You’ve got Klout!?

Digital influence is one of the most fascinating and widely debated trends in social media today. Whether or not you agree with the idea of assigning a score to individuals based on their actions in popular social networks, the reality is that Pandora’s Box has already been open. People check the scores like investors check stock prices. Brands reward “influential” consumers with products and services. Employers consult scores to lure seemingly more qualified candidates. This is already happening and as a result, there’s much to learn.

So what is the future of digital and what does it mean to you and me? My guest on this episode of Revolution is Joe Fernandez, founder and CEO of Klout, one of the earliest and arguably largest player in the realm of digital influence. We talk about the rise of Klout, its challenges in measuring digital and real world influence, and what consumers and businesses need to think to make influence matter.

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  • http://www.hotpepper.ca Kim Siever

    Wait. People are still using Klout?

    • http://www.briansolis.com/ briansolis

      Klout’s focusing on the idea of a discovery platform. Pretty interesting.

  • Anonymous

    Yes KLOUT does matter when you are a 80!!

  • Anonymous

    An important interview. Klout is potentially a tool for discovering communities surrounding keywords. And, like Rapportive, a way into an individual’s body of social communication.

    • http://www.briansolis.com/ briansolis

      Indeed. Well said Nathaniel.

  • http://twitter.com/SabotImages Ed: Sabot Images

    To me this is just a method of keeping score.

  • http://twitter.com/gregnazvanov greg nazvanov

    have not met anyone who actually cared about Klout score, or PeerIndex for that reason

    • http://www.briansolis.com/ briansolis

      Brands seem to care…

  • Dara Khajavi

    I think Klout’s mission is very important. However, in my opinion, Klout has not reached its full potential. I am excited to see how Klout will affect brands, internet, and social media in the future. Internet has helped equalize people and open communication with businesses. I believe that Klout will further open up communication.

    • http://www.briansolis.com/ briansolis

      Agreed. Thank you Dara.

    • http://twitter.com/msmir Miriam Slozberg

      It is heading in the right direction but I do agree, it has more improvements to make and it will.

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  • http://www.sumpto.com/ Benjamin Kosinski

    Always great hearing Joe and Brian speak…might also be interesting for your readers if you check out Sumpto, a platform that measures the social influence of college students. The algorithm is specifically tailored to metrics unique to college and we only allow students to register. It’s interesting to see how social influence applies to the difficult to reach college demographic and the specific approach/attention they require.

    • http://www.briansolis.com/ briansolis

      Thanks for watching Benjamin. Interesting. Will take a look!

  • http://twitter.com/KenyanMarketer Muthuri Kinyamu

    Say I got a Klout score of 60, influential in topics around media, government and education but I blog about social media, brand strategy and marketing in general, how do I get that influence in my core area of expertise? I don’t seem to hack this. and should companies hire people based on their Klout score when looking for people to fill up slots in their social media team? Advice.

  • Dave Crenshaw

    Looking forward to seeing how Klout can impact businesses and social media in the future. Great interview, Brian!

    • http://www.briansolis.com/ briansolis

      Cheers!

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  • BenParis

    Thank you Brian for bringing up this topic, and I definitely agree with the main aspect of kloot score: somebody’s digital influence will effectively change her/his influence in the real world…that said, the concept of having an algorythm measuring and “scoring” people’s influence is a bit of a stretch to me.

    I don’t know if you would agree with this, but I think that your influence as a thought leader (or “thought sharer”) is about people’s perception of what you say, but also about what you do!

    And again, what I have just said is absolutly not in opposition to what kloot is. It just seems to me that the kloot might miss the point about influence

    • http://www.briansolis.com/ briansolis

      Thanks for watching Ben and for this comment. I like the idea of a “thought starter” too! ;)

      The thing about Klout is that we need to look beyond the score in order to find the value of digital social capital and the interest graphs woven between contextual relationships. There’s true value there…

  • http://twitter.com/msmir Miriam Slozberg

    I see huge potential in Klout, looking forward to seeing it evolve.

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  • http://twitter.com/AnnSeeYEOH Ann-See Yeoh

    Thank you for the interview. Whilst I can see how impactful Klout can be for larger businesses and their brands, how would it impact on small business owners? Many small business owners struggle to grasp social media and its use for business. Klout is perhaps the last thing on their mind so what advice would you give them?

ABOUT ME

Brian Solis is principal at Altimeter Group, a research firm focused on disruptive technology. A digital analyst, anthropologist, and futurist, Solis has studied and influenced the effects of emerging technology on business, marketing, and culture. Solis is also globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors in new media. His new book, What's the Future of Business (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold and flourish in four distinct moments of truth. His previous book, The End of Business as Usual, explores the emergence of Generation-C, a new generation of customers and employees and how businesses must adapt to reach them. Prior to End of Business, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.

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