Only 20 percent of a group of 2000 metropolitan adults support what Julius Malema says and does, a recent survey revealed.
"This is in the same region as the 17 percent of September 2011, the 21 percent measured in mid-2010 and down on the 27 percent seen at the end of 2009," the researchers said on Wednesday.
The study was conducted by TNS South Africa between April 13 and 24, before the African National Congress Youth League leader was expelled from the ANC.
Eight percent of those polled gave a "don't know" response -- down from 11 percent last year.
Asked to agree or disagree with the statement: "I support what Julius Malema says and does", blacks were 27 percent in favour, whites eight percent, coloureds five percent and Indians/Asians six percent.
Researchers found a drop in support for Malema among 18 to 24-year-olds -- to 21 percent, from 26 percent in 2001 -- and a rise among 35 to 59-year-olds.
Support among 35 to 59-year-olds rose to 19 percent from 13 percent, and for 50 to 59-year-olds it rose from seven to 14 percent.
Support in the 60 plus age group rose from five to six percent.
His support levels reach 25 percent among the unemployed, compared with 19 percent amongst those working.
Twenty one percent of men showed support for Malema, compared with 18 percent of women.
The gender difference was "particularly marked" for blacks at 29 percent for men and 25 percent for women.
However, the figure for blacks is slightly up on the 26 percent for 2011, but down on the 30 percent in 2010. The eight percent support from whites is also up on the two percent in 2011, and five percent in 2010.
The figure for coloureds rose from zero in 2011 and seven percent in 2010.
In Gauteng, Malema's overall support stood at 28 percent, up from 20 percent in September 2011. In mid 2010, it was 23 percent and at end 2009 it was 32 percent.
His highest support in Gauteng in the latest survey was in Soweto at 42 percent (23 percent September 2011, 34 percent mid 2010, 31 percent end 2009) and lowest in the Vaal Triangle at 19 percent (31 percent September 2011, 16 percent mid 2010, 30 percent end 2009).
In Cape Town it was nine percent (11 percent for the three previous surveys); in Durban 10 percent (12 percent September 2011, 24 percent mid 2011, 32 percent end 2009); in Port Elizabeth nine percent (22 percent September 2011, eight percent mid 2011, 17 percent end 2009); and East London 14 percent (nine percent September 2011, 25 percent mid 2011, 24 percent end 2009) and in Bloemfontein 11 percent (43 percent September 2011, 33 percent mid 2001, 40 percent end 2009).
In terms of language, support levels are highest among those whose home language is Setswana (36 percent) and the lowest among isiXhosa speakers (22 percent), with isiZulu home language speakers coming in at 25 percent and SeSotho speakers at 29 percent.