Juice, stroke, Klout!

Interesting article in the Sunday Review section of the New York Times (I think I used the last of my 20 free accesses for the month). It’s about the growing importance (?) of online influence.

“If you have a Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn account, you are already being judged — or will be soon. Companies with names like Klout, PeerIndex and Twitter Grader are in the process of scoring millions, eventually billions, of people on their level of influence — or in the lingo, rating “influencers.” Yet the companies are not simply looking at the number of followers or friends you’ve amassed. Rather, they are beginning to measure influence in more nuanced ways, and posting their judgments — in the form of a score — online.”

Yes, I check my Klout score from time to time but it’s never gotten above 40. 39 as of a few minutes ago. But 40 suggests “a strong, but niche, following.” Niche being the operative word. And the average Klout score is in the high teens, so…

“After analyzing 22 million tweets last year, researchers at Hewlett-Packard found that it’s not enough to attract Twitter followers — you must inspire those followers to take action. In other words, influence is about engagement and motivation, not just racking up legions of followers.”

Is there any sort of analogue to this in the world of traditional advertising? Do we even care about the influence of someone hearing our radio ad?

“Industry professionals say it’s also important to focus your digital presence on one or two areas of interest. Don’t be a generalist. Most importantly: be passionate, knowledgeable and trustworthy.”

Half the fun of checking your Klout score is comparing your score to your friends and acquaintances.

My pal David Brazeal is off on his own now and needs as much Klout as he can get. He’s something of an expert on “weather, lightening & tornados.” Jonathan Brownfield should be higher given his access to beautiful, large-breasted young women.

My plan is to stand outside Hooters and wait for a bad storm.

One thought on “Juice, stroke, Klout!

  1. I love Klout’s judgment of my expertise. On the night of the Joplin tornado, I accidentally snapped a picture of a lightning bolt next to a rainbow. I posted it on Twitter and lots of people shared it. And that, apparently, was enough to make me an expert on weather and lightning.

    I also think my score is artificially high because of that, but don’t tell anyone.

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