Over the last 24 hours we’ve received a bunch of inquiries from journalists regarding Donald Trump’s surge of twitter followers on the account, @realdonaldtrump. Along this subject, there has been some easily disprovable information going viral. Considering that SocialRank focuses on granular audience data, we thought we might put together a quick post that shows some real facts about Donald Trump’s followers.
— 🏹The Mockingjay🔥 (@txmockingjay) May 30, 2017
@realDonaldTrump << account has gained over 5 million followers in less than 3 days. Mostly bots. He’s getting ready for something.
— JΞSŦΞR ✪ ΔCŦUΔL³³º¹ (@th3j35t3r) May 30, 2017
The viral posts above by @txmockingjay and @th3j35t3r appear to be the start of the misinformation. The claim that Trump’s follower base increased by 5M is easily disproved by the greatest tool ever created, the Wayback Machine. Using the site, users can see that @realDonaldTrump had 30.6M followers on May 26th (3 days before the post). Nonetheless, @th3j35t3r and @txmockingjay’s tweets aren’t completely wrong as there has been an odd surge of fake/bot accounts following @realDonaldTrump’s account in the past month.
This newsworthy data was highlighted in early February; Mashable’s Kerry Flynn wrote an article using SocialRank data that showed that out of the 24.1M followers @realDonaldTrump had, 5M of them were egg accounts (i.e. no profile photo). Now, as of May 22nd (the last time @realDonaldTrump data fully ran in the system), he has just under 31M followers and 9.1M of them are eggs. This means that out of the 7M new followers, over 4M of them are eggs. Whereas in February his egg accounts made up 20% of his followers, they now make up almost 33% of his followers. Needless to say, this is a very big change in a short time.
Perhaps even more shocking is that in May alone, 927k egg accounts followed @realdonaldtrump. Out of this number, 711k (77%) have never posted. Additionally, each egg account has an average of only 1.6 followers. This begs the question – why are there so many meaningless followers?
We think that the rise of these accounts could be explained by two things:
1) Someone is buying followers for @realDonaldTrump’s account.
2) Being added to the “who to follow” list really juiced the number of egg accounts following him.
Here is some other interesting data that we found on the 9.1M egg followers:
- 55.8% (5,077,800) never tweeted
- 17.2% (1,565,200) recently tweeted (i.e. in last 90 days)
- 27% (2,457,000) haven’t recently tweeted (tweeted but not in the last 90 days)
- 95.74% of the egg followers have under 25 followers
- Top 10 most popular hashtags in posts by the 9.1M egg followers:
- #maga, #trump, #myfirsttweet, #giveaway, #makeamericagreatagain, #periscope, #fakenews, #trumptrain, #tcot, #debate
- Top 5 most popular words in posts by the 9.1M egg followers
- realdonaldtrump, trump, president, news, live
- 46.4% (4,226,609) of the 9.1M have between 0 and 1 followers
- 7.9K of egg followers have trump in their bio
- 49.8K of egg followers tweeted #maga
- 1.9 million of eggs have tweeted since he became president
- 8 of these egg accounts are verified
- 927k of his egg followers registered and followed him in May
- See chart above for the breakdown in the activity of his new followers
- Tuesday 8-10pm is the most popular time for the eggs to post
- On 5/24 59,358 of Trump’s egg accounts registered (largest single day)