Elections Fever: Swing State Trends, Voter Turnout and Controversy

T-minus 21 days to Elections Day, November 6!
Will you vote? How will you vote?

Election fever is reaching a new pitch and, like many others, iCharts continues to track milestones and highlights by-the-numbers to document the course of this year’s political story. A few themes have become stand-outs as the world debates what will define results on November 6. Below are a few we’ve been tracking at iCharts.

Swing States Twitter Trends

There are seven states we’re capturing Twitter mentions for on a weekly basis with a little help from Peoplebrowsr’s API. Curious what last week looked like? Check out trends, by state, based on Twitter candidate mentions for week ending October 13.

New Hampshire

Voter Turnout 

For as much buzz as the Presidential Elections get every four years, only 64.1% turned out to the polls in 2008. It was seen at the biggest turnout since 1908, with a higher-than-norm appearance from the Democratic party and lag amongst Republicans.

In 2008, the boost for the Democratic party came largely from higher-than-average turnout rates amongst the Hispanic and African-American community. In 2012, it remains to be seen if this trend will carry forward as new voter registrations for these demographics and young people have been going down in recent years.

Controversial Topics

Over coming weeks you’ll continue to see iCharts publish data points about opinions on government control (see below chart), foreign policy, job creation and healthcare.

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What topics are you most focused on to make your choice on November 6? We’d love to hear from you to spark new charting projects through November.

Inside the Olympics - Now Live!

Our special events ChartChannel Inside the Olympics is now live!

Did you know there are over 8,000 torchbearers during the relay?
That over 4 BILLION online viewers are expected to follow the Olympics?
Or that a women holds the fastest Olympic record in the 200M butterfly swim?

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The Evolution of Media

An article recently published by GigaOM caught our eye. It talked about media and disruption. And how formats - the way we tell stories - need to change. We couldn’t agree more.

“…the discussion that media theorist Jeff Jarvis and others have been having for some time now about how the news “story” needs to be blown up or dismantled, or at the very least re-thought. Since the way that news occurs and the ways in which information reaches us has been completely disrupted by the web and the democratization of distribution, the argument is that we need to have different models and formats for handling that information intelligently — whether it’s with tools like Storify or new ways of aggregating and filtering data in order to make it meaningful.”

How does this translate back to consumer and business behavior?

1.. We’re a Scanning Society and best remember news and information in visual formats. Why else have Flickr (the old) Instagram and Pinterest (the new) become so popular? Because we remember things best when set to sight, color and sound.

2. We are accustomed, even prefer, to digest and share information in bite-size formats (short form vs. long form). Pictures, memes, infographics and charts all factor into this choice of format (a.k.a. storytelling). All of these are easier to synthesize and share than a 1,000+ word article or white paper.

3. Marketers and publishers alike are shifting from an emphasis on Paid Media to Earned Media, realizing that trust - as a brand, as a news media outlet - stems from content with “soul” and original viral
elements (share-features) versus interruption-based marketing via paid channels.

How does iCharts respond to this? 

We already are by providing creative storytelling solutions to the marketers (Coca Cola), publishers (MarketWatch), market research firms (comScore) and educators.

Watch as we continue to innovate in a space that begs to be re-defined with new formats and new (visual) and data-driven marketing.

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Charting Our Way Through the Olympics and Elections 2012

July 2012 brings us barbeques, ballgames and summer movies. But what are the most anticipated, historical events to chart? The Olympics and Elections 2012.

The Olympics: Told Like Never Before.
Ever follow the Olympics via charts? We certainly haven’t. But this year, you will. Stay tuned for great coverage spotlighting the “Road to the Olympics”, along with “Inside the Olympics” stats and news coverage throughout the event. Subscribe to London Olympics 2012 charts.


Elections 2012
Every four years, the journey to the White House calls on Amerians to weigh their political views. Healthcare, immigration, marriage rights, and job security are just one of many topics already playing a large role in guiding American sentiment. Watch for additional coverage - via charts - over coming months from data sources such as Reuters, Politico, Gallup and more. Subscribe to Elections 2012 charts.

Want to become a data partner to share your stories? Please contact us.

Why, When to Chart


Charts are either loved or hated.  Loved…for their ability to capture and create stand-alone stories. Hated… for the complexity and time and it takes to move from data collection > story creation > distribution. iCharts is here to help.

Why Chart?

Charts aren’t just a quick way to share dense information; they are images that convey a bigger storyline, a 101 for captivating communications. As Peter Guber argues, “Humans simply aren’t moved to action by ‘data dumps,’ dense PowerPoint slides, or spreadsheets packed with figures. People are moved by emotion. The best way to emotionally connect other people to our agenda begins with ‘Once upon a time…’ “.

When to Chart?

The Obvious
When you have data to drive a story.

The (Less) Obvious
When you have small or big datasets (e.g. top 10 lists vs. aggregated survey results of a recent poll) to share on social networks. Both use cases, regardless of data depth, have valuable factoid pass-along power when combined with strong visualizations.

The Upside?
Short-term, additive audience reach. Long-term, charts tweeted or shared in a social context get indexed on search engines Get your charting on!

Want to become a data partner to share your stories for FREE? Please contact us.

The Next Gen of Data Discovery, In-Chart

The (Data) Story Told by You. Interpreted by the World.

Charts used to lead us down a pathway to a single data story. But we are now in a time where we expect more from everything we consume. We want to customize. We want to discover. And not only in ways that define what we listen to or what we buy, but in how we also look at data. Data now needs to deliver dynamic ways of synthesizing information. iCharts frees data from singular points of view and empowers viewers to draw meaningful insights.

Take this standard chart below. At first glance you see that the tertiary programs most popularly undertaken across a majority of OECD countries are in the social sciences, business and law fields. But click on the colored circles in the legend to also compare and contrast fields across countries.

What else have you drawn about these education choices? What do you suspect is driving clear wins in specific countries? What does it imply about how the global economy exchanges goods and services today and in the future as students become full participants in their local economies?

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Cool, right? We’re only scratching the surface! What about being able to analyze across segments or drill down to more specific groups or circumstances?

PowerCharts are iCharts synced to survey data with filters that allow more complex and customized cuts within data. For example, how far can you dig into the Supermarket Impression Breakdown? Click on the yellow filters to slice and dice across age, gender, education, marital status, region and quarter. How do supermaket brands perform across demographics in preceding quarters?

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Share your data story. Let the world discover more within your data. Get started now with an iCharts free trial account.

Playing the Game: Data Collection, Visualization and Social Sharing

Big data, small data. It’s easy to get lost in the shuffle. And everyday iCharts wrestles through what the larger industry is facing – an identity crisis with data.

The most prolific challenges lie in…

  1. Data collection that delivers against specific business goals
  2. Data management to absorb old and new frontiers (e.g. Open Graph, Advertising Analytics) in a meaningful, action-oriented approach
  3. Data visualization (a.k.a. charts) and socializing at the speed of light to provide turnkey, shareable decision logic for larger business problems like how/when iterate a product and visual masterpieces for bloggers and stand-alone market researchers

At iCharts, we believe that solving these challenges start with a few key ingredients. (Note: iCharts is focused on #3)
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