Aim high. It’s a worthy goal for credit scores, SATs and now,Kloutscores. These days, more and more social networkers are looking to boost their Klout rating and show others the power of their social influence.
Klout — which provides social media analytics to measure a user’s influence across social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn – has received much criticism since its inception in 2009 not only for its business model but also for its operating principle. However, more people are turning to the service to see where their influence stacks up against others.
The analysis is executed using data taken from sites such as Twitter and Facebook and measures the size of a person’s network, the content created and how other people interact with that content. Those who sign up for Klout or are connected to those who do are each given a “Klout score” that ranges from one to 100, with higher scores corresponding to a greater strength of their online influence.
“I wouldn’t say Klout is the ‘standard of influence’ as their tagline boldly proclaims, but they can measure one thing, and increasingly well: how content moves through an online network and how people react to it,” Mark W. Schaefer, the author of the upcoming book “Return On Influence: The Revolutionary Power of Klout, Social Scoring, and Influence Marketing” (McGraw Hill 2012), told Mashable. “That may seem simple but it’s extremely complex and is an indicator of influence.”
Schaefer — a marketing professor at Rutgers University — also noted that Klout is even becoming a measurement for job performance and status: “If you’re in that situation, most consider a score over 30 to be pretty reputable and a score over 50 to be elite.”
Are you below your target Klout score? Schaefer reveals seven simple ways to climb up the ranks:
1. Build a network - The key to increasing a Klout score is similar to finding success on the social web in general: Build a targeted, engaged network of people who would be legitimately interested in you and your content.
2. Create meaningful content - Adopt a strategy to create or aggregate meaningful content that your network loves to share with others. Provide links!
3. Engage - Actively engage with others in a helpful and authentic way. Ask questions, answer questions and create a dialogue with your followers.
4. Don’t scheme - Any gaming behaviors that fall outside the basic strategies will eventually catch up to you. For example, specifically targeting conversations with high Klout influencers will probably be more annoying than successful. If you keep focused on your network strategy and your content strategy, you’ll succeed.
5. Interact with everyone - Don’t be afraid to interact with Klout users with lower scores – it won’t hurt your own score. In fact, it helps build their score and in turn makes you more of an influencer.
6. Publish. Remember - you don’t have to make a movie or be elected to office to have power now. All you need to do is publish. Access to free publishing tools such as blogs, video and Twitter have provided users with an opportunity to have a real voice, so take advantage of these many platforms.
7. Keep at it - Don’t be discouraged by your score. It’s more important to just enjoy your social media experience and let the chips fall where they may.