Thursday, May 03, 2012

How to improve Klout Score

 When I first heard about Klout I naturally assumed it was KKK speak for someone in the Klan with power.  Or perhaps the Klan enforcer who clouts people.

Klout is a scoring system that weighs influence in social media.

There is a great book Return on Influence - The revolutionary Power of Klout, Social Scoring, and Influence Marketing by Mark Schaeffer that inspired this post.  His book explains Klout and how it works in detail (although the nature of these things is they always keep a mystery about how they arrive at the numbers and they always change).

My Klout score is 43 and in reading what I have influence in I surprised myself.  When I look at Klout they say I have influence in Ernest Hemingway, Religion and Spirituality, retirement (?), Pablo Picasso and William Shakespeare.  I feel positively cultured.  Perhaps my eldest daughter (who has a PhD in English Literature) should check my Klout just to know who she should call when she has a question.

 Klout did find other things that I feel I do have knowledge on like social media, venture capital, entrepreneurship etc. 

So why those scores for me?  It seems they weigh Twitter and Facebook higher than blogging?  On my update stream which I send to Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook and a Tumblr, I send mostly quotations.  Or course, many of those are quotes from famous authors.

How is Klout used?  This is all about the desire of brands to know who their influencers are.   The theory is then they can "buy" them to increase the buzz about their products.  So brands pay for lists of influencers and then try to get them to speak about them by giving them coupons and free products.

The Problems with Klout.

The downside I see to publishing a Klout Score is people may greatly increase their volume in a world that already has too much information volume.  In my opinion, more people need to "do not speak unless you can improve the silence".  I even worry myself that sometimes my contribution is not needed or not adding value.

I worry that what get measured gets attention so people may focus too much on social media and not enough on real interaction.

I worry that people might spend too much time on social media.

As with SEO, I worry people will try to figure out how to game the system.

Top 4 ways to increase Klout Score (if you even care about increasing it)

1 - Say interesting things.  Klout is a lot about people saying things about what you said and about how much amplification you get around your messages.  Include links.  Be social as in social media.  Share.

2 - Be there.  Klout does grade for just being in the conversation.   Interact with others.  Do not just try to speak.  Have conversations.

3 - Do not try to game the system.  I only add this because systems like these spend lots of time trying to figure out how people are gaming them.  And like Google, they will ban or penalize the cheaters in the long term.

4 - Grow your network.  Reach out to people and connect.  The more your connections, the greater your influence (according to Klout) and the greater your chance of being retweeted or talked about. 

Please tweet this blog post and retweet all the @jimestill you can.  Oops sorry - forgot rule 3.


I contributed a chapter on Venture Funding in an eBook.  Wonder if that will improve my Klout score.


It has been overcast and raining a bit for the past couple of days.   I say good because I am a gardener and we need the rain.  Weather moods depend on outlook which is a choice.

And yes, the parsley diet continues.  My lunch:


At 10:03 AM, Anonymous John@PGISelfDirected said...

I think you've posted some very nice ideas here. Some people are so caught up with social media that they totally miss the whole point: being "social."

At 6:13 AM, Anonymous Didey - Camberley Carer said...

I've just started getting into Klout and Twitter. Thanks for the info Jim, because I'm still struggling with it a little.

I do think Klout relies on FaceBook data a little more than Twitter or Google+ though as my score tends to increase a lot more when I get a few likes!


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