French Presidential Elections

This week end is the first round of the French Presidential elections. Netvibes had a look at what kind of insights we could find.

Poll: Macron, Le Pen, Fillon and Melenchon

Latest publicly shared poll on vote intentions. Shows a clear 2 x 2. Macron & Le Pen and Fillon & Melenchon

Hashtags are telling a different story

And it’s an interesting topic to dig into as for both primaries we showed that hashtags were, in fact, announcing the winner. each time. So, let’s dig here.

Unsurprisingly, Media presence helps “small” candidates

  • April 4th was a public debate on French TV which benefited a lot to NDA and LePen
  • April 14th, NDA is on TF1 for his “job interview”
  • Fillon is always on top and very constant. Nothing seems to be affecting him. From an hashtag perspective.

Fillon always on top amongst hashtags

Hereafter, we list all Tweets (all from twitter), Retweets (tweets pushed by someone else), Original tweets (tweets written by its author) and Reply to (tweets to reply to its author)

Tweet counts: Fillon, Le Pen, Mélenchon, Macron

Tweet counts

Tweet shares amongst top 6 candidates

Regarding Reply-to, order is the same by Fillon increase his top position. Could be seen as a greater engagement with the candidate

Share amonst top 6 candidates

Can this be faked?

To find surprising activity, we look at the top10 Retweeters and then in the last column the average volume of tweets for the top10 RTers is compared with the total of Retweets

To be noticed:

  • Since 4/1, Macron and Fillon’s activities look regular and similar. Melenchon and Le Pen are a little bit higher. Clearly Hamon is using some RT strategy. NDA is suspicious.
  • Since Thursday, likely due to the Champs Elysees attack, all candidates are getting more RT

What is said about those candidates? Could it be lots of tweets but not related to candidacy? negative/counter popular?


People linked to Fillon since April 1st: Sarkozy’s endorsement, Hollande (to take his job :), Barbara Lefebvre (L’Emission Politique/France2)

Conversations are on RG (General Investigations), EU

55% positive (amongst non neutral)


People linked to Macron: Strong on Hollande (link/inspiration), then biggest opponent according to polls, then Fillon and PS leader

EU is top in the list, then RG as well and PS

56% positive (amongst non neutral) 1% higher than Fillon.

Le Pen

People linked to Le Pen: Melenchon (other extrem and often very vindicative), Annelle Muller (Vel d’hiv), Mandela (South African visit)

Surprisingly, EU is top of the list. FN #4.

59% positive (amongst non neutral). More than Fillon and Macron


People associated: Hamon (politically close), Le Pen (symetrical), Hollande (competition), Guediguian (pushes for an alliance with Hamon)… and Chavez (Admiration for Venezuela)

Similar to Macron’s with otan instead of fmi in the list

58% positive (amongst non neutral). Near Le Pen and above Fillon and Macron


No crystal ball here but Fillon’s hashtag popularity (hashtags mean the desire to find/track the candidate. it’s not a simple writing. it’s an identification) is an important sign.

  • Fillon’s voters are known to be older. Hashtag popularity can mean a greater penetration amongst younger people which could be beneficial for Fillon
  • Twitter, and thus hashtag activity, looks clean and genuine
  • No strong negative, affairs et al, seem to influence or influence tweets
  • For both left and right primaries, the hashtag leader won elections

All in all, Fillon is likely.