EU Referendum: the voter lowdown

The EU Referendum is one of the biggest political decisions the nation will have to make. But what does digital marketing reveal about British people’s thoughts and search habits ahead of June 23rd 2016? More than you think…

Target market

The Leave and Remain campaigns each have a target market (although admittedly very over-generalised!). Data collected from YouGov suggests a typical ‘Remain’ supporter is a middle-class Scottish university graduate under 30 years old, whereas a typical ‘Leave’ supporter is a pensioner in East Anglia.

Vote leave website has more website visits

In the last 28 days, the pro-Brexit website VoteLeaveTakeControl.org has seen 373,000 visits in the UK, compared to 185,000 visits for Strongerin.co.uk. Further analysis concludes that Google search positions for VoteLeaveTakeControl.org and Strongerin.co.uk are at number 3 and number 1, respectively.

Top EU referendum searches

From the 1st to the 28th May, Hitwise collated data from the online activity of 3 million Britons. They found that those who use the term ‘EU referendum’ as opposed to ‘Brexit’ in search terms are more likely to include the words ‘expats,’ ‘holiday,’ ‘students’ and ‘council.’ On the other hand, those referring to the situation as ‘Brexit’ are more likely to include the words ‘workers,’ ‘ISIS,’ ‘immigration,’ and ‘war.’
Again, ‘immigrants’ was the top keyword used in searches for ‘EU Leave’ and ‘cost’ was the top keyword for ‘EU Stay.’ This may not provide the full picture of what people are thinking about the referendum but it’s an interesting insight all the same. The results strongly suggest that people supporting ‘EU Leave’ and ‘EU Stay’ are most likely to be concerned about immigration and economic changes, respectively.
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Age and gender in searches

When we look at the age ranges of the nation there’s actually not a lot of difference – except among those aged 18 – 24 where voters are 3% more likely to vote ‘Stay’, and those aged 55+ who are 2% more likely to vote ‘Leave.’ This may suggest that older voters want to go back to a pre-EU Britain, the one they know best and feel safer in. The results may also indicate that younger Britons are a little more likely to vote ‘Stay’ because they want to keep the advantages of ‘Freedom of Movement’ in order to travel or work in the EU.
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However, there is a significant difference between males and females. The gender bias is clear in females supporting the ‘Remain’ campaign with 54% choosing to stay, compared to 46% of male ‘Remain’ supporters. This 8% difference is almost 4 times bigger than the 2% difference in male and female ‘Leave’ supporters.
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Source: Hitwise
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Written by Shannon May