In week-long COC filing, Robredo and Marcos ruled social media, says analytics firm
MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo and former senator Bongbong Marcos generated the most social media buzz before and during the week-long (October 1-October 8) filing of the certificate of candidacy (COC), according to a study by a media analytics firm Isentia PH.
In their Prelude to the Polls report obtained by INQUIRER.net on Wednesday, Isentia PH said that their monitoring of social media channels Facebook, Twitter, Reddit and YouTube showed that Robredo garnered around 1.7 million social buzzes. In comparison, Marcos came in second with 1.1 million social buzzes.
Meanwhile, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, another presidential aspirant, got 390,000 social media buzzes, Senator Ronald dela Rosa with 254,000 social media buzzes, and Senator Manny Pacquiao with 210,000 Senator Panfilo Lacson with 60,000 buzzes.
“Notably, Robredo and Marcos gained more mentions than each of the other candidates combined. The existing tension between the two – stemming from their rivalry for the Vice Presidential race in the 2016 elections, and multiple accusations of election fraud – has led to heavy online discussions from netizens supporting or criticizing either candidate,” Isentia PH said.
“This would be the catalyst for the two’s rise in mentions,” it added.
According to Isentia PH, while their analysis does not indicate positive or negative social media buzz, other candidates can see it as a tool to identify why Robredo and Marcos had a massive gap in social media engagement.
“The trajectory in a mix of arguments, praises, and social media parley pertaining to Robredo and Marcos is an area the other candidates should look into,” the firm said.
“The rest of the presidentiables can delve into the favorable or unfavorable conversation drivers and thematic messages coming out of Robredo and Marcos mentions which will help them understand what drove the gap in their buzz and if there [are] any underlying attributions they can take a cue from,” it added.
For example, Isentia PH said that Lacson’s decision to announce his candidacy ahead of the pack did not translate to social media engagement. The firm also noted that since Lacson filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) on the same day that Marcos did, he had to share social media engagement with another candidate.
“Senator Ping Lacson’s early announcement – taking place on September 8 – did not translate to sustained online buzz as Lacson logged the lowest mentions among all candidates during this period. Adding to this, Senator Lacson filed his COC on the same day as Bongbong Marcos, showing his mentions drowning out in the sea of social media discussions,” Isentia PH claimed.
“With the considerable buzz linked to Marcos, Senator Lacson’s filing was nonetheless overshadowed. Candidates must be conscious of when and where they would launch their materials and prepare for strategic content in the event of an unanticipated announcement or happening kickoff at the same time. Timing and choice of priority platforms are significant factors to look into during critical milestones of the elections,” it added.
Isentia PH also cited Moreno as an example of why candidates need to monitor their media positioning. He garnered several social media buzzes when he filed his COC on October 4. However, engagements returned on October 8, when he showed his frustration about the hashtag #WithdrawIsko which was a call for him to quit the race in favor of Robredo.
“While he made rounds on the same day, his name peaked more on October 8 after he ignited in anger at a press conference responding to the coined #WithdrawIsko that trended – a catalyst of which was Vice President Robredo’s decision to run for President,” the firm said.
“This suggests that the way a candidate reacts or responds to critical mentions drives conversations, albeit mixed that could make or break his media positioning. A candidate must remain to be on their toes and should be actively aware of mentions and messages relating to their name, and hence consistently monitor,” it explained.
Aside from this, the company said that the people could also learn from what other teams did right — like in the case of Robredo’s campaign team when they embraced the “Leni Lugaw” moniker instead of trying to hide or shy away from the supposedly negative insinuation.
“As expected, not everyone was supportive of Vice President Robredo’s declaration to run for President. Some netizens branded her as “Leni Lugaw” (porridge) as an insult. This was prompted after pictures of her campaign team associated with porridge spread online during the 2016 elections,” Isentia PH said.
“Despite this, Vice President Robredo’s camp was ready to counter the supposed insult. She embraced the “lugaw” brand and turned the smear attempt to her advantage by serving rice porridge to the attendees of her presidential bid announcement,” it added.
The 2022 presidential race is shaping up to be tight, with big names making big moves in recent days. On Tuesday, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, who substituted as a vice presidential candidate, formalized her tandem with Marcos, even if they were running under different parties.
Joining Robredo, Moreno, Lacson, Marcos, Pacquiao, and labor leader Leody de Guzman in the presidential race is Senator Bong Go, who substituted for the presidency. Controversial military man and retired Armed Forces of the Philippines Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade Jr. has also thrown his hat for the seat in Malacañang.
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