Tuesday, June 28

Measuring Your Social Influence

I suppose it's human nature to want to keep score -- we are just competitive beings in that manner.  It starts early in life as we get grades in our classes and join sports teams at school.  It continues into adult life as well as we look to get raises and promotions at work -- we like to keep score.  I guess it's a way of benchmarking our progress and understanding our worth in the world.

As we get more and more active in social media, it's no wonder we would want to keep score there too.  How many Facebook friends do you have?  How many followers on Twitter?  As much as we all say that it's more about quality than quantity, we all know that we all keep score.

So it's no wonder that along comes a way to measure our presence in social media; a way to aggregate all the outlets we are participating in and measure our collective influence.

Klout score is one of them, as is Peer Index ... branded websites where you register and the program continually measures your sphere of influence.  It couldn't be easier to sign up, there's no hurdle there.  It's fun at first, but after awhile I'm not sure what to do with it.  It changes a lot, probably in an effort to get you to keep checking.  These sites are brands, by the way, and they too need to keep score of traffic for their advertisers.  But how could my influence fluctuate that much from day to day and week to week.  I was really scratching my head over it and then I realized what it's all about.

Gaming.

Measuring your social influence is really just a game.  I don't think there's really any true meaning to it, and I don't think it's especially actionable.  It's just fun.  You get a "score" and you get to compare it to others and you get to see if any of your activity in social media gets your "score" to improve.

Just fun, nothing more, at least not from my perspective.  But it is the birth of a new industry and its own set of brands, I'll give you that.

What's your experience?  Jim.

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