As influencers, online marketers, and people who count all the engagement that comes in – we need to remember that we also need to know where we as people (or a business) stand. Most marketers and businesses focus on analytics, not really looking at what could jumpstart their campaigns, what content is worthy of re-sharing (and remember, recycling is good!), and which people are worthy a follow. So, where does one start? Klout.
When Klout came roaring 5-6 years ago, people were raging. The 1-100 scale of awesomeness was a ladder that everyone was eagerly climbing as hard as possible. However, for the first years the algorithm wan’t impressive enough, most influencers were not convinced of the Klout way. But fear not, Klout has made the best of the last years and has grown with knowledge every marketing professional should take advantage of.
How does Klout….Klout?
The algorithm takes in the most popular social media websites that you are a part of:
- Twitter: The more retweets and mentions you receive, the better for your score. However, you also get points for being placed on lists. It is also better to have 100 people retweet 3 tweets, than one person retweet 97 of your tweets. It is not about one singular person, but also more so about the reach and engagement on a greater scale. The number of followers is does not directly impact your score, but having a large amount of followers with real accounts is a bonus.
- Facebook: Not much different than Twitter. The amount of likes, shares, and comments on content that you have created is very important. But it does not stop there, each mention or tag you receive is just as important – this proves that you are being talked about. Once again, the number of friends or subscribers plays no significant role.
- Google+: This social media site has one little bump, the only +1’s that are counted are the ones you get on your public posts. Unfortunately, Klout does not measure posts that were made to individual circles. This also goes for mentions, comments, and shares.
- LinkedIn: Interestingly enough this social media site works differently for each individual. Why? Because the higher your title and level, the greater the impact on your Klout Score. Another important factor is that although the number of connections, likes, shares, and comments are important, what gives your score the most impact is the amount of recommendations you have received.
- Instagram: Likes, comments, mentions, and tags are counted.
Klout also counts an actual Klout account in itself (yes, you can +K people!). What’s more, you can also link Wikipedia, YouTube, Flickr, Blogger, Tumblr, Last.fm, WordPress, and Bing. However those do not go into your actual Klout score.
Why influence matters and how to increase it
The website itself states that: The Klout Score isn’t the average of your influence across all your networks, it’s the accumulation. This is precisely why it is worth your time to be available on more social networks, this way you don’t just increase your score, you also become an expert and a skilled marketer in your area, making you more reliable and sought after.
And why does this accumulative influence matter? Because more and more often we find ourselves looking at brands being represented by marketers, or marketers speaking for themselves, business engaging with their customers, and most importantly – those seeking more are looking for ways to impact large groups. It is pivotal for you as a marketer to have great engagement, and Klout is a great way to keep track of what is happening with your content.
Klout gives you, as a growing influencer, the ability to keep track of the content that you put out there. You can see exactly what content is doing best, what your recent activity looks like, what is the overall network contribution to your score, and most of all Klout gives your suggestions based on your interests.
As an example, I have taken my Content Marketing filter and got a Daily Suggestion of important people in Content Marketing that I should follow, but also three suggestions of pieces of content that are worth sharing:
Klout goes a little further and even allows you to schedule posts. Now, isn’t that great? It is, because you are able to geolocate! Based on your location and timezone, Klout calculates the best time to share any content that you are scheduling:
What’s more, you can preview your content, shorten links, and most importantly – check out what people would benefit from being mentioned. This way you not only share great content but you make sure that it reaches the right people.
Gina Carr wrote a great book about why Klout matters and in an interview with Mashable she mentioned an important factor to using Klout, the ABC’s:
- (A)lways be engaging: this goes especially for businesses who have their own brand social media. People nowadays are looking for real human interaction, make sure that you use your growing influence and that you reply, like, comment, favorite, or simply thank a customer for their engagement.
- (B)e consistent: A pretty self-explanatory point. If you post content once a month, never promote it, never remind people of it, and most importantly – of you.. well, you will get lost in an ocean of social media content. Post content frequently and consistently, create a community that will be waiting for what you have to say next!
- (C)onnect: This point is especially important and is the next step to our (A). Take the time to create relationships with people who relate to you. The other side of the coin is connecting all your social media accounts to Klout, why? Because this way you will be able to see just how much you and your business are connecting to people.
The perk of being someone
Klout rewards those who work on their brand. It might seem a little highschoolish, but let’s be honest, everyone likes receiving achievement awards! The better you handle your score, and the more you work on engaging and pushing out content that matters to people, the more likely you are to climb the ladder. And Klout recognizes your hard work! Perks can go from a free coffee voucher, to sitting in the business lounge of your favorite airline on your next trip! The higher your Klout Score, the better the perks.
Now, it does not stop there! If you have a successful brand and would like to give perks to those that worked and have created a name for themselves, you can! Klout has now created a business section to their platform. You are able to create campaigns, watch their success, reach influencers with your content, target in order to get site referrals from Klout influencers, and of course you can yourself give perks from your brand.
Now, you may not reach Barack Obamas’ 99 Klout Score, but you can reach higher peaks and become a great marketing influencer that will not only be recognized through perks, but also by recommendations, site referrals, and engagement that will allow you and your business to impact people more than ever before.
Are you using Klout? Share with us in the comments what are your thoughts and how you have seen Klout help you reach people with the right content.