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Republican-sponsored hashtag “#areyoubetteroff” backfires when Twitter users answer “yes”

The Romney campaign didn't get the response it expected from a promoted Twitter hashtag playing on a famous Reagan quote.


Mike Fenn


Posted on Sep 5, 2012   Updated on Jun 2, 2021, 11:37 am CDT

It appears that the Republican Party has a few things to learn about Twitter.

Early on Sep. 4, the GOP bought #areyoubetteroff using Twitter’s promoted hashtag service, which, AdWeek reports, costs $120,000 per day.

Its goal was to use Twitter to further the party’s agenda by referring to a famous question asked by Ronald Reagan in 1980, and again by Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on Aug. 30: “Are you better off now than you were four years ago?”

Unfortunately for the Romney campaign, the hashtag didn’t get the response they were hoping for.

Many Twitter users replied “yes.”

#AreYouBetterOff than you were 4 years ago? Why yes…yes I am!” tweeted Nina Smith.

“I have health insurance, a car, a college degree, and PELL getting my to my BA and beyond. #AreYouBetterOff I know I am” tweeted Lauren.

Even celebrities have answered the query.

#AreYouBetterOff with Obama or the guy who made a fortune by intentionally bankrupting American companies? Take your time on this one.. #DNC,” tweeted comedian Chris Rock.

Some Twitter users have even used the hashtag to answer questions unrelated to the political race, asking their exes, “#Areyoubetteroff without me?”

According to Twitter analytics service Topsy, #areyoubetteroff has been paired with “yes” more than 1,800 times in the past 24 hours, compared with around 600 “no” responses. The hashtag also spawned reply tags, including #iambetteroff and #betteroff.

So far, official Democratic Party Twitter account @TheDemocrats has not officially replied to the #areyoubetteroff meme.

Photo by Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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*First Published: Sep 5, 2012, 3:22 pm CDT