Who is the Average Donald Trump Supporter?

What Facebook’s insights tool says about Trump fans

Rob Leathern
Dec 8, 2015 · 4 min read

Facebook has a powerful advertising targeting system, that lets you directly target users who’ve expressed millions of interests, overlapped with data sourced from third-party providers (matched with Facebook user email addresses and other identifiers). There are immensely interesting insights that can be extracted from their Audience Insights tool if you simply have a Facebook ad account.

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Using the Facebook Insights tool, I did some quick comparisons between the overall US Facebook audience of 150 to 200 million monthly unique visitors, and those who are interested in or follow Donald Trump, according to Facebook (see left for the specific Interests that we used for this query).

Here are some selected characteristics of the 10–15 million people that Facebook identifies as fans of Donald Trump, or his campaign. I compare the incidence of each row with the overall incidence across the entire US Facebook population and show a red negative score if Trump fans are underrepresented in that population, or a green positive score if Trump fans tend to overindex for that characteristic. Take a look below:

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Source: Facebook Audience Insights

So, for example, roughly 1.7% of Trump’s monthly audience is identified as African American compared to 12.5% of the US Facebook monthly audience, meaning an 87% lower than average incidence there. Or Trump fans are 33% less likely to use a Gmail email account as their primary email address, and so on.

Note that for each, Facebook provides a range (e.g. 250–300k; I take the higher end of the range and divide that into the high end of the total audience range).

The above figures I had to calculate an incidence for, but Facebook provides a lot more information that is automatically indexed to their US audience and easy to read as is from the website; so I’m going to share much of it as is, without comment here.

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Top categories Trump fans are interested in compared to an average user
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Trump fans skew heavily male (60% vs. 46% for all Facebook)
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Trump supporters tend to have $40–100k HH income, lower home values
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Top jobs for Trump fans
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Trump Page Likes
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Lots of desktop users, iPhones/iPads but fewer Android phones/mobile web use
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Trump supporters underindex slightlyfor graduate school and college
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Retail top categories
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In market for pickup trucks and full-size sedans more than the average consumer
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Some cities that have an abundance of Trump supporters
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Very active users including ad clickers. Device usage in this chart is for all devices (before was primary device)

Finally, here are some lifestyle categorizations called Personicx, provided by a third-party data firm called Acxiom, details are here:

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Personicx by Acxiom, Source: Facebook

I encourage reporters to play around with the Audience Insights tools that Facebook has, and I’m always happy to help answer any questions (having spent a LONG time look at this type of data at my former company and helping Fortune 500 companies figure out how to target their Facebook ad campaigns). It would be good if those insights could be put to a more positive use!


Edited to add: I added some data so you can take a look at how the 3.5–4 million Ted Cruz fans compare to Trump (first image) and then along some of the same Facebook-provided metrics...

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e.g. Cruz fans 41% or 1.41x more likely to be Hispanic than are Trump fans
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Cruz: demographics, even more male-skewed
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Cruz fans $40k-100k predominant, fewer singles, own, tend to have kids
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Huge skew towards Desktop computer only, fewer iphones/mobile-only
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Cruz page likes
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Cruz slightly overindex for college/grad school
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Also might be in the market for a truck
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Obvious Texas skew
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Pet lovers
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Veterans/military/government well-represented again
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Check with Acxiom to see what this all means(!)

Thanks for reading, plenty more available with a Facebook ads account — and also, you’re able to target ads to all of these folks if you so choose.

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