While talk about Mitt Romney and the presidential race continues to increase, the Republican nominee saw no significant post-GOP convention bump in positive talk about him, according to this week’s Conversation Nation poll.
The findings mirror the results of Gallup and CNN polls released on Tuesday that found little or no increase in support for Romney among likely voters in the wake of the Republican National Convention.
An ABC News/Washington Post poll, however, found a different result: It said that Obama's popularity has dipped since the spring, while Romney gained 5 percentage points in favorability from the previous week.
According to Conversation Nation, talk about Romney hit its highest point of the campaign on Friday, Aug. 31, the day after he accepted his party’s nomination, when 43 percent of Americans engaged in conversations about the Republican challenger.
But unplanned distractions might have hampered the efficacy of the GOP's messaging. Hurricane Isaac, a widely panned keynote address by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and Clint Eastwood’s surreal interrogation of a chair all provided topics of conversation that were off the GOP script.
Positive word of mouth about Romney increased only 3 points, to 35 percent, while negative word of mouth was up 2 points, to 38 percent of Americans.
Meanwhile, despite the pounding President Obama took from convention speakers, positive word of mouth about him increased 3 points to 40 percent and negative word of mouth fell a point to 38 percent, reversing a trend in which more Americans had been speaking negatively of Obama than had been speaking positively.
For both candidates, television continues to drive more word of mouth than any other medium, with 44 percent of Romney word of mouth and 38 percent of talk about Obama prompted by television. News programs, especially for Romney, were the most important word-of-mouth drivers on television.
At the halfway mark of convention season, the national elections continue to become an ever-hotter topic of conversation, with almost a third of Americans talking about them on Aug. 31, the highest level of the campaign. In late June, about 11 percent of Americans were talking about the elections.
It seems advertisers have picked up on the increasing resonance of the elections, with Tostitos recently joining Maker’s Mark in the arena of election-themed ad campaigns.
National Journal and Keller Fay Group, a survey research firm, have partnered to track Americans’ online and face-to-face conversations about the 2012 presidential race. Each week Keller Fay’s TalkTrack® research service interviews a nationally representative online sample of approximately 615 Americans ages 18-69, to determine which candidates and issues people are talking about and the nature of those conversations. Ed Keller and Brad Fay are coauthors of The Face-to-Face Book: Why Real Relationships Rule in a Digital Marketplace.