Thursday, October 9, 2014

Adding the Life to Klout

One of the most common criticisms about Klout is that they do not incorporate one's real life influence into one's score; Klout is currently only a measure of one's social media influence. Due to this, some extremely influential people who are not very active on social media have a very low Klout score. While some of these people are so influential and known that they do not care, others find it insulting and are therefore dismissive of the new platform. While Klout is an awesome, innovative idea - creating social influence scores for individuals and not just press organizations and/or companies - they could easily generate both metrics.

Take Sergey Brin for example. Klout shows that he only has a 47 Klout while I currently have a score of 65. One of the additional reasons for this is that +Sergey Brin not only probably didn't create this Klout page (since Klout now automatically generates Klout pages for every Twitter profile), but because it is only linked to his Twitter profile (though I just noticed this link is broken and that he doesn't even have a verified Twitter account). For the most accurate Klout metrics and the highest score one must link up all their social media accounts.

Klout should have three separate scores - social, life and an aggregate of them both. To accomplish this Klout could extract one's education and work experience from LinkedIn, determine the Klout score of the company/university, multiplied by two variables - position and time. For example, continuing with Sergey Brin (though he doesn't have a LinkedIn profile either), we all know that he is one of the founders of Google, Google has a Klout score of 97. Therefore, 97 would be multiplied by one of the highest variables due to his founding position, multiplied by 16 years, To tally his educational life influence score, one would include his education at University of Maryland, which Klout indicates has an 89 Klout score times four years and some points for his bachelors degree in science, plus his brief graduate study at Stanford in computer science. Stanford has a Klout score of 96, times the few months there. All of this would then come up with some tally in between 97-89 for his life experience. This would at least be a start to problem solving the lack of life clout in Klout's metrics.

Put the Buzz in your Feed, Twitter

One of the things about being a social media maven is that it gives me insight into many useful ways to innovate, improve and progress that which is already out there. Two interesting ideas that I have recently had involve Twitter and Klout.

What has baffled me about Twitter is that basically every major press organization (and Twitter itself) as well as all other websites and blogs do not at least minimally automatically include the author's handle in the Twitter share function. The upside of including this information as well as related handles and hashtags is enormous, not only for the press organization, but for Twitter, companies, authors, and everyone involved. The only website I've recently come across which automatically does include the author's handle is BuzzFeed. This is giving them a serious competitive marketing advantage over all other media companies.

I recently started problem solving this issue because every time I read an article and go to share on Twitter I usually look up not only the author's Twitter handle but also any related handles pertaining to the article. While in a way I consider this part of my competitive advantage for I get to gather a greater understanding while researching this information, I do not always have time to do so and sometimes it is information that I have already researched and gathered in previous posts. Furthermore, doing so shows that I am not only thorough but a savvy Twitter user. However, this should be easier for everyone to accomplish. So I thought why not just crowdsource this information. One could also write code to automatically search Twitter's verified accounts for all proper names mentioned and automatically generate suggested handles and hashtags. This would be extremely beneficial to Twitter because it would generate more conversation, collaboration, information and rich data. Why this hasn't been done yet, I do not know, for it isn't because there aren't enough characters; almost every article leaves around 50 or so characters available.

Addendum added 10/9/14 6:08pm:
Twitter shares should also automatically revert to sharing the author's original tweet if they make one after publishing the article, so that they get the activity, recognition and retweets as well as the publication, and they should properly reference the related handles and hashtags. If not it should be crowdsourced and compiled by searching for verified and/or related Twitter accounts to the pronouns listed in the article.