Rating of Media Activity of Parties

March 3, 2023

Campaigning for the Mazhilis elections is in full swing and has been going on for a whole week. Various Telegram channels periodically post media ratings of varying degrees of quality and relevance. Therefore we decided to develop a formalized measurement methodology and conduct an analysis of the media activity of the parties during the first week of the campaign.

A small spoiler - the leader in terms of aggregate indicators is known in advance, but at the same time some very curious results were obtained.

How did we measure media activity?

First, let us define the object of the study. There are 7 parties in total, whose activity will be measured:
- The AMANAT Party (hereafter referred to as Amanat)
- The People's Democratic Patriotic Party Auyl (hereinafter - Auyl)
- Aq Jol Democratic Party of Kazakhstan (hereinafter - Aq Jol)
- People's Party of Kazakhstan (hereinafter - PPK)
- Green Party of Kazakhstan Baitak (hereinafter - Baitak)
- RESPUBLICA party (hereinafter - Respublica)
- National Social Democratic Party (hereinafter - NSDP)

For convenience, we will use abbreviated names.
There are many different metrics for measuring the media potential of a brand, both cumulatively and at individual sites. For example, the international brand agency Sotrender developed the Twitter Activity Index, which evaluates the influence of the posts: from an administrator's tweet (8 points) to a mention (2 points).

To analyze the media presence of the parties it was decided to take two different indicators to avoid a one-sided evaluation:
- mentionability of parties in the information field based on the results of the analysis of special services;
The level of media presence is the main statistical indicator of effectiveness in the information field. In the era of social networks and mobile messengers it is difficult to talk about the real existence of a party if it appears only in the election period, the rest of the time not demonstrating itself in any way.
- A combination of activity indicators on official party accounts.
The party's own activity in the media field is the main source of information and a means of forming the primary perception without outside interpretations. This allows you to manage the information agenda and minimize media risks.

The accounts of party leaders and popular media personalities are not taken into account:
- First, their contributions are accounted for in the first block;
- Second, the party is an independent organization with its own brand, which should not depend on the current leadership.
For simplicity, the distribution of places is conducted according to the amount of penalty points accrued for each indicator - the fewer the points, the higher the final place in the rating.
Weighting coefficients: the level of mediaosti (the number of references) - 70%, own activity - 30%.
Total place = 0.7*(place for index 1) + 0.3*(place for index 2)
The first indicator is a popular system youscan.io. The service takes into account multiple mentions on websites, social networks (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Twitter, VK) and mobile messenger Telegram. Variations of the names of parties are taken as keywords.
For the second one, the representation on the main platforms in Kaznet (Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Telegram, TikTok, Twitter), the number of subscribers (audience) and activity (number of published materials) on official accounts are taken into account.

To evaluate the reaction of the audience to the media activity of the parties, the service popsters.ru was used. It counts the number of views, likes and comments. Due to technical peculiarities only Youtube accounts were taken for analysis. On the other platforms not all parties are represented or the types of accounts are different (Facebook - page or account, Instagram - business account or personal account, etc.), which complicates automated data processing.

The days from February 18 to 24 were taken as the reporting period.
Rating of mentioning parties in the information field
According to Youscan data, 92,283 mentions of all the parties were recorded during the reporting period. The vast majority of them were on social networks (93.8%), media (3.5%) and the mobile messenger Telegram (2.7%).
The first place, as expected, went to Amanat. The parliamentary colleagues Aq Jol and PPK were far behind. Next come the old-timers of the political scene - Auyl and PSDP. At the end of the rating are newcomers - Respublica and Baitak.

If we imagine the information field around political parties in the form of a pie, then almost three-quarters or 74% belonged to Amanat. The second place is confidently taken by Aq Jol with 11%. The other parties account for less than 15% of the total volume of mentions.

A detailed analysis for each parameter revealed a number of counter-intuitive results.

In the media, Amanat was most often mentioned as expected - 1,298 publications, Aq Jol came second - 488, Respublica came third - 346. The last place was taken by Auyl right after Baitak. In this case, the results were distributed relatively evenly - the first place exceeds the last by 5.3 times.
In the Telegram messenger the duo of leaders remained the same - on Amanat with 1,127 mentions and Aq Jol with 625 mentions. PSDP came in third place, which is somewhat surprising given its non-parliamentary status. The distribution in Telegram is not so even: Amanat is mentioned more often than Baitak by 13.7 times.

In social networks the first places were distributed according to the results of the last Mazhilis elections: Amanat, Aq Jol and PPK confidently took the leading positions. The last one was Baitak. At the same time the results were uneven - Amanat accounted for 76% of the total number of references, the first place exceeded the second by 7.2 times.

Respublica has surprised by taking the 5th place, exceeding Baitak, which has become the last one, only by 120 references, and fell behind Auyl, which took the 4th place, by 390 references.

The final results on block "Rating of mentioning" as a whole were expected and the parties occupied the following places (the occupied place on each position and the final result are indicated).

Activity on official accounts
For the sake of purity of the study it is worth mentioning that all the parties have their own website with an election program. Of all the parties only Amanat created a separate electoral resource amanat2023.kz.

Only Amanat and Respublica have working links to official accounts. The websites of PPK and Aq Jol have inoperable links to TikTok and Twitter, respectively. Auyl party has no link to the Telegram account (found by themselves). On the current site of Baitak there are no links to social networks at all (all accounts were found by themselves).

There is a mixed picture by the number of subscribers. The final first place is taken by Baitak - 461 thousand subscribers, followed by Amanat and Aq Jol - 343 thousand and 108 thousand subscribers, respectively. Respublica, which has big media potential due to its leaders, is in the last but one place - 15,500 subscribers. The last was Auyl.

The quality of Baitak's audience and accounts themselves raises some questions. For example, their Youtube channel was created in 2014, when the party did not yet exist (the channel is currently unavailable).

In terms of the intensity of work in social networks (the number of materials posted on official accounts) since the beginning of the campaign, Amanat leads with a large margin - 441 materials. Respublica comfortably took second place with 176 materials. Further PPK and Auyl were a dense group. Aq Jol", having the status of a "second force", closes the rating according to this indicator.

This criterion should be noted imbalances in the use of sites. Only Amanat actively uses all 6 platforms, the other parties emphasized 2-3 key resources.
To evaluate the quality of the work (audience reaction) the indicators on Youtube-channels were counted. Amanat was the leader in the number of views and comments, the leader in the number of likes was PPK. Aq Jol started posting propaganda videos only from 23 February - a total of 6 videos. PSDP limited themselves to the statement on participation in the elections - 1 video. Auyl and Respublica did not place materials at all in the initial period of campaign.

The final results for the block "Activity on official accounts" were generally expected, and the parties were placed as follows (the place occupied by each position and the final result).

*Bearing in mind the lack of links to official accounts, the inaccessibility of Youtube channel and questionable quality of the audience Baitak party is excluded from the rating.

The final rating on the sum of references and activity indicators (for 6 parties)
The results show that in information field Amanat is leading with a large margin, occupying the first place. Ak Zhol" and PNK were fighting for the second place.

Respublica with a small margin took 4th place, ahead of PSDP. Auyl has closed the rating, scoring 6.3 points.

Source: Matrix (matritca.kz)