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How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
How america searches   election 08 update
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How america searches election 08 update

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  • 1. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATESURVEY CONDUCTED BY OPINION RESEARCH CORPORATIONANALYSIS AND REPORT CREATED BY ICROSSINGAPRIL 2008
  • 2. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008KEY FINDINGS + The Internet’s influence on politics grows. The number of potential voters turning to the Internet for election information has increased by 31 percent since the original How America Searches: Election ‘08 report was published in July, 2007. The Internet, previously tied with newspapers as the second most popular channel, now leads newspapers 55 percent to 47 percent as an election information resource. + Issues still of top importance to searchers. Eighty-seven percent of potential voters search about election issues, and finding more information about a candidate’s position on a specific issue remains the leading reason they conduct candidate searches (85%). + The economy and health care join war in Iraq and gas prices, as top issues of interest online. Interest in global warming cools. Searches related to the economy have grown 29 percent and global warming has been knocked out of the top 10 issues searched online. The most popular issues are currently health care (49%), the economy (49%), war in Iraq (48%), and gas prices (44%). + Candidate search volumes are up. Obama holds lead nationally and in Pennsylvania. Candidate search volumes have increased greatly since the original How America Searches: Election ‘08 report, with Obama leading the number of voter searches by a wide margin. This margin over Clinton is also seen in searches conducted in Pennsylvania in the run-up to that state’s Democratic Primary. + Obama leads on natural search results for issues. All candidates are weak on paid search results for issues. Barack Obama leads on issues-related natural search visibility, with 60 percent share of market followed by Ron Paul (36%), Hillary Clinton (3%), and John McCain (1%). Paid search on issues-related keywords is much lower than that of candidate-related keywords; McCain and Obama are each estimated to spend one percent of total paid spend on issues-related keywords, while Clinton’s presence in issues-related paid search results is negligible. + More women turn to the Web to learn about candidates and issues. The original How America Searches: Election ‘08 report showed that men conducted election research online at much higher rates than women (47% vs. 38%). Currently, both genders rely on the Internet equally for election- related information; 56 percent of men and 54 percent of women.© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 2
  • 3. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008INTRODUCTION Nine months have passed since iCrossing published its original How America Searches: Election ’08 report in July, 2007. This research gauged the interests of potential voters toward the 2008 presidential campaign, exploring their attitudes and behaviors with respect to researching candidates and issues online. It also measured the visibility of presidential candidates in both natural and paid search results, to determine what voters were actually finding when they conducted Internet searches. This update to iCrossing’s original report both uncovers fresh insights and reconfirms several key findings, as it revisits the influence of new media on American politics. The report first explores voters’ choices of online and offline channels for seeking election-related information; and uncovers disproportionate growth in Internet use compared with many traditional channels. It then focuses more narrowly on the online channel, revealing there has been little change overall in the types of Web sites potential voters visit to learn about candidates and issues. The role that search plays for voters is next examined - illuminating changing attitudes toward the importance of top election issues, as well as re-establishing voter levels of interest in the various presidential candidates. Just as important as what individuals are searching on, is what they are finding when they do seek information online; the latter part of the Election ’08 Update report gauges the effectiveness of each candidate’s natural and paid search visibility, for both candidate- and issues-related keywords. Lastly, new content has been added to examine search volume on the Democratic candidates, going into the April 22 Pennsylvania Primary.© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 3
  • 4. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008CHOICE OF CHANNELS The Internet is more essential to politics than ever before. In fact, its importance has grown compared to nine months ago when the original How America Searches: Election ‘08 report was published. As the election draws nearer, increasing numbers of potential voters are looking for information about issues and candidates online; use of the Internet for this research has grown by 31 percent. Most traditional channels showed weaker growth; TV increased 23 percent, radio increased 16 percent, and newspapers increased 12 percent. Though newspapers used to be tied with the Internet as voters’ number two source of information (behind number one, TV), the Internet has unseated its traditional counterpart. Notably, men and women now rely equally upon the Internet for information on candidates and issues (M56% vs. W54%), whereas previously men conducted online research at much higher rates (M47% vs. W38%). USE OF DIFFERENT CHANNELS TO FIND INFORMATION ABOUT ISSUES AND CANDIDATES, 2008 VS. 2007 Which, if any, of the following channels do you use to find out information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election? Please select all that apply. Base: All respondents (March 2008 = 1,088; May 2007= 1,094) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 80% 76% 70% 62% 60% 55% 50% 47% 42% 42% 40% 33% 29% 30% 25% 23% 23% 21% 21% 20% 12% 10% 0% TV Internet Newspaper Word-of-Mouth Radio News Magazines Too early, not looking for information Survey conducted in March 2008 Survey conducted in May 2007© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 4
  • 5. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008TYPES OF WEB SITES VISITED Overall, potential voters continue to visit the same types of Web sites for election-related research today as they did nine months ago. News sites like The New York Times and CNN are still most popular, attracting 86 percent of survey respondents. Online social media (blogs, social-networking sites, YouTube-like sites and Wikipedia-like sites) continue to play an influential role for 41 percent of potential voters. Use of candidate Web sites has also remained unchanged overall, at 31 percent. Interestingly, Republicans outpace Democrats in their use of news sites, while Democrats exhibit a greater use of candidate and social media sites than Republicans. TYPES OF WEB SITES VISITED TO FIND INFORMATION ABOUT ISSUES AND CANDIDATES, BY POLITICAL AFFILIATION You indicated that you use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election. Which, if any, of the following types of sites do you typically visit for information about issues and candidates? Please select all that apply. Base: Respondents who use the Internet to find information about candidates and issues in the 2008 presidential election (Dn=238; Rn=159; In=106) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 100% 90% 92% 81% 80% 60% 46% 40% 38% 40% 32% 27% 24% 20% 0% News Sites Social Media Sites (net)* Candidate Web Sites *Includes blogs, social networking sites, Democrat Republican Independent YouTube-like sites and Wikipedia-like site© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 5
  • 6. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008USE OF SEARCH Search engine use among those who use the Internet to find information about candidates and issues has decreased slightly to 88 percent since the original How America Searches: Election ‘08 report was published. Updated survey results indicate this decrease is a function of people needing search less – as opposed to any dissatisfaction with search; potential voters increasingly know what they want (47% vs. 34%), or already have a trusted source that they turn to regularly. Survey respondents who identify themselves as either Democrats or Independents place more trust in election-related search results than those who state they are Republicans. USE OF SEARCH ENGINES TO FIND INFORMATION ONLINE ABOUT ISSUES AND CANDIDATES You indicated that you use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election. Do you use search engines (e.g. Google, Yahoo!, etc.) to conduct research online about issues and candidates? Base: Respondents who use the Internet to find information about candidates and issues in the 2008 presidential election (n=549) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 12% 46% 42% Use search engines to conduct online research about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election Use search engines but NOT to conduct online research about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election Do not use search engines at all© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 6
  • 7. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 REASONS FOR NOT USING SEARCH ENGINES TO FIND INFORMATION ON ISSUES AND CANDIDATES, 2008 VS. 2007 You indicated that you do NOT use search engines (e.g. Google, Yahoo!, etc.) to conduct research about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential campaign. Which of the following statements describe your reasons for NOT using search engines to find information on issues and candidates? Pease select all that apply. Base: Use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election but do not use search engines to conduct this research (n=255) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 50% 47% 45% 41% 40% 36% 35% 34% 30% 25% 22% 20% 19% 16% 15% 14% 11% 10% 5% 5% 5% 4% 0% Already knew Already have a Not interested in Don’t trust the Previous search Some other reason what I wanted trusted source for learning more about search results results have not information issues and candidates been relevant Survey conducted in March 2008 Survey conducted in May 2007 Among those using search engines to find election information online, a notable increase in visits to candidate Web sites is taking place. Whereas potential voters’ propensity to visit such sites has stayed near-constant overall, searchers’ use of candidate sites has jumped dramatically to 50 percent. Additionally, survey respondents who use search engines are more likely to visit social media sites than survey respondents overall (57% vs. 41%).© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 7
  • 8. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 TYPES OF WEB SITES VISITED TO FIND INFORMATION ABOUT ISSUES AND CANDIDATES, TOTAL VS. SEARCHERS You indicated that you use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election. Which, if any, of the following types of sites do you typically visit for information about issues and candidates? Please select all that apply. Base: Respondents who use the Internet to find information about candidates and issues in the 2008 presidential election (n=549) and respondents who use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election and use search engines to conduct this research (n=229) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% News Sites (e.g. 86% CNN, New York Times, ABC/CBS/NBC etc.) 86% 41% Social Media Sites (net)* 57% 31% Candidate Sites 50% 8% Other 7% *Includes Blogs, Social Networking Sites, YouTube-like Sites and Wikipedia-like Sites Total Those using search engines to conduct research about issues and candidates in 2008 election© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 8
  • 9. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008TOP ELECTION ISSUES Survey respondents’ top election concerns (as indicated by issues searched) have shifted significantly during the past nine months. The economy has grown in importance by 29 percent, global warming has shifted in the opposite direction by the same amount (-29%), and searches related to the war on terror have decreased by 25 percent. Healthcare and the economy now tie for the number one issue in importance to potential voters, having overtaken the previous leading topic of war in Iraq. When analyzing election issue searches by respondents’ political affiliation, health care is the most popular topic for Democrats with 55 percent of searches. The economy and immigration are tied at number one for Republicans, each capturing a 58 percent share of search. The war in Iraq remains the top issue for Independents, with 57 percent of search volume. Men’s and women’s focus on election issues differs in five key areas; health care, economy, war in Iraq, jobs, and war on terror. TOP 10 ISSUES SEARCHED FOR IN 2008 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION You mentioned that you use search engines (e.g. Google, Yahoo!, etc.) to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election. Which, if any, of the following issues have you searched for? Please select all that apply. Base: Respondents who use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election and use search engines to conduct this research (n=229) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 60% 52% 50% 49% 49% 48% 46% 48% 44% 40% 40% 38% 39% 38% 37% 38% 37% 35% 35% 36% 30% 30% 30% 28% 20% 10% 0% Health Care Economy War in Iraq Gas Prices Immigration Social Jobs Education War on Environment Security Terror Survey conducted in March 2008 Survey conducted in May 2007© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 9
  • 10. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 TOP 10 ISSUES SEARCHED FOR IN 2008 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, BY GENDER You mentioned that you use search engines (e.g. Google, Yahoo!, etc.) to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election. Which, if any, of the following issues have you searched for? Please select all that apply. Base: Respondents who use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election and use search engines to conduct this research (n=229) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 60% 56% 56% 54% 50% 45% 43% 44% 41% 41% 40% 40% 40% 38% 36% 36% 36% 34% 33% 33% 30% 29% 27% 23% 20% 10% 0% Health Care Economy War in Iraq Gas Prices Immigration Social Jobs Education War on Environment Security Terror Male Female© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 10
  • 11. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008CANDIDATE INTEREST Survey responses indicate Barack Obama leads all candidate searches and Hillary Clinton is the second- most searched on candidate (capturing 71 percent and 62 percent share of search, respectively). John McCain leads Republican candidate searches with 46 percent penetration to Ron Paul’s 17 percent. Eight percent of Internet searches on 2008 election candidates are for Ralph Nader. Interestingly, survey respondents who identify themselves as Independents conduct nearly 50 percent more searches on Democrat candidates than they do on Republican candidates. CANDIDATES SEARCHED FOR IN 2008 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, BY POLITICAL AFFILIATION You mentioned that you use search engines (e.g. Google, Yahoo!, etc.) to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election. Which, if any, of the following declared and potential candidates have you searched for? Please select all that apply. Base: Respondents who use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election and use search engines to conduct this research (n=229) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 71% 81% Barack Obama 57% 73% 62% 69% Hillary Clinton 57% 53% 46% 29% John McCain 81% 47% 17% Ron Paul 10% 28% 14% 8% 6% Ralph Nader 10% 5% Total Democrat Republican Independent© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 11
  • 12. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 Even when searching on presidential candidate names, potential voters are still focused on election issues; trying to find more information about a candidate’s position on a specific issue remains the leading reason survey respondents conduct candidate searches (85%). Since the original How America Searches: Election ‘08 report was published, men’s interest in candidates’ religious beliefs has grown almost 50 percent, while women’s interest in candidates’ personal history and family has increased by 27 percent. REASONS FOR CONDUCTING SEARCHES FOR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES IN 2008 ELECTION, BY GENDER For what reasons do you conduct searches for presidential candidates for the 2008 election? Please select all that apply. Base: Respondents who use the Internet to find information about issues and candidates in the 2008 presidential election and use search engines to conduct this research (n=229) Source: iCrossing, March 2008 100% 90% 85% 89% 82% 80% 70% 60% 51% 50% 48% 49% 47% 44% 40% 36% 37% 33% 30% 29% 20% 10% 0% Find more information Learn more about Find out about Learn about their about their position their personal their voting history religious beliefs on a specific issue history and family and affiliation Total Male Female© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 12
  • 13. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 According to Microsoft’s Live.com network, candidate-related keyword search volume has increased recently and Barack Obama is generating the most search activity. Obama again displayed the largest search spike among presidential candidates, with estimated volume in February 2008 that was roughly six times Obama’s original spike in October 2006. This contrast in search volume illustrates a large increase in people searching online for information about presidential candidates. Notably, Obama and Clinton have both surpassed McCain in estimated search volume, every month since November 2006. TOP ESTIMATED MONTHLY SEARCH VOLUMES FOR CANDIDATES IN 2008 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, JUNE 2007 − FEBRUARY 2008 Source: Microsoft AdLabs Research Center KSP 700,000 600,000 Barack Obama 500,000 Hillary Clinton 400,000 John McCain 300,000 Ralph Nader Ron Paul 200,000 100,000 0 Jun-07 Jul-07 Aug-07 Sep-07 Oct-07 Nov-07 Dec-07 Jan-08 Feb-08© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 13
  • 14. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008CANDIDATE-RELATED Just as important as how many candidate searches are being conducted online, is what individuals are finding when they do seek information. For candidate-related keywords, all candidates show excellentKEYWORD SEARCH RESULTS position in natural search results and in most instances are included in first-page rankings for their own names. Barack Obama is the only candidate showing in natural search results for a competitor’s keyword (Obama ranked 23rd on Ask.com for the keyword mccain). Analysis of the paid search competitive landscape during the last two weeks of March indicates spending on candidate-related keywords has increased. John McCain continues to lead the candidates with an estimated 2.4 times the spend of Barack Obama, and four times that of Hillary Clinton. McCain is also the only candidate with paid coverage on competitors’ names in addition to his own, including candidate keywords hillary clinton, barack obama, obama, and clinton. Both Ron Paul’s and Ralph Nader’s paid search spend amounts appear to be negligible. BREAKDOWN OF ESTIMATED CANDIDATE-RELATED KEYWORD PAID SEARCH SPEND Source: iCrossing, March 2008 Hillary Clinton 15% Barack Obama 25% John McCain 60%© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 14
  • 15. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008ISSUES-RELATED KEYWORD Issues-related search results tell a different story; Barack Obama dominates natural search visibility for issues-related keywords, with 60% share of market followed by Ron Paul (36%), Hillary Clinton (3%),SEARCH RESULTS and John McCain (1%). Obama’s success is driven by high natural search position on high-volume keywords. Obama has natural visibility on immigration, healthcare, economy and energy. Clinton has natural visibility for war in iraq, veterans, family medical leave act, dnc, and middle class. McCain has natural visibility for veterans, national security, second amendment, government spending, and border security. Ron Paul has high natural search results position for social security, healthcare, and racism. POLITICAL ISSUES SHARE OF NATURAL SEARCH VISIBILITY, BY CANDIDATE Source: iCrossing, March 2008 John McCain Hillary Clinton 1% 3% Ron Paul 36% Barack Obama 60%© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 15
  • 16. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 For the issues-related keywords, of the presidential candidates only John McCain and Barack Obama seem to be spending on paid search. Paid search estimates show that McCain and Obama are spending much less on issues-related keywords than they are on candidate-related keywords, approximately one percent, and that McCain is spending more than twice as much as Obama. Barack Obama’s spend seems to be focused on two keywords: democratic party and democratic nomination. McCain appears to be spending on 16 issues-related keywords, with the most coverage on republican nomination and special interests and highest spend on pro-life and abortion. Clinton does not appear to have a presence for issues-related paid search results. BREAKDOWN OF ESTIMATED ISSUES-RELATED KEYWORD PAID SEARCH SPEND, BY CANDIDATE Source: iCrossing, March 2008 Barack Obama 30% John McCain 70%© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 16
  • 17. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 CANDIDATE PAID SEARCH CAMPAIGNS BY ISSUES-RELATED KEYWORD McCain Clinton Obama Keywords found from the Issues KW List 07.07 03.08 07.07 03.08 07.07 03.08 Abortion X Bipartisan X Border Security X Campaign Finance X Campaign Finance X Campaign Reform X Campaign Spending X Democratic Nomination X Democratic Party X DNC X Electoral Reform X X Ethics Reform X Government Accountability X Government Reform X Government Spending X Greenhouse Gases X Iraq X Lobbyist X Pro Life X X Republican Nomination X RNC X Special Interests X X Stem Cell Research X Terrorism X Tort Reform X Unemployment Rate X Universal Healthcare X War in Iraq X Candidates’ Web sites are now ranking higher for issues-related keywords in natural search than at the time of the original How America Searches: Election ‘08 report - but news sites continue to dominate. The top most visible Web sites for issues-related keywords include Wikipedia, the Washington Post, MSNBC and CNN. Obama’s senate and campaign URLs are now showing in 56th and 91st position respectively, and Clinton now makes her first appearance in the 114th position. Thus, candidate Web sites have become more visible, but news sites and information aggregators continue to show better position for issues-related keywords.© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 17
  • 18. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 TOP 100 MOST VISIBLE WEB SITES FOR ISSUES-RELATED KEYWORDS, MARCH 2008 EXECUTIVE KAR SUMMARY TOTAL RANKINGS GOOGLE* YAHOO! AOL** MSN Average Number of Rankings Found for Top 10 Domains 190 41 45 36 44 Average Number of Rankings Found for Top 25 Domains 103 23 24 20 22 Average Number of Rankings Found for Top 100 Domains 43 9 10 9 8 DOMAINS TOTAL RANKINGS GOOGLE* YAHOO! AOL** MSN en.wikipedia.org 1,162 248 294 220 309 www.washingtonpost.com 140 38 33 35 3 www.cnn.com 124 28 35 21 10 www.whitehouse.gov 114 28 23 24 11 www.msnbc.msn.com 87 17 18 14 32 dictionary.reference.com 60 2 2 1 54 www.pbs.org 56 8 21 8 4 www.infoplease.com 56 12 7 11 10 news.bbc.co.uk 52 17 10 14 1 www.npr.org 52 14 11 15 9 www.state.gov 52 9 15 7 6 www.democrats.org 46 11 9 11 5 www.nytimes.com 46 12 10 11 NR www.dol.gov 44 8 7 7 9 www.cato.org 43 6 15 6 2 www.law.cornell.edu 41 16 7 13 3 www.amazon.com 40 8 14 6 11 www.aclu.org 38 10 8 9 6 dir.yahoo.com 38 13 10 15 NR www.religioustolerance.org 38 10 8 10 4 www.globalissues.org 37 8 9 9 7 www.eia.doe.gov 37 9 9 9 4 www.un.org 36 6 6 6 5 money.cnn.com 36 10 14 10 1 www.youtube.com 36 16 11 6 3 www.usatoday.com 35 11 8 10 NR www.house.gov 35 8 7 6 5 www.sourcewatch.org 34 11 11 8 2 www.census.gov 33 7 9 7 5 www.foxnews.com 32 7 5 7 8 www.csmonitor.com 32 12 2 10 2 www.irs.gov 31 7 6 7 9 www.heritage.org 31 6 8 7 3 www.boston.com 30 4 14 3 1 www.cms.hhs.gov 29 5 6 5 5 www.wto.org 29 6 7 NR 6 topics.nytimes.com 29 7 13 6 NR www.bls.gov 28 6 5 6 3 www.cia.gov 27 8 5 7 NR www.nlm.nih.gov 27 6 5 5 3 www.ed.gov 25 5 4 5 4 plato.stanford.edu 24 6 8 5 2 www.forbes.com 24 6 3 7 5 www.fbi.gov 23 4 9 3 2 www.ontheissues.org 23 5 6 5 4 www.hrw.org 23 8 5 8 2 www.fueleconomy.gov 23 5 5 5 4 www.epa.gov 22 6 4 6 2 johnedwards.com 22 7 8 7 NR www.hhs.gov 21 5 3 5 6 www.commoncause.org 20 3 9 3 3© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 18
  • 19. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 DOMAINS TOTAL RANKINGS GOOGLE* YAHOO! AOL** MSN www.hud.gov 20 6 2 6 2 www.rnc.org 20 3 4 3 5 lcweb2.loc.gov 20 6 2 6 1 www.time.com 19 7 NR 7 1 obama.senate.gov 19 1 7 NR 2 www.geocities.com 19 5 NR 4 1 www.gatt.org 18 3 5 NR 2 www.imdb.com 18 5 1 4 6 www.cbsnews.com 18 3 6 3 5 www.google.com 18 15 1 NR 2 travel.state.gov 17 2 5 2 4 www.publicagenda.org 16 5 4 5 1 www.energy.gov 16 2 3 2 6 www.cdc.gov 16 2 4 2 1 www.merriam-webster.com 16 5 7 3 1 www.ssa.gov 16 4 3 4 1 www.opensecrets.org 16 4 2 4 3 www.issues2000.org 16 1 6 NR NR www.gao.gov 16 2 3 4 3 www.bankrate.com 16 3 5 3 3 abcnews.go.com 16 2 6 2 4 www.unep.org 16 5 2 5 1 www.legalethicsandreform.com 16 NR NR NR NR www.fema.gov 16 3 3 3 3 www.federalreserve.gov 15 3 2 3 1 www.nea.org 15 3 3 2 2 www.webmd.com 15 2 2 2 NR www.pollingreport.com 15 5 4 5 1 www.talkorigins.org 15 2 3 3 1 www.medicalnewstoday.com 15 1 NR 2 NR www.microsoft.com 15 4 3 4 3 www.citizen.org 15 4 5 3 1 www.fas.org 14 3 4 3 1 www.iht.com 14 1 NR 1 1 www.anwr.org 14 3 3 3 2 www.latimes.com 14 5 3 5 1 www.dhs.gov 14 2 4 2 3 dir.salon.com 14 NR 12 NR 2 www.ers.usda.gov 14 4 3 4 1 www.barackobama.com 14 5 4 5 NR www.epi.org 14 5 5 4 NR www.nasa.gov 14 2 5 2 1 www.bidstrup.com 13 5 NR 4 1 www.usdoj.gov 13 4 NR 3 2 Executed on March 25, 2008 www.answers.com 13 NR 8 NR 4 Results represent first page rankings www.britannica.com 13 3 6 2 2 for 225 non-branded keywords www.medicare.gov 13 2 2 2 2 * Results provided by third party engine ** Contains results from Google www.lp.org 13 2 3 2 2 NR - Not Ranked on the first page www.lib.utexas.edu 13 2 2 2 1© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 19
  • 20. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008PENNSYLVANIA DEMOCRATIC Barack Obama has been generating noticeably higher search volume than Hillary Clinton in Pennsylvania over the last 30 days, according to data pulled from Google Trends on April 10. Going into the April 22PRIMARY Democratic Primary, the two candidates have been trending similarly with a downturn in overall volume during the past week. The term obama is searched more often than barack obama and the decrease in search volume for obama appears to be more considerable than the decrease in search volume for clinton, which has higher volume than hillary clinton. This suggests that the gap in search volume between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton may be narrowing, and overall candidate search volume may be decreasing going into the Primary.© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 20
  • 21. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008CONCLUSIONS As the 2008 presidential election draws nearer, more Americans are looking for related candidate and issues information (88%) – and the Internet is increasingly shaping their opinions and preferences (31% growth). Notably, men and women now rely equally upon the Internet for election-related information, whereas previously men conducted online research at much higher rates. Overall, little has changed with regard to the Web sites potential voters visit (news sites followed by social media sites and then candidate Web sites); but behavior does differ across political party lines, as well as between searchers and non-searchers. Americans’ top election concerns keep shifting and potential voters use search engines to discover a candidate’s position on a specific issue – but candidates continue to miss the mark on issues-related keyword search results: News sites and information aggregators continue to lead in position for issues- related keywords on natural search, and the candidates do not appear to be shifting paid search budget away from candidate-related keywords to issues-related keywords in order to improve campaign effectiveness. Where candidate-related keywords are concerned, all candidates show excellent position in natural search results and McCain continues to outspend his opponents in estimated paid search. Obama leads online candidate searches overall by a wide margin, and also leads Clinton in Pennsylvania searches conducted in the run-up to that state’s Democratic Primary.© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 21
  • 22. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008ENDNOTES METHODOLOGY Survey This report presents the findings of a survey conducted by Opinion Research Corporation among a sample of 1,088 adults comprising 520 men and 568 women 18 years of age and older. The online omnibus study is conducted twice a week among a U.S. sample of 1,000 adults 18 years of age and older using the Greenfield Online panel. Interviewing for this survey was completed on March 21, 2008. Completed interviews were weighted by four variables: age, sex, geographic region and race, to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the total U.S. population 18 years of age and older. The raw data were weighted by a custom designed program that automatically develops a weighting factor for each respondent. Each respondent was assigned a single weight derived from the relationship between the actual proportion of the population based on U.S. Census data with its specific combination of age, sex, geographic characteristics and race and the proportion in the sample. Tabular results show both weighted and unweighted bases. Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have volunteered to participate in online surveys and polls. The data have been weighted to reflect the demographic composition of the population 18 years of age and older. Because the sample is based on those who initially self-selected for participation, no estimates of sampling error can be calculated. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to multiple sources of error, including, but not limited to sampling error, coverage error, error associated with non-response, error associated with question wording and response options, and post- survey weighting and adjustments. Natural Search Visibility The methodology employed in this report to determine natural search visibility share of market is based on iCrossing’s unique tool - Industry Index - which combines iCrossing’s Position Analysis Report (PAR) and Keyword Analysis Report (KAR). The main purpose of using this tool is to demonstrate the natural search visibility of the five remaining potential presidential candidates for the 2008 election, and compare them on the basis of natural search visibility. An appendix with a full list of keywords, candidates, and URLs considered follows below. For this report, iCrossing analyzes search engine position data from the following U.S. search engines: Google, Yahoo!, MSN, Ask and AOL. Search Volume Data Search volume data was obtained through Microsoft AdLabs Research Center’s Keyword Services Platform. Paid Search Spend Another iCrossing proprietary tool – Ad Spend Estimator – is used in this report to assess each candidate’s paid search spend on both candidate-related keywords and issue-related keywords. The analysis behind iCrossing’s Ad Spend Estimator aggregates data from several industry sources to provide an estimate of paid search spend share of market among the candidates. This recently updated tool includes AdGooroo and AdWords data regarding number of keywords targeted, average spend per keyword, keyword coverage, average ranking, cost per click, and search volume to estimate paid spend among candidates. Paid search data was collected from March 14 to March 31, 2008. Google Trends Using the Google Trends tool, iCrossing takes a closer look at Google Trends data for the upcoming April 22 Democratic primary in Pennsylvania. Providing data since 2004, Google Trends shows relative search volume of one or many terms by region and varying time frame. In this case, it is used to view the trends in search volume for hillary clinton, clinton, barack obama, and obama during the last 30 days for the Pennsylvania region, with data pulled on April 10, 2008.© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 22
  • 23. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 CITATION POLICY The content and statistics contained in the body of this report may be used in publications and presentations provided there is attribution to: “iCrossing, a digital marketing company.” CONTACT For more information on this report, please contact us at howamericasearches@icrossing.com. For information regarding our market research or analytics services, please call 1.866.620.3780 or contact us at findus@icrossing.com. ABOUT ICROSSING iCrossing is a global digital marketing company that combines talent and technology to help world-class brands find and connect with their customers. The company blends best-in-class digital marketing services – including paid and natural search marketing, Web development, social media, research and analytics – to create integrated digital marketing programs that engage consumers and drive ROI. iCrossing’s client base includes such recognized brands as Epson America, Toyota, Travelocity and 40 Fortune 500 companies, including The Coca-Cola Company and Office Depot. Headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, the company has 620 employees in 15 offices in the U.S. and Europe. ABOUT OPINION RESEARCH CORPORATION Opinion Research Corporation, founded in 1938, is a research and consulting firm that helps organizations worldwide – in both private and public sectors – make a definitive difference in their performance. By providing objective, fact-based decision support and implementation, grounded in rigorous research, we earn our clients’ confidence with our fresh ideas and perspective. More information about Opinion Research Corporation may be obtained at www.opinionresearch.com.© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 23
  • 24. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008APPENDIX Appendix A: Issues Keyword Phrases Considered (228) ....................................................................... 25 Appendix B: Candidate Keyword Phrases Considered (12) .................................................................. 27 Appendix C: Candidate URLs Considered (18) ...................................................................................... 27© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 24
  • 25. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008APPENDIX A ISSUES KEYWORD PHRASES CONSIDERED (228) 911 defense gay rights abortion democratic party global warming abu ghraib democratic nomination globalization activist judges democratic national convention government accountability affirmative action diplomacy government reform afghanistan disabled rights government spending agriculture dnc greenhouse gases airport security drilling Alaska green party aids drug war guantanamo alternative energy drugs gun control al-qaeda economic stimulus healthcare anwr drilling economy health care armed forces personnel education health effects of 9/11 balkans ethics reform homeland security bipartisan electoral reform housing border fence election reform human rights in china border security energy illegal immigrants budget economy energy independence immigration campaign finance energy oil immunity campaign issues environment infrastructure technology campaign spending ethics interest rates campaign reform ethics reform internet childrens health insurance evolution internet neutrality china faa iran christian faith based initiatives iran sanctions christian fundamentalists faith based organizations iraq christian right families children iraq war citizenship path family medical leave act iraq withdrawal civil liberties family values israel palestine civil rights farm policy jobs civil unions fbi judicial branch civil war fema juvenile justice climate change flat tax kickbacks conservative foreclosures kosovo constitution party foreign aid kyoto constitutional rights foreign policy kyoto treaty copyright foreign trade labor corporate welfare free trade leadership creationism fuel costs liberal crime fundamentalism libertarian party cuba gas prices lobby darfur gatt lobbying reform death penalty gay marriage lobbyist© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 25
  • 26. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008 medicaid rural america wto gatt medicare russia weapons ban middle class sales tax welfare middle east same sex constitutional ban wiretapping mideast same sex marriage womens rights military complex school prayer worker rights minimum wage increase sdi missile defense working americans monetary policy second amendment wto mortgages security wto gatt nafta seniors nato senior health care nasa social conservative national debt social security national security sovereignty no child left behind special interests north korea stem cell research nuclear energy supreme court nuclear weapons tax oil subsidies tax incentives outsourcing tax rebate partisan tax reform passports taxes patient rights terrorism patriot act the pledge of allegiance peace three strikes pork barrel tobacco poverty tort reform principles values torture privacy trade balance privatization un pro-life unemployment rate racism unions recession united nations recruiting universal health care reform party universal healthcare religion urban issues renewable energy values republican party veterans republican national convention veto republican nomination vouchers responsible spending war in Iraq rnc war on terror roe v. wade war peace rollbacks weak dollar© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 26
  • 27. HOW AMERICA SEARCHES: ELECTION ‘08 UPDATE APRIL 2008APPENDIX B CANDIDATE KEYWORDS PHRASES CONSIDERED (12) KEYWORD barack obama barack obama hillary clinton hillary clinton john mccain john mccain ralph nader ralph naderAPPENDIX C CANDIDATE URLS CONSIDERED (18) CANDIDATE WEBSITE(S) John McCain www.johnmccain.com mccain.senate.gov www.exploremccain.com www.myspace.com/johnmccain www.facebook.com/johnmccain Hillary Clinton www.hillaryclinton.com clinton.senate.gov www.myspace.com/hillaryclinton www.facebook.com/hillaryclinton Barack Obama www.barackobama.com obama.senate.gov www.myspace.com/barackobama www.facebook.com/barackobama Ralph Nader www.nader.org www.votenader.org Ron Paul www.ronpaul2008.com www.myspace.com/ronpaul2008 www.facebook.com/ronpaul© COPYRIGHT 2008. ICROSSING, INC. | WWW.ICROSSING.COM 27

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