By Daniel Hunter

While the Conservatives and Labour vie for top spot in the conventional General Election polls, new research by specialist marketing recruiter EMR reveals the UK Independence Party (UKIP) is going head-to-head with its more established rivals for social media supremacy.

The proliferation of social media makes this year’s contest the biggest ‘digital election’ in the history of UK politics. EMR’s research examines the social media presence of the seven main political parties and reveals how the House of Commons would look in May 2015 if seats were allocated according to followers or likes.

It reveals the Tories have the biggest aggregate following across Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Google+ with almost 541,000: 24% of the total 2.2m ‘digital votes’ across the four social media platforms.

Labour trails behind with 19% — more than 122,000 behind the Conservatives — and UKIP currently occupies second place with almost 445,000 followers: 20% of the total following for the main political parties.

The Liberal Democrats and Green parties are both tied on 12% of the aggregated following and are separated by just 8,000 followers/likes, with the SNP closely behind with 11% of the vote.

Simon Bassett, Managing Director at EMR, said:
“The flurry of digital activity to accompany every pre-election promise shows that political strategists are taking heed of what communications professionals have long known: that an effective digital offering is fundamental to any winning campaign.

“The Tories have an impressive lead in terms of aggregated following on social media, with their vision for Britain being shared with almost a quarter of the politically engaged ‘digital electorate’.FIFA Ultimate Team Coins With the race hotting up, it will be interesting to see if Labour is willing to spend big in order to close this gap.

“The less established parties may well be pining for a digital democracy following the results of our research. A Parliament built on social media would see the Greens take 76 seats and UKIP 130: many more than they are likely to win under the current electoral system.”