Everyone wants to keep up with the Joneses (or the Kardashians if you’re so inclined), but how can you be relevant in social media if there is no scorecard? Well, there is a scorecard and it’s called Klout. Klout.com is a website that uses social media analytics to measure your rank according to your social influence. It tabulates your Klout Score, which is a number from 1-100 to show how influential you are compared to other online users.
How is your Klout Score Calculated?
Klout calculates your score by tracking more than 400 different signals from eight social networks. It calculates and updates your new score every morning and publishes it for everyone to view. This score is a combination of attributes, most important of which is the ratio of interactions you get, compared to the amount of content you share. So, 10 re-tweets from a single tweet is more important than 10 re-tweets from 10 tweets. It also considers who is re-tweeting your content. If President Obama re-tweets your tweet, you can be sure your Klout score will skyrocket, compared to the little kid down the block with 10 followers re-tweeting your tweet.
Klout now uses real world data to calculate your score. Someone like Warren Buffett never uses social media, but he has great influence. A private lunch with him that benefited charity was sold on Ebay for $1,000,010, so you had better believe that people want to hear what he has to say. Klout now uses the number of Bing searches on a person’s name, as well as entries in Wikipedia as an indicator of someone’s importance. It processes 12 billion daily social signals every day!
What are the Benefits of Having a High Klout Score?
Some people consider monitoring your Klout score a waste of time. I personally think it’s something you should review and reflect on from time to time to see where you stand, but nothing you should become obsessed about. It’s a good reflection of your influence on your industry, and its view of you as a thought leader in that community. If you are making a conscious effort to become better known, it can be a good indicator of your success, and can be used to figure out ways to improve your influence.
A secondary benefit of having a high Klout score is free stuff. Who doesn’t like free stuff? Yes, Klout partners with different businesses that want to reach people with influence and provide free products for you to test. These businesses hope that you will talk about their products, and ideally recommend them.