Dell computers and Jeff Jarvis will likely be forever tied in the great annals of the online world. Back in 2005, Jarvis wrote a post that helped spread the idea of “Dell hell.” The way Dell responded from that time forward not only made Dell a social media and customer service darling, but it also opened peoples’ eyes to how social media can be used to influence people, companies, and events. In this post, Kunal Gandhi does a good job of summarizing the evolution from Dell hell to social media darling.
Back in 2010, before Klout was even an apple in anyone’s eye, Hubspot hosted what it called The Influencer Project. Sixty people offered a one-minute explanation of how they recommended you build influence online. It’s pretty interesting to see how people were talking about influence before Klout and Kred were in the picture. This post is a great resource to return to now and then. Who can believe that 2010 is already “the good old days?”
Is Klout actually making it easier for people to seem influential? It’s been noted that Klout can indeed be gamed. It’s easy to look at a person’s score. Ipso facto, infuencers may not have to jump through quite as many hoops these days to prove themselves to be, well, influential. Is this a bad thing, as Sam Fiorella argues? Is it possible that Klout is evening the playing field so that more people have a chance to become influential? What do you think?
Jure Klepic offers an in-depth analysis here of why Klout is not a reliable measure to determine who the real online “influencers” are. He believes that popularity is too often confused with real influence, and he also notes that Klout scores can be gamed so that people who seem influential may simply be good at manipulating an online platform. Jure offers a lot of interesting supplementary resources that are also worth exploring in detail.
What exactly does it mean to influence people? In what he calls this “attention economy,” Douglas Idugboe suggests that there are actually 7 different ways you can influence people. You can be a leader, a caregiver…all different ways to make an impact on people. This extends beyond a purely numerical measure like a Klout or Kred score and places a greater emphasis on the human aspect of influence. Given all of that, what kind of influencer are you? And do you agree with these seven layers of influence?
Ever heard of the abominable snowman? Well, according to Geoff Livingston, finding a real influencer who can make a measurable difference for you online may be just as hard as finding a real abominable snowman. Why does Geoff believe influencers are mythical? Read this fantastic post and then weigh in!
Often times, words are used interchangeably that really should not be used interchangeably. Jim Connolly suggests that this is the case with “influence” and “social proof.” Connolly argues that influence is something that can be proven. For example, you say or do something and it makes a definite difference for someone (good or bad). Social proof, however (and ironically given the name) can be pretty easily faked.
What do you make of these words and phrases? Weigh in!
When Klout first opened its virtual doors, it was hard not to run into people who either loved it or hated it – but everyone had an opinion. And, it seemed, everyone had an account. I have to admit, when Klout first came out I couldn’t resist checking in every once in awhile. I couldn’t help but notice that the less I tweeted, the more my score went down. Then the +Ks came out, and I found out I was influential in things like kitties. I love kitties, and I’m not going to say I’m bummed out about that, but it didn’t really seem to carry a lot of professional weight for me. After a year or so of similarly contradictory thoughts, Sam Fiorella opted to put his virtual money where his virtual mouth was. He deleted his Klout account and has never looked back. Do you agree with Sam’s reasoning? Weigh in!
Mark Willaman wrote a really interesting post that covers a lot of topics. In particular, I thought his focus on “influential” lists was interesting. Who makes these lists? What are they really about? Are those people really influential or is the list maker just doing them a favor? After performing some tests and experiments, Willaman came to the conclusion that if you do make an “influential” list, you probably won’t stay there long. How you influence people and whether you influence people is perpetually in flux. What does that mean for the buzzwords “online influence?” Weigh in on the post and voice your thoughts!
If you are trying to build a brand around your own products and services, the topic of influence may weight a lot more heavy on your head than it might for someone who is working for someone within a more corporate, traditional structure. For some people, influence may become the new way to measure how they are doing in terms of reaching out to the right people and making an impact on customers – existing and potential. Has influence become the new online currency? To me it seems that currency should still be the currency if you are in business. Read this post and see where you fall on this issue.