Traditional media is not dead now and never will be. Look closely at the survey results and you’ll see that people still want information; they are just changing the way they want to receive it. As the younger generation takes over, they might look for their news online BUT they are not abandoning traditional media altogether.
So, therein lies the paradox – in social media, popularity means influence and is being used to make marketing decisions, yet those with the most influence might not necessarily be the most popular. The time has come to stop relying on the tired definitions of influence, and develop new ways to find those in the social media atmosphere who really have influence and the power to change behavior.
In my last blog, “Clout vs. Klout – Or the Real Meaning of Social Influence,” I pulled together information which concluded that the most visible people are not necessarily correlated with influence, and word-of-mouth recognition can only be harnessed by targeting large numbers of ordinary influencers. That naturally raises the question, “Who are these influencers and how DO we find them?” Is there some way of identifying those people who are connected to a critical mass of easily influenced people?
I’ve done some reading lately which has brought together and focused my theory of marketing through online influencers. Awareness Networks published a white paper entitled “3 Keys to Influence: Understanding and Leveraging Influence.”
They report several strong reasons why marketers should seek social media influence:
90% of purchases are subject to social influence
90% of consumers rely on recommendations from people they know
67% of shoppers are willing to spend more money online after seeing recommendations from friends
So, the theory goes, if we identify the main social influencers, we should be able to effect change or motivate action. That’s where the debate begins…who are the influencers and how do we find them? The Awareness Report then lists elements of influence as authority, reputation, rank, and status. While some of this makes sense, I believe they put too much emphasis on rank.
“We believe influence is the ability to drive action.”
Since when did the premise that simply “believing” something give one the ability to define anything as true? If I believe that chocolate makes one hungry, is that the “Standard” of hunger?
How can we trust our reputations and our own brands to a company who simply “believes” they are the standard measurement in which only their “belief” defines what it is that they measure? Be very careful. Klout is playing a very dangerous game with our brands. Klout maintains their claim that they are not selling our data. However, I will make a case today that will show you that Klout not only sells our data but also engages in activity that is a direct breach of the terms and conditions of Twitter’s public API.
In my world, a Scientist has data which they carefully record trials are run and experiments are engaged to prove a hypothesis. When a data supported and document experiment is found to support a hypothesis, the experiment must then be duplicatable or the results are deemed invalid. No Scientist in the Science world would ever toss their hands in the air and say, “Sorry we have a glitch and we are in Beta, so just be patient with us!”
Many users have been asking me over past few days how to get their profiles removed from Klout. Not surprisingly, your profile can not be removed from Klout.com. However, Klout is now offering an option to “disable” your profile from public visibility with a graphic that states “this profile has been disabled”. To do so, you need to send an email request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Once your profile is “disabled”, be aware that Klout is still collecting and utilizing your data from Social Media Platforms. To prevent them from collecting and utilizing your data, please note that you need to revoke access of Klout applications in every social media platform that was linked to your Klout Account. Since Klout did not include complete information on revoking their access to your data, please find the below instructions on how to revoke Klout’s access.