Erendira Mancias

Donald Trump's likes and shares spiked on Facebook as he took center state at the Republican National Convention this week, despite what seemed to be the campaign's communication missteps.

First there was the introduction of Governor Mike Pence of Indiana as his running mate.  That didn't go so well.  On Monday the Republican National Convention opened amid protests by anti-Trump demonstrators. Oh, and Melania Trump got caught plagiarizing Michelle Obama in her opening day speech. Trump's reaction and the statement campaign made apologizing for the error, generated the most buzz this week.

The campaign posted this to Melania Trump's Facebook page:

And then this.


After being largely quiet through most of the campaign, traffic to the possible First Lady's Facebook page spiked. It increased by 10%, up 73,707 likes for the week, giving her a cumulative total of 720,341 likes overall. Traffic to the Facebook pages of four of Trump's children, who also headlined at the convention, increased, too.

But to put this in perspective, Michelle Obama 's verified Facebook page also saw a slight boost in traffic. Yep, the incumbent First Lady also made an appearance this week that went viral. Michelle Obama's page was up 0.3%, gaining 66,319 likes for the week—nearly as many likes as Melania Trump received — for a cumulative total of 15.5 million total likes to her page. Here is the big difference, though. The First Lady hasn't posted to her verified page since 2013.

And yet, despite it all — a week of fraught communications and an acceptance speech that pundits called  'gloomy' and 'depressing' — the number of likes to Trump's Facebook paged soared to 1.57 million. Thank god for family.


Data source: CrowdTangle API. Above: 'Likes' per day for each candidate's official campaign account on Facebook for the prior 60-day period ending on the date noted above. Middle: 'Shares' per day by candidate. Below: Number of posts per day to the candidate's Facebook accounts. Current week demarcated by dashed line.

Top candidate posts of the week:

Here are the posts that received the most (and least) likes and shares respectively for each candidate in the past week.


Donald Trump

Most LikesMost SharedLeast Likes

Hillary Clinton

Most LikesMost SharedLeast Likes


Kate Stohr is a data journalist and community builder based in San Francisco, CA.