Last week we discussed building your authority. One way in which you can do this it look at your social influence.
When you influence someone, you have had an effect on their opinions, attitudes and/or behaviours. For example, you’ve just tried out this fantastic authentic Mexican restaurant in the city that made the best tacos you’ve ever had for a very reasonable price. You then tell a friend about it, they too love Mexican and can’t wait to check it out. You’ve influenced them based on your experience and also potentially your expertise in finding great restaurants.
Social influence is “a change in an individual’s thoughts, feelings, attitudes, or behaviours that results from interaction with another individual or a group.” (Source: Blackwell Publishing).
The growth of social media means the reach of an individuals social influence has grown dramatically in recent years. We all have networks of people we connect with on a regular basis and this network branches out even further when you look at friends of friends and so on. You can quickly see the power that social influence can have and why brands would be keen to get in amongst it.
Your social profile is valuable, while it’s not for everybody, it is becoming increasingly important. For example, when people are recruiting for a position they are often reviewing your online profile in addition to reading your resume before they even meet with you.
In order for us to better understand social influence, there are a variety of social influence metrics or tools that have been developed. We’ve listed a few of the most popular ones here that are definitely worth checking out:
Klout currently appears to be the leader in the space. Based on your activity on social networks you receive a score out of 100 (average of 20). The score is calculated based on how many people you influence (e.g when you tweet or post something do people engage and share it), how much you influence them (does it spread further than your connections) and the influence of your network (number of top influencers share and respond to your content). Klout also gives you the opportunity to recognise someones influence by giving them +K.
Key influencers are also offered ‘Klout Perks’ which are exclusive products and experiences you receive from brands who want to connect with the influencers online and benefit from their word of mouth.
Kred works by measuring social influence amongst special interest communities (e.g marketing, social media etc.) and creates scores not only for the individual in the community but for the overall network. It’s also completely transparent, so you can see exactly what activity has contributed to your user scores and get a better understanding of how it all works.
The two key metrics that Kred focuses on is your influence on social networks (on a normalised 1000 point scale) and also your outreach or generosity in sharing other peoples content. You can also upload offline activities that are relevant to your social influence. Like Klout, you can also give recognition to people who have positively influenced you by giving them +Kred.
PeerIndex is a measure of your authority online. It’s not just about how active you are, it’s also how receptive people are to your activity.
Your score is calculated compared to others in the population in terms of your authority (how much people rely on your opinion), audience (how many people you’re connected to that are impacted by you) and activity (in relation to the topic communities). They also have a PeerPerks rewards program for your influence where you can receive high value exclusive offers based on your PeerIndex.
PeerIndex was also recently named as one of East London’s 20 Hottest Tech Startups so they’re definitely one to watch.
Like anything, each social influence metric will have its strengths and also limitations. Likewise, there will always be people that can game these systems. While people do question the accuracy of some of these tools, they will only improve with time. As long as you treat the scores as indicative of social influence rather than as a definitive measurement, they can be useful way to better understand peoples social influence online.
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