Using Klout to Measure Your Social Media Influence

Using Klout to Measure Your Social Media Influence:
How Reliable Is It?

Have you heard of Klout? It’s a tool that measures your influence on customers, clients, or anyone else who follows you through social media. It has its flaws—we’ll discuss those in a moment—but it’s useful because it offers yet another way to measure your ROI. Whether you’re a marketer or business owner, you want to be sure you’re spending your time and money wisely, and using strategies and tools that accomplish your social networking goals. Klout can help you do that, although we don’t recommend you reliably on it to the exclusion of other tools—at least, not yet.

Currently, Klout is being used to: 

Generate guest lists for special events. Last year, Virgin America used Klout scores to find and invite guests to their Toronto Launch Event. Qualified “influencers” were flown free to the party. [1] To their credit, Virgin America told guests that they were not obligated to Tweet or blog about the event if they accepted the invitation. They also asked guests to disclose their free flights if and when mentioned the event or company.[2]

Offer product samples for review. Popchips, a company that makes all-natural snacks, has used Klout to find snack-food “influencers.” Those people received free samples of Popchips when the company started marketing their products in new cities.

Research and find bloggers. Services like Blogdash help companies find individual bloggers who have influence regarding their products or services. The Huffington Post has started putting a widget below each of its article, so readers looking for more information on the topic can find the top influential bloggers. [3]

Klout isn’t perfect. One objection users raise is that it leans too heavily on Twitter, even though it’s integrated into Facebook. Some users also criticize its algorithmic formula, saying human analysis is still needed to determine exactly how we influence each other, and why. [4] Others are already figuring out ways to “game the system,” or persuade followers to cite them as influential about certain desired topics. That kind of misuse turns Klout into a popularity contest, and skews results, rather than allowing it to work as a genuine analytical device.

Will Klout address these and other issues, and emerge as a worthy competitor to other ways of measuring your social networking outreach? Can Klout eliminate its current potential for abuse and bias? A new report says that Facebook lost about 6 million U.S. users in May, although it continues to grow overseas. Will new players like Klout move in to claim the social networking field? We’ll be watching to find out, and we’ll keep you posted.

 

 

If you’d like to know more about Professional Mojo, give us a call at 678-561-6656 or email us at Info@ProfessionalMojo.com.

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