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Conversation Nation: What America Is Really Saying About Campaign 2012

New Survey Feature from National Journal & Keller Fay Tracks Real-World Conversations About the Presidential Race

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 18, 2012 -- In a campaign world dominated by inside-the-Beltway chatter and tempest-in-a-teapot stories, National Journal and the Keller Fay Group are teaming up to track the real conversations about the presidential election happening across America.

Today marks the launch of "Conversation Nation: What America Is Really Saying About Campaign 2012," a weekly feature tracking Americans’ face-to-face and online conversations about the 2012 presidential race. Each week Keller Fay's ground-breaking TalkTrack® research service will survey a nationally representative sample of Americans about the presidential candidates they're discussing with friends, family, and neighbors - and whether those conversations are positive or negative.

Over the course of the election, National Journal will report exclusively every Wednesday on the latest Conversation Nation findings, compiling a unique picture of the way the campaign is playing out through the actual conversations Americans are having about the candidates and major issues. In fact, even as many other reports focus on digital engagement through online and social media, the first Conversation Nation data shows that 77% of the conversations Americans are having about the 2012 presidential campaign are occurring face-to-face, instead of online.

The first Conversation Nation report, released today, also shows that the barrage of attack ads traded by President Obama and Mitt Romney has influenced personal conversations about both candidates in recent weeks:

  • In early June, 44% of conversations about President Obama were positive and 36% were negative. By the start of this week, those figures had flipped, to 37% positive and 42% negative.
  • In early June, 36% of conversations about Mitt Romney were positive and 41% were negative. By the start of this week, both figures were down slightly, to 31% positive and 38% negative.
  • Overall, daily chatter about Romney spiked at the end of last week amid mounting attacks on his business record and demands that he release more tax returns. 
  • Despite a heavy focus on the election inside the Beltway, dieting, shopping, vacation, job security, and the costs of healthcare and gas were still more popular topics of discussion among Americans than the president and the election.

Read the full report and see the tracking graphics.

The Keller Fay Group is a pioneer in word-of-mouth market research, regularly monitoring both offline and online word of mouth about products, services, and brands. Combined with National Journal's political expertise, Conversation Nation will provide all-new insight into the high-impact - yet often hidden - face-to-face conversations that shape Americans' political decision-making.

About National Journal Group
National Journal is Washington’s premier source for 360-degree insight on politics and policy. With up-to-the-minute breaking news and analysis at, the essential congressional intelligence of National Journal Daily, the knowledge and depth of National Journal magazine, and the comprehensive campaign coverage of National Journal Hotline, National Journal delivers everything you need to know to stay ahead of the curve in Washington. Follow National Journal on Twitter (@nationaljournal) and Facebook (

About Keller Fay Group
The Keller Fay Group is the first full-service market research company focused exclusively on word of mouth (WOM) and brand advocacy. The firm's founders, Ed Keller and Brad Fay are authors of The Face-to-Face Book, "a celebration of the supremely social nature of all human beings and how that drives the consumer marketplace." Launched in the US in 2006 and the UK in 2011, Keller Fay's TalkTrack® program is the only continuous study of WOM in all channels (online and offline) designed to closely monitor and measure the marketing-relevant attributes of actual consumer conversations. For further information about the Keller Fay Group, visit our website: And, follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter (

About the Survey
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 aged 18 to 69, to determine which candidates and issues people are talking about and the nature of those conversations.



Media Contacts:
Taylor West
Communications Director
National Journal Group
twest [at]

Kristen Beveridge
Vice President
Keller Fay Group
kbeveridge [at]