Obamacare overwhelmingly used negatively in online discussions, Affordable Care Act rarely referenced

Unfavorable sentiment shrouds “Obamacare”; 40 percent of online community discussions unfavorable when Obamacare mentioned

Jimmy Kimmel ACA v. ObamacareSince the Affordable Care Act was signed into law, the Administration and its allies have had trouble communicating the key selling points that resonate with people across the country, and even worse, overcoming the negatively coined term “Obamacare.” It is no mystery that when sold in a piecemeal fashion, provisions of the law, such as, young adults can stay on their parent’s health insurance until the age of 26 and people with pre-existing conditions can no longer be denied coverage, the public responds favorably.

TogoRun DC has been keeping a close eye on the communication strategy, sentiment and volume to see if the knowledge gap can be closed, and if the administration can effectively communicate their objective—that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. This week’s HIX Social Pulse takes a closer look at the numbers.

When asked about the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, many believe they are two separate laws. The misinformation is so rampant that even late night comedians, like Jimmy Kimmel, have found fodder among the confused.

Key Takeaways:

  • Opponents defined it first: when Obamacare is used in discussion, of the 375,473 conversations that can be ascribed sentiment, the law is referred to negatively by a count of 70,682 (20%)
  • Overall discussions dropped to 579,000 mentions across all online communities during week 2 of implementation, down from 651,000 during week 1
  • Over the course of the past week, state-based exchanges on social media have increased their followers/likes by 9.27%. By comparison, navigator groups in states that are relying on the federal exchange have increased their following by only 1.75%.

While the law was being drafted, detractors negatively coined the law, or ACA, “Obamacare.” Since then, proponents have attempted to take back the term and own it in a positive light; hence President Obama coming out and publicly endorsing the name. According to our analysis, there is still an overwhelming amount of unfavorable sentiment when the term  is applied in online conversation. TogoTuesday WK2 Graph 1


TogoTuesday WK2 Graph 2TogoTuesday WK2 Graph 3TogoTuesday WK2 Graph 4

Oct 8 – Oct 15, 2013 (Week 2)

The following anaylsis contextualizes the online discussion on blogs, mainstream media, Facebook and micro-media, or Twitter, relating to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act for the period of October 8 through October 15th.

Volume:
TogoRun analyzed the number of discussions pertaining to ACA and Obamacare from 10/8 to 10/15, and determined that there were over  579,000 mentions across all online communities, down from 651,000 mentions during the first week of exchange implementation. As expected, Twitter, the micro-media platform, carries the majority of all online discussions with over 51.2%, or 297,436 total mentions, with Facebook at 25.2% or (n: 146,193*), news groups at 9.9% (n: 57,471), forums at 7.8% (n: 45,430) and blogs at 5.4% (n: 31,792) trailing far behind.

Overall discussion highlights

The graphs below depict the overall conversation by major online communities such as Facebook, twitter, blogs, digital news media and forums. The colors illustrate the specific community groups.

Trailing off over the course of the past week, daily discussion volumes have declined to approximately 90,000 mentions with sentiment holding true to the ebb and flow of the overall volume of discussion. TogoTuesday WK2 Graph 5

TogoTuesday WK2 Graph 6TogoTuesday WK2 Graph 7

 

 

 

 

Social Media Follower Race
As part of our methodology, we manually calculated all state health exchanges social media follower counts. In a social media spectrum, follower counts help distribute messages at a low cost and enhance a social media campaign’s engagement ratio. In states that are not running their own exchange, we have derived calculations from top navigator grant recipients, or other prominent groups working to educate the public about health care reform and exchanges.

Across the 47 states that have a social media presence, the total follower count as of the end of the day October 14 tops out at 186,666  followers/likes, with a median of 1,133.

Over the course of the past week, state-based exchanges on social media have increased their followers/likes by 9.27%. By comparison, navigator groups in states that are relying on the federal exchange have increased their following by only 1.75%.

Social Media Follower Race

Methodology:
The above charts contextualize the online discussion on social media, blogs, mainstream media, and micro-media, or Twitter, relating to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance exchanges for the period of October 1 through October 8. All volume, dispersion and sentiment measurements were determined using data extracted from Sysomos unless otherwise noted.
Online volume is a measurement of the number of relevant discussions that took place in a given time period. A discussion is defined as one comment or mention posted online. Tracking volume allows us to identify which platforms people are using to discuss ACA and/or Obamacare, and which have little permeation.
Dispersion refers to both the number of individual online communities hosting relevant conversation and the number of categories, or “demographics”. Online, people tend to congregate in communities where they share common interests or passions with other community members – such as health, wellness, finance and general interest sites. In other cases, people will gather within sites designed specifically to cater to the needs of a certain population (demographic/psychographic) segment – such as local communities. TogoRun defines these categories as “demographics” or “communities”.
Query terms used for social monitoring: “Health Insurance Exchange” OR “Health insurance marketplace” OR ACA OR “Affordable Care Act” OR HIE OR HIX OR medicaid OR medicare OR obamacare OR PPACA OR “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act”