twitter results interesting because the latest polls show younger voters want to remain in the EU while older voters lean toward exiting. I would have expected the twitter results to lean more toward staying relative to SMA's results. My general thinking is younger people are more adept as using social media and if they lean toward staying in the EU that's what would appear on twitter as well.
SMA can also pull out the most popular tweets over a time period using a hashtag. I don’t think the most popular tweet gives an opinion, but it is sort of entertaining.
As I mentioned before, we still have two weeks to go until election day in Britain. As the referendum approaches I plan on keeping up with the latest polls and news about Brexit. However, I also plan on seeing what the chatter looks like on twitter from the guys at Social Market Analytics and will provide a couple of updates in this space.